Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

Possible Redevelopment Ahead for East End Property

Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

Possible Redevelopment Ahead for East End Property

Article excerpt

Redevelopment plans may be in store for the long-vacant commercial building on the East End. The Charleston Urban Renewal Authority approved a proposal Wednesday to purchase and develop the property at 1601 Washington St. East. The two-story property is located at the southwest corner of Elizabeth and Washington streets across from the Bluegrass Kitchen.

Executive Director Jim Edwards wouldn't name the group interested in purchasing the building because negotiations are still underway.

The group, he said, "wants to completely redevelop the building, with commercial downstairs and residential upstairs.

The urban renewal authority purchased the 7,500 square-foot property in November 2013 for about $75,000, according to previous Gazette reports.

Edwards noted that while the proposal was approved, several steps must be taken before the purchase is finalized.

"We now have to write a detailed development agreement that lays out the whole purchase, what they're going to do and their time schedule, he said.

The authority also voted to reject a new proposal by McKinley Properties.

The firm entered into an agreement with the authority in February to purchase and develop the space at 170-178 Summers St., better known as the former home of B&B Loans.

The firm planned to renovate the building to house retail on the ground floor and office space on the second and third floors.

Edwards wouldn't disclose any details on the proposal because it's still in negotiations.

Since the agreement was formed, McKinley Properties sought bank financing, Edwards said.

"That has affected what they're willing and able to do. Once the bank gets involved, the bank controls the terms.

Edwards said the firm will need to revise its offer to acquire the property.

David McKinley, who heads the firm, said he's "confident we'll be able to overcome whatever issues are holding them back. …

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