RIVERSIDE, MO-Block & Co. Inc. Realtors, one of Kansas City’s largest developers, has agreed to pay for village-owned land to create a business park with up to eight million sf of industrial. The company, led by Ken Block, plans to buy about 400 acres here and build Horizons Business Park, with a first phase set for more than five million sf and up to $300 million worth of speculative and build-to-suit construction, says a village consultant.

Ned O’Connor, president of Waterford Property Co. LLC, helped the village of 3,000 people set up the land for the park, and then acted as the consultant for the property’s sale. He says the sleepy town never knew what hit them after Argosy Casino decided to locate there, but that the village figured getting land ready for more development was a priority. “They’ve this incredible revenue coming in, and they’re on the river, so they bought 700 acres of vacant ground that used to be a flood plain. Then, they built this $120-million levy around the ground, primarily to protect the city, which did have a flood in 1993. Then, they struggled with what to do with the property.”

He says he joined the project in 2005, and helped get a $40-million interchange on I-635. “That really brought the project to life,” O’Connor tells GlobeSt.com. “They also built almost a highway off the interchange, four lanes wide.”

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