Viega to leave Epic Center for sixth floor of Bank of America Center

WICHITA — The Epic Center’s loss will be the Bank of America Center’s gain.

Viega, a plumbing and heating systems manufacturer, is leaving the Epic Center for 32,000 square feet at Phil Ruffin’s Bank of America Center at Douglas and Broadway early next year.

“That’s a great lease,” Ruffin says. “We’re very happy to get it.”

No one with Viega would comment about the move.

“They’re a fine company,” Ruffin says. “I like them very much. They’re a fast-growing company.”

Chris Ruffin, Phil Ruffin’s son, and Jon Cyphert of Ruffin Properties handled the deal with Scott Salome of NAI Martens.

“They did a great job,” Phil Ruffin says.

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Entercom Radio to move to Ruffin Building

UPDATED — After two decades in Brittany Center at 21st and Woodlawn, Entercom Radio is moving its Wichita office.

By early 2015, Entercom will be in the Ruffin Building at 9111 E. Douglas. That’s the building that’s perhaps better known as the former Pizza Hut headquarters.

Entercom is taking 12,000 square feet there.

“The Ruffin Building better suits our needs,” says vice president and general manager Jackie Wise.

Entercom stations include KNSS, 1330-AM, KEYN, 103.7-FM, KDGS, 93.9-FM, KFBZ, 105.3-FM, and KFH Sports, which is on 98.7-FM and 1240-AM. All of them are moving to the Ruffin Building.

“We are very excited about moving over there,” Wise says. “We think it’s a great facility that’s well maintained, and it’s a wonderful location.”

Chris Ruffin and Jon Cyphert of Ruffin Properties and Craig Ablah of Classic Real Estate handled the deal.

“We’re so glad to have them,” Ruffin says of Entercom.

The move likely will happen in February or March.

Wichita’s LSI office to move to Ruffin Building on East Douglas

UPDATED — When LSI’s Engenio storage division sold to NetApp in 2011, one piece of the LSI business remained at the NetApp building on North Rock Road.

LSI is now moving into its own space at the Ruffin Building at 9111 E. Douglas, which is the one-time Pizza Hut headquarters.

“We’re excited to have them,” says Chris Ruffin, director of real estate for his father Phil Ruffin’s Ruffin Properties.

The 5-year lease is for 19,000 square feet of the 254,000-square-foot building.

“I have about 25,000 left,” Ruffin says of what’s still available to lease.

Marty Gilchrist and Grant Tidemann of J.P. Weigand & Sons helped him with the deal.

“They were instrumental in helping put it together,” Ruffin says.

Also helping was California-based Ham Southworth of Studley Inc. Southworth represents LSI nationally.

He says about 50 people will be moving. Southworth says most are engineers but there are sales, operations and marketing employees as well.

“They’re going to move in as soon as possible,” Ruffin says. He anticipates that will take three or four months.

Other tenants include Ally, CCH and Pure-Formance Sports & Fitness Training Center, which Ruffin says is open to the public.

He says Ruffin Properties recently spent $115,000 on landscaping at the Ruffin Building.

“And it’s going to really improve … the overall appearance to the building.”

Ruffin says the LSI lease is significant.

“It’s just a really good deal,” Ruffin says.

And not just for Ruffin Properties and LSI, he says, but for Wichita in general.

“It means that the private sector’s moving a little bit.”

Petroleum Club management to take over City Hall Cafe

WICHITA — The Wichita City Hall Cafe is going to reopen Jan. 3 under new management.

The same group that manages the Petroleum Club, the Walkway Cafe at the Bank of America Center and the Atrium Cafe at the Ruffin Building is going to provide food service at City Hall.

“We just kind of have a concept going that’s fairly easy to duplicate,” says general manager Kathy Latham.

She wasn’t looking to expand her food service.

City Council member Jeff Longwell happened to be at the Bank of America Center for an event and had some of her group’s food.

“I thought their food was delicious,” he says.

City Hall had just lost its previous food provider, so Longwell suggested Latham submit a proposal.

“It’s all about timing I suppose,” he says.

Longwell says Latham’s group has a great track record.

“It should be a natural to have a cafe that people can rely on,” he says.

Latham says her staff does an excellent job, though she thinks City Hall will be it for expansions.

“I don’t want to go past my limit of what we can do successfully and good,” she says. “I don’t want to stretch ourselves to where we’re just slinging food.”

Longwell is thrilled the City Hall deal with Latham worked out.

“Trust me,” he says, “when you weigh as much as I do, you know good food.”