The building at 259 E. Broadway has several issues that needed to be addressed and the successful use of one of Missouri’s programs for downtown development made redevelopment possible.
The building came into the ownership of Lawson Bank, which is based in Lawson, but operates a branch in Excelsior Springs. At the time, the building was considered blighted, and when a developer whose plan met the overall vision for downtown Excelsior Springs was identified, the Downtown Excelsior Partnership (DEP) approached the bank with the idea for a donation to take place so that state Neighborhood Assistance Program (NAP) credits could be utilized.
Lawson Bank agreed to endorse the program and local residents Brent and Lisa McElwee acquired the property from the DEP to create the new retail space on the east end of Broadway. Brent McElwee performed or oversaw much of the renovation work himself. Windows which had been bricked up on the east end of the building were reopened and new windows that matched the style of existing windows were added, a new brick veneer was installed under all windows and a wall cap was installed across the top of the building. The brick was painted in colors more in keeping with the historic architecture of the building and complementary to other renovation work on Broadway.
Broadway & Penn opened for business in late June 2010 offering a wide variety of merchandise. In April 2011, the McElwees were named Citizens of the Year by the Excelsior Springs Chamber of Commerce in recognition of their work in restoring the building and creating new growth in the downtown business district.
Soon after, the building was purchased by Cheryl Boos and her daughter, Misty Wright. Today it is home of the Broadway Bar & Grill, a family atmosphere restaurant establishment.
The storefronts were constructed between 1905 and 1909. They have housed a variety of commercial enterprises over the years, including a grocery store, millinery and “moving pictures”, furniture store, pool hall and bakery. The renovated building is a good example of simple, commercial architecture in twentieth century small towns.
For more about the Broadway Bar & Grill, click here.