Officials at the University of Missouri-Kansas City recently announced their intention to relocate many of their fine arts efforts to downtown.
At this point it's just an idea in search of a location and funding. But what could such a move hold for Kansas City's cultural and economic life?
Those questions will be examined in the panel discussion A Vision of a Downtown Arts Campus on Wednesday, September 5, 2012, at 6:30 p.m. at the Central Library, 14 W. 10th St.
Panelists include Jacqueline Chanda, president of the Kansas City Art Institute, and Peter Witte, dean of the UMKC Conservatory of Music and Dance. The panel will be moderated by Mike Burke, chairman of the Mayor's Task Force of the Arts.
UMKC officials have identified three possible sites for the arts campus - two near the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts in the Crossroads District and one adjacent to Barney Allis Plaza.
The preliminary plans call for an arts campus that organically fits into the neighborhood, complementing existing low-rise, light-industrial buildings that are ripe for adaptive reuse.
Planners envision an urban ecosystem of cafes, restaurants, bookstores, and shops - as well as private studios and recital rooms.
The arts campus would increase demand for additional housing, even for small hotels to accommodate visiting performers. The establishment of new performance venues would help keep downtown streets active after 6 p.m.
This event is co-sponsored by the Downtown Council of Kansas City.
Admission is free. A 6 p.m. reception precedes the event. RSVP online  or call 816.701.3407.