WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – A recently formed group, Penumbra International LLC announced a proposal Friday for a $1.5 billion Riverfront project funded by private groups.
Their plan included re-purposing Century II into an air and space museum, building a 40-story convention center hotel, aquarium, and more.
During Friday’s media conference, members of Save Century II were quick to raise questions about layout plans, Penumbra leadership, and funding.
“This is a recently formed company within the last three weeks. They just recently hired a business strategist. They’re throwing all kinds of ideas out there. So, I don’t know if this is really as well thought out as it should be,” said Celeste Racette, member with Save Century II.
Despite the lack of details, Racette says something this bold might increase competition with the Riverfront Legacy Master Plan.
“It is interesting though that they aren’t asking for public funds. I do like that part,” she said.
Penumbra says they have the $1.5 billion already committed. However, they would not tell us who is investing.
“All I can say right now is a mix of local and outside of Wichita and again it is committed. It is not, what if? It’s a matter of getting the public’s approval,” said Brian McHughes, Penumbra International LLC spokesman.
Save Century II is hoping this will at least encourage Wichitans to use their voice.
“The voter petition that’s a way for them to ensure that they will in fact have a vote on this, and it won’t be handled by city council. Business as usual,” said Greg Kite, member of Save Century II.
KSN asked councilmen in attendance, Brian Frye and Brandon Johnson, for their thoughts on the proposal and they declined to comment.
Penumbra International LLC says you can learn more or share your thoughts by e-mailing Stephanie Dillon at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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