TOPEKA, Kan (KSNT) – The Topeka City Council will be holding a public hearing on a proposed development in southwest Topeka. During a special meeting Thursday afternoon, the council approved a public hearing on the Wheatfield Village development at 29th and Fairlawn.
“It’s a huge redevelopment. As you know that corner has been a little vacant and it would mean that we would have businesses in areas that are going to raise the values of that area and that’s also going to result in tax improvements for us,” said Topeka councilwoman Michelle De La Isla.
Developers have talked about transforming the empty lot into a shopping center like Legends in Kansas City. For now, the lot is covered in overgrown weeds, broken concrete and garbage. The city council has agreed to establish a special tax district to help jump start the project, but first the community has a chance to voice their opinion at a public hearing.
“I think it’d be really cool if they did something like that that was a little more kids oriented than just shopping,” said Kelly Conroy, who lives near the development.
“In Legends they have like Adidas brands, like they have a bunch of brands stores in there, but I think they should add a little bit more of restaurants, like restaurants you don’t get in town or nearby,” said 11-year-old Ethan Yhorig.
Developers have not said when they anticipate construction starting. The public hearing is scheduled for June 26. This will technically be the second public hearing on the issue. A hearing was held in December, but the interim city manager said there was a problem with how neighbors in the area were notified.