October 6, 2017

Goodbye Queen City


FOR SALE: 84,814 square feet of prime commercial real estate land (once the old motel buildings are removed by the current owner) on heavily trafficked U.S. 24 Highway, just a little over a mile east of the Harry S. Truman Presidential Library. This is a GREAT retail development opportunity for investors wanting to get in on the ground floor of the inevitable Truman Library Corridor revitalization project. Interested investors should contact Wally Bredemeier at (816) 302-8554 of CEAH Real Estate.

   In the years before I-70 began carrying motorists east and west across the country, U.S. Route 24 Highway, known as Independence Avenue in these parts back then, was a major transportation route for people traveling by car.

   Sometime around 1950, Queen City Court opened along this road as a first-rate motor lodge, offering air conditioning, television sets, telephones, a swimming pool, and just about any amenity a weary traveler could hope for in a place to take a break from the road or a place to stay while visiting President Harry Truman's hometown.

In 1964 the motel was bought by Mr. and Mrs. Cleo Smith and the name was changed to the Queen City Motel. 

Around the same time, the Queen City Restaurant was opened next door, where the Fraternal Order of Eagles building is now. The restaurant was one of the few restaurants in Independence to be open 24 hours a day, and was popular for its fried chicken and steak dinners. The Queen City Restaurant closed its doors in 1974.

After the Sisk family sold the motel in the 1980s, the ownership of Queen City changed hands a number of times and the quality of the 24- Highway landmark diminished over the decades that followed.

Queen City was finally closed by the Sugar Creek Police Department in 2015. Numerous complaints about criminal activity going on there led to an investigation conducted by multiple law enforcement agencies. On the morning of July 16, 2015, police raided the motel, making 17 arrests and closing Queen City once and for all. Demolition is planned to begin any day now.

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