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In 2019, LANE4 Property Group Inc. and Olathe teamed up to give the Olathe Public Library one of its two central locations in downtown, but the project has changed significantly since its initial announcement.

To hit the projected opening in the spring, LANE4 reduced the project’s size. Instead of a five-story, 70,000-square-foot mixed-use building housing Olathe Public Library’s central branch, a restaurant and office space, LANE4 shifted to a four-story, 46,600-square-foot building for the library, the Olathe Chamber of Commerce and Economic Development Office, and local coffee shop Sweet Tee’s.

“In the summer of 2020, when uncertainty was so high, we made the decision to simplify the plan in order to get it moving forward and deliver on the core goal of the project: to deliver a landmark library,” LANE4 Managing Partner Michael Berenbom said.

The $25 million building broke ground in 2021 on Santa Fe Street, north of Center Park between Chestnut and Water streets. It has made significant progress on the exterior, with the brick on the second level and the black metal panels above the windows almost complete.

The city was inspired years ago to trade using various neighborhood libraries for just two solid destinations — the Indian Creek branch and the downtown location. The building probably will finish a couple of months before the April grand opening to provide ample time for move-in and training.

“The downtown library will be a realization of Olathe’s ambitious 2012 master plan, which called for a destination library that will attract people from throughout Olathe and the entire metro,” Berenbom said. “The city’s commitment to this public asset will pay dividends in the community for decades to come.”

This will be Sweet Tee’s second location beyond its original spot at 2063 E. Santa Fe St. The coffee shop will be on the lobby level and include a pickup option for users along 135th Street.

Lawrence-based Multistudio and Overland Park-based DLR Group are the architects, McCownGordon Construction is the general contractor, and Olsson is the civil engineer.

Read the full Kansas City Business Journal article here.