Westport High building slated for residential redevelopment

A new proposal for the old Westport High School located in midtown details plans to renovate the school into apartments, and will soon be brought before the Planned Industrial Expansion Authority.

The developers who renovated the former Westport Middle School into co-working space now are tackling the historic high school across the street, proposing a $45 million apartment redevelopment.

The vacant Westport High School building, which opened in 1908 at 315 E. 39th St., would be renovated as a 133-unit apartment building and 20,000 square feet of office space under a plan being pursued by HP Development Partners.

Andrew Brain of HP Development described the proposed renovation of the historic high school as the next phase of the development plan that began with the conversion of the old middle school into Plexpod Westport Commons in 2017.

The building is located on the transit shuttle between the University of Missouri-Kansas City  Volker Campus and its Hospital Hill campus. It’s also 3 1/2 blocks from the planned 39th Street streetcar station.

Westport High School was pitched to UMKC two years ago as a potential site for a new home for its Conservatory of Music and Dance, though the university decided to pursue its plans for a new conservatory on its existing Volker Campus.

The new proposal, which is being submitted to the Planned Industrial Expansion Authority next week, would renovate the high school into 22 studio apartments, 100 one-bedroom units, and 10 two-bedroom units.

Brain said the developers have future plans for redeveloping the site beyond the old school building. A third phase could include more multi-family and/or office new construction, and a fourth phase calls for retail development.

The entire investment could total over $130 million if fully built out.