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Kevin McGowan
Kevin McGowan

Former partner sues McGowan over Heer's project

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A former business partner has sued Heer's developer Kevin McGowan, claiming he is owed payment for his work on the downtown Springfield project.

McGowan and Nat Walsh, both based in St. Louis, took on the Heer's project together in summer 2007 but dissolved their partnership later that year. McGowan then formed Blue Urban LLC and bought the building from the city in November 2007.

Walsh now is seeking a $100,000 consultant fee that he says McGowan promised him regardless of the status of the project, according to a report last week in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Walsh also is asking for pre-judgment interest from Oct. 1, 2008.

The two developers attended a settlement conference Monday in St. Louis County Court. Another settlement conference has been set for June 24, according to the case filing.

"There were services that (Walsh) was supposed to perform and then I had an obligation to pay. Later on in the summer we'll figure out who owes who what," McGowan told SBJ, declining to disclose further details. "The suit that Nat has brought forward does not affect the Heer's building at all."

Redevelopment of the Heer's building has stalled, first hampered by complications with a redesign of the square on which it sits, and later delayed by a frozen credit market.

McGowan has since scrapped his plans for luxury condominiums in the building and is seeking a Department of Housing and Urban Development-backed loan to build apartments instead. Approval for HUD financing could come in May or June, McGowan said, and construction on the Heer's could begin as early as the fall. He expects to submit a revised project timetable to the city this month.[[In-content Ad]]

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