New retail center under construction at Village at Greenwich at 21st and Greenwich

WICHITA — With the existing 21,000-square-foot retail center fully leased at the Village at Greenwich, a new one is now under construction.

“We need more space,” says Steve Wheeler, one of the developers of the northeast corner of 21st and Greenwich.

The new 10,000-square-foot retail center is along 21st Street just west of Community Bank. The other center is along Greenwich.

“We’re feeling pretty optimistic about the area,” Wheeler says. “We’re excited about the STAR bonds and the athletic center coming in, and we’re trying to stay in front of it and make sure we have space available when people want to be up there.”

He has a dozen more acres to develop there.

In addition to the retail centers, there’s also a Staybridge Suites there and a Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites under construction.

Wheeler says he’s “kind of pleased with the whole outlook on Greenwich right now.”

That wasn’t always the case.

“Things were moving along nice, and then in ’08 and ’09 things really slowed down,” he says. “It seems to be picking back up again.”

Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites coming to 21st and Greenwich

WICHITA — A South Dakota company is building a new Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites near the northeast corner of 21st and Greenwich.

KAJ Management of Mitchell, S.D., will break ground on the 97-room hotel in early November.

“We’re full steam ahead to start construction,” says owner and vice president Aaron Johnson.

The project is separate from the STAR bonds district that’s being created for a new athletic complex at K-96 and Greenwich.

“We would have done it regardless,” Johnson says. “Without question, the future looks very good in that area of town.”

The hotel will be within the district but won’t receive any financial assistance from it, Johnson says.

The Holiday Inn, which will take about seven months to build, will be KAJ’s sixth hotel.

Mitchell-based Puetz Corp. is the contractor.

KAJ also purchased the adjacent 88-room Staybridge Suites this summer.

MK Hospitality and DKC Development sold the 3-year-old hotel to KAJ for $8.5 million.

“It was one of the highest sales for the brand ever in the United States,” says former co-owner Dan Marak.

Marak, who is based in Shawnee, is partners in MK Hospitality with Nebraska-based John Klimpel.

“We weren’t really marketing it,” Marak says of the hotel. “We just got an offer. It was a pretty nice offer. We just couldn’t resist it.”

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