Built in 1910, the Livestock Exchange Building was seen as a fortress of commerce for Kansas City and the western territory. With 475 offices, the building housed the Stockyards Company, telegraph offices, banks, restaurants, railroad and packing house representatives, and government agencies. It was the largest livestock exchange building in the world and one of the largest office buildings in Kansas City.

The stockyards had become an independent company in 1871 with 13.5 acres. Over time it grew to 207 acres and housed the current Livestock Exchange Building. In 1923 the Kansas City stockyards set a world record for a days’ receipts of cattle, 60,206 head. The handling capacity of the yards was 70,000 cattle, 50,000 hogs, 50,000 sheep, and 5,000 horses and mules.

By 1945 the Kansas City livestock market was an institution of national importance. But the up and coming feedlot operations and auction sales reduced cattle receipts in the stockyards. In 1984 the stockyards were sold to a group of investors to try to save the yards, and by 1991 the stockyards held its last auction.

The building received a $13 million renovation beginning in 1991 and then CEO and now owner of the Livestock Exchange Building, Bill Haw, had a vision for the area of low rise high value commercial buildings such as Gateway and Butler Manufacturing World Headquarters.

The Livestock Exchange Building has endured fire, flood and changing economies to once again become a thriving successful place to do business in this century.

 

copyright © livestock exchange building, 2004