South Loop Project reaches funding milestone; open house set for Tuesday
KANSAS CITY, MO – Feb. 28, 2023 – The South Loop Project announces a $45 million fundraising milestone thanks to contributions from H&R Block Inc., federal funding secured by retired U.S. Senator Roy Blunt, and private donations from JE Dunn Construction Co., Loews Kansas City Hotel, Kansas City Southern, Power & Light District, the Cordish Companies, and 1400 Baltimore.
H&R Block Inc., in partnership with the Marion and Henry Bloch Family Foundation and the H&R Block Foundation, committed a lead gift of $10 million toward the South Loop Project, a state of the art destination park designed as a unique sensory experience for parkgoers of all ages. The 4.6 acre space will reshape Downtown Kansas City by connecting adjacent communities to the Central Business District, the Crossroads Arts District, and the Convention Center. The pledge marks the largest private donation so far to the proposed green space project.
“I am proud to announce we reached a major milestone toward making the South Loop project a reality, thanks to H&R Block’s generous contribution. We are proud to continue to partner with our federal, state, and local private businesses to make this project happen, improving the quality of life for residents and businesses in the area,” said Mayor Quinton Lucas.
“When you travel across America and around the world, you realize the great cities have breathtaking urban parks,” said Jeff Jones, H&R Block President and Chief Executive Officer. “Our commitment to this project is a reflection of our work to Make Every Block Better, our belief in Kansas City, and our collective ambition of greatness.”
Founded in 1955, H&R Block opened its world headquarters nearly 17 years ago at 13th & Main in Downtown, just a short walk from the planned South Loop Project. In 2019, the company launched its community impact platform, Make Every Block Better, which is focused on increasing connections by improving the places and spaces where neighbors convene.
“We are thrilled to join H&R Block in making this leadership gift,” said David Miles, President, H&R Block Foundation and the Bloch Family Foundation. “We believe the South Loop Project represents the Bloch family’s long-standing commitment to bring together diverse individuals and families to share experiences.”
“The South Loop Project represents a rare opportunity to reshape Downtown Kansas City by creating a public gathering space for the region and a new destination attraction that will positively impact our entire community,” said Bill Dietrich, President & CEO of the Downtown Council of Kansas City. “We are profoundly grateful to H&R Block, the Bloch Family Foundation, and the H&R Block Foundation for embracing this state-of-the-art destination park.”
The $200 million South Loop Project is a collaborative effort led by the City of Kansas City, the Downtown Council, and Port KC. The South Loop is a catalytic project priority of the Imagine Downtown KC 2030 Strategic Plan, developed by the community under the leadership of the Downtown Council and the City of Kansas City.
“We know today, without a doubt, the importance of nature to the health of the human race. This project will change the lives of those who call KC’s Downtown and Midtown home,” said Jon Stephens, President & CEO, Port KC. “It’ll impress upon the millions of visitors the value our leaders place upon our built environment for all.”
An open house is planned for Tuesday, March 7, from 4:30-6:30 p.m. at the Kirk Family YMCA, 222 W 11th St., Kansas City. The public is invited to attend to learn more about the South Loop Project and to share ideas with the planning team. For further information visit kcsouthloopproject.org.