March 10, 2017
KANSAS CITY, Missouri – Ask, and you shall receive…eventually.
City officials have confirmed that the demolition of the blighted Royale Inn is scheduled to begin on Monday March 20, marking another step forward in the Paseo Gateway project.
The demolition, which is more than a year in the making, will begin at 10:00 a.m. on March 20. Because the City has so far been unable to come to terms on a purchase price with the owner of the abutting property to the west of the Royale Inn (600 Paseo), the demolition is largely expected to be conducted by hand.
“I know it’s been a hot-button issue for residents in the Historic Northeast, I know they’ve wanted this day to come for a long time, and we are just as happy as them that this day has finally arrived,” said John Baccala, Communications and Community Liaison for the Neighborhoods and Housing Services Department.
The City of Kansas City, Missouri completed the acquisition of the Royale Inn in August of 2016. The site was purchased for $1.8 million plus closing costs on Friday, July 29, the deed was signed on Monday, August 1, and the building was secured by Wednesday, August 3. Now more than seven months later, the demolition will pave the way for the eventual realignment of the intersection of Independence Ave. and The Paseo. The realignment is expected to improve connectivity between downtown Kansas City and neighborhoods on the city’s east side, including the Historic Northeast.
The Royale Inn initially opened in February 1965 and was known then as the Northway Inn, an affiliate of Best Western. The 60-room facility featured an outdoor, heated pool, along with a snack bar and the Lantern Lounge, a popular bar. In 1968 the Northway Inn came under new ownership, but expansion plans for the motel never quite materialized. The Northway Inn became the Ramada Inn Downtown in 1971, and was later transitioned into the Royale Inn and remodeled during the late 1980s.