Kemper Arena

National Register nomination for the 1974 enclosed multipurpose entertainment arena. Kemper Arena is an exceptional local example of the property type that evolved in the mid-twentieth century to include functional elements of a traditional auditorium, a music venue, and a sports facility. The City of Kansas City, Missouri developed Kemper Arena to provide a modern, year-round venue for athletic and performance events. Over the next forty years, the variety and importance of events hosted by Kemper Arena created an inexorable connection to nearly every resident of the Kansas City metropolitan area as well as to many from a much broader region. Kemper Arena remained the city’s most important enclosed sports and entertainment venue until its role was supplanted by the opening of the Sprint Center in 2007. Replacement of Kemper Arena reflected a shift in arena economics, rather than functionality, that led to the demolition of many venues of similar vintage across the country. The nationwide loss of mid-twentieth century multipurpose arenas enhances the rarity and significance of Kemper as an example of its property type.

 

Rosin Preservation Blog – Kemper Arena

KCUR – Kemper Arena Redevelopment Project Gets Historic Tax Credit Boost | PDF

Kansas City Star – Kemper Arena’s national historic designation likely a key to its future | PDF

Address

1800 Genessee St.
Kansas City, MO

Completed

2016

Category

National Register