AMC Entertainment Latest to Cross into Missouri as Border War Continues

By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor

The border war continues and AMC Entertainment is the latest company that has decided to leave downtown Kansas City for Leawood. The Kansas City Star reports the movie theater giant will relocate its world headquarters to a new four-story building in the Park Place development at 117th Street and Nall Avenue.

AMC, the second-largest movie theater chain in the U.S., has been searching for a new world headquarters for its 400 employees for almost a year. By the time its current lease at 10 Main Center expires in 2013, the $30 million project is expected to be completed.

Despite attempts made by Missouri and Kansas City officials to retain the organization’s long-term business, AMC describes its current downtown location as inadequate. AMC signed a 12-year lease for the new 130,000-square-foot home which will be designed by 360 Architecture of Kansas City. The Park Place development will feature restaurants and shops in addition to 350,000 square feet of office space.

The deal also included a 10-year lease extension of the AMC Town Center 20 theater complex in Leawood. Kansas greased the wheels of the deal with a reported $47 million incentive package and thus managed to poach the third major employer from Kansas City. In less than two years, JPMorgan Retirement Plan services and KeyBank Real Estate Capital moved 800 and 300 jobs to Overland Park.

Last spring the pleas for metropolitan cease-fire were expressed through a petition, to both Kansas and Missouri governors, by 17 key business executives on both sides of the border. Nixon said he would consider the request but Kansas Governor Sam Brownback turned it down.

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