Work continuing on giving downtown building a new appearance

TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) – Work is continuing on painting the exterior of a 17-story building in downtown Topeka.

The Townsite Tower building at 534 S. Kansas Ave. is being transformed from its original sandstone color to an iron-ore color.

Work on the majority of the south and west sides of the building appeared to be completed on Monday morning.

An adjacent parking garage on the north side of the building — just south of 5th and Kansas Avenue — remained its original sandstone color, with painting set to take place on that portion of the property, as well.

Building owner Ken Schmanke told 13 NEWS in June that crews at that time had been painting the building for three or four weeks as weather permits. He said in June that the project was expected to take two to three more months.

Schmanke, who is president and chief executive officer of K1 Realty LLC, purchased the building in July 2020.

At the time of the purchase, Schmanke said he was looking to make some positive changes with the property.

Construction on the building was completed in September 1970, according to online records.

When it opened, the building housed First National Bank of Topeka. It later housed Bank IV and the Bank of America.

It also was home to the Top of the Tower restaurant, a fine-dining establishment on the top floor of the building that offered a panoramic view of the Topeka area.

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Saturday June 11, 2022