One of those developers was Lamar Hunt, who moved his football team from Dallas-Fort Worth to Kansas City in 1963, renaming them the Kansas City Chiefs. The following year, he set up a storage facility within the empty caves mined by Midwest Precote (which he later purchased) and began leasing the space. Early tenants included Russell Stover Candy, Pillsbury and Ford Motor Company, who needed somewhere to park their excess vehicles. In 1985, Hunt, along with partner Jack Steadman, merged three companies into Hunt Midwest Enterprises, Inc. The caves were christened SubTropolis sometime in the 1990s.
When Kamps first began working in property management at SubTropolis in 1985, it was just 2 million square feet of developed space. The mining ended in 2012 and today the developed underground caves total 7.4 million square feet – the size of 42 Arrowhead Stadiums, they like to say – with plans this year to expand to more than 8 million. There is also an above ground development, which Hunt Midwest shares with several other businesses. “What’s really ecologically interesting is that we had the property, we developed it above ground, we mined it and we developed it underground,” says Kamps. “Let’s say we have the largest green roof in the world.”