BNIM pulls out of Crossroads deal

Architecture firm BNIM announced Thursday that is will abandon its headquarters project in the Crossroads district in Kansas City.

BNIM had planned to be the main tenant in a vacant warehouse on Baltimore Ave., owned by developer Shirley Helzberg. The building, which became the focus of an incentives fight, was to be redeveloped as BNIM’s headquarters, a public green space and a business incubator.

In October, the City Council supported tax incentives to renovate the space, but a group of Kansas City school district parents and other social justice activists objected to the $5.2 million in incentives for the $13 million project, arguing that it redirected too much money away from the school district. In the following months, BNIM and the developer tried to reach a compromise that would appease the protestors, but various proposals were rejected.

Kansas City Mayor Sly James said he worries that the company’s decision may mean that high-quality jobs in architecture won’t be retained in the city.

Read more: Kansas City Star

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