<< Return to Blog List

Kansas City Area Development Council Announces $1B in New Capital Investment, Creating 3,700+ Jobs

by Megan Segura | Nov 18, 2020

Kansas City Region - November 18, 2020 - The Kansas City Area Development Council (KCADC) announced today that the Kansas City region attracted 13 manufacturing, eCommerce and professional services companies in the last 12 months that will invest more than $1 billion and create 3,789 jobs. The news was announced at KCADC’s first “all-digital” annual meeting, with record attendance in the organization's 45-year history. 

The event was streamed digitally and broadcast on TV with well in excess of 2,000 business leaders, civic partners, national site location consultants, corporate executives and individuals across the country who have an affinity to KC.  

“KC placed a strategic investment several years ago in our market’s inherent strengths for manufacturing, logistics and e-commerce. This investment led to the creation of KC SmartPort, which elevates KC’s competitive advantage through consistent messaging to companies in these industries, and is paying dividends today,” said Tim Cowden, president and CEO, KCADC. “With more than 231 million square feet of existing industrial space, ample land for new buildings, a skilled logistics workforce and robust power and fiber infrastructure, Kansas City is primed for additional growth in the industrial sector.”

In 2020, KCADC helped attract prominent companies, including an 880,000-square-foot distribution center for Urban Outfitters, Inc., a 1,200-person e-commerce center for Chewy, Inc., and manufacturing facilities for Dot’s Pretzels and Tuthill Corporation, among others.

“Our priorities in identifying the home for our new omni-channel distribution center focused on people, and it was the quality of the local workforce that convinced us this is the right place to be,” said Dave Ziel, chief development officer of Urban Outfitters, which plans to open its $350 million facility in 2022.

The Kansas City region ranks No. 3 in the U.S. for industrial construction activity in cities with populations between one and four million, outpacing larger markets including Denver and Seattle. KC has seen 14.8 million square feet of industrial construction in 2020.  

With a stronghold for financial, shared services and tech operations, KCADC also celebrated national recognition for Kansas City for professionals and future investment, including its ranking by Business Insider as the nation’s best “work from home” city, and its status as a Top Mid-Size City for Future Projects by the Site Selectors Guild.

“With a lower cost of living, free Wi-Fi downtown, access to diverse housing options and an abundance of lifestyle amenities, Kansas City is an ideal spot for remote workers leaving larger urban areas due to the pandemic,” said Jill McCarthy, senior executive of corporate attraction, KCADC. “And there are plenty of new jobs for skilled professionals that relocate here.”

There are currently 49,000 open jobs in KC, and more than 15,000 jobs are created each year. Tech and highly-skilled jobs are growing faster in KC than in Seattle, Austin, Chicago and NYC, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

“During such an uncertain time, KCADC’s success this year speaks to the highest level of professionalism, customer service and emphasis on regional collaboration that continues to move KC forward,” said Lisa Ginter, CEO of CommunityAmerica Credit Union and senior co-chair of the 2021 KCADC Board of Directors. “This community has tremendous heart, and I look forward to continuing to make a positive impact on the KC region by supporting and amplifying the ongoing efforts of KCADC.”  

In 2021, Lisa Ginter succeeds Dave Hall, executive vice chairman at Hallmark Cards, Inc., as senior-co chair of the KCADC Board of Directors. Brett Gordon, chairman of the board at McCownGordon Construction, will join KCADC’s volunteer leadership team serving as incoming co-chair, and Brian Roberts, chief diversity officer at Lockton Companies, will serve as treasurer. 

“I’m looking forward to working alongside Lisa Ginter and Brett Gordon as KCADC actively positions the KC region as a top destination for business and talent in the year ahead,” said Roberts. “I can’t wait to see what 2021 brings for KCADC and the KC region.”

The Kansas City Area Development Council serves the 18-county, two-state Kansas City area by marketing the region's business and lifestyle assets to companies around the world. Working closely with its two states, and 50-plus county and community partners, the region has attracted more than 60,000 new jobs over its 40-year history. KCADC also leads the efforts behind the KC Animal Health Corridor, KC SmartPort and TeamKC. | thinkKC.com.


Leave a comment

KC by the Numbers

Brand Toolkit


KC News