Urban Air Adventure Park opening third St. Louis location in Sunset Hills
January 27, 2022


By Gloria Lloyd – Reporter, St. Louis Business Journal Oct 11, 2021, 1:20pm EDT

Indoor amusement park Urban Air will open its third location in the St. Louis region in a vacant retail space at Sunset Hills Plaza.

Urban Air Adventure Park, a national chain of indoor amusement parks based in Dallas with 154 locations nationwide, plans to open in the former Stein Mart retail space at 10990 Sunset Hills Plaza, a shopping center that is anchored by Home Depot, Marshalls and David’s Bridal. The franchised chain already has locations in Fairview Heightsand Cottleville, and anticipates expanding to 200 locations nationwide by next year.

The $3.5 million, 35,000-square-foot facility will include a mix of indoor attractions for families. One is an indoor sky coaster called the Skyrider that owner Joe Van Deusen called a “zip line on steroids.” Also, each location has trampolines, bumper cars, virtual reality, a playground, dodgeball and climbing walls. The park includes attractions aimed at smaller children and, other than a height requirement, there is no age limit on who can ride them.

Van Deusen originally hoped to open the doors before Christmas, but with supply chain delays, an opening date around the end of February is more likely. The attraction is busiest in the winter months, from November to March. The national chain likes to locate in strip malls and former retail spaces where ample lighting and other stores and shoppers help mothers feel comfortable bringing their children, Van Deusen said.

In order for Urban Air to build at the space, the major stores in the shopping center all had to agree, Sansone Group’s Mark Kornfeld told the Sunset Hills Board of Aldermen, which approved the new location. The shopping center is owned and leased by Sansone Group, with Kornfeld and Grant Mechlin serving as the brokers. The owner of the Circle of Knowledge toy store next to the former SteinMart also wrote a letter to the board in support of Urban Air.

“They were all thrilled with who the user is,” Kornfeld said of the other businesses. “Not only is Sansone Group as the landlord excited to have Urban Air here, but we’re really looking forward to a first class operation.”

Van Deusen said he looked across St. Louis County for a location and landed on Sunset Hills due to the many families in the area and the site’s proximity to other attractions such as The Magic House in Kirkwood. While the Urban Air was in development, Bass Pro Shops announced that it would be building its third St. Louis location nearby at 3600 S. Lindbergh Blvd. Like Bass Pro, Van Deusen and Urban Air appreciated the city’s access to interstates, as Urban Air’s customers often come from 15 to 25 minutes away, and sometimes more than an hour.

“By the time we started digging into the market, we loved the Sunset Hills area,” Van Deusen said. “Just how many families are there, it’s just a very family-centric area and that’s our No. 1 customer, is the mom. We want to be right there in the heart, where there’s lots of kids and lots of families that can come use our space.”

The Sunset Hills Urban Air will be the eighth Urban Air location for the ownership group led by Van Deusen, which has already opened two franchised locations of Urban Air in the Kansas City suburbs of Overland Park, Kansas, and Lenexa, Kansas, along with Indianapolis and Nashville.

For the second quarter, average rent for South County retail space was $12.96 per square foot, compared with the St. Louis average of $12.94, according to a Cushman & Wakefield report. Total retail vacancy in that area was 9.6% with total inventory of nearly 13 million square feet. That compares with a 6.8% overall vacancy rate in the St. Louis region, which has 66.3 million square feet of retail space.

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