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December 29, 2010

Comments

Johnney

That's great news! Go Josh Parker and no public money at risk too! Wow, who would have thought this was possible with all the wrangling between Greenfire and the City for the past 3+ years. I guess when your project has sound financials and a business plan, it can get financed albeit with Stim Bonds, but that's pretty good! Now I'm hoping the project will execute and hopefully without too much street closure time...

Will Wilson

More of this! Less of that 751 Assemblage-style growth!

I hope the Chesterfield plans also call for urban open space: Trees and other features that provide social and environmental benefits.

Jonn

What is up with the Parkside condos develoment by the farmer's market? The sign says something funny like... construction begins late 2010! Nope.

I'll be shocked if that ever begins construction. It would be a nice locale for a coffee shop...conveniently on my walk to work.

Bull City Rising

@Jonn -- They have a solid team behind them; Hank Scherich of Measurement Inc. is the site owner and has legit money in the deal, and I know some of the folks working on the development.  I actually think it is a good location and can work well, particularly since Measurement would seem a reasonable bet to fill office space.  The big question is, how soon will the market be there for 25 condos?  It took Greenfire, what, 18 months to sell out the Kress before the bust, with half as many units.  Still, I think the odds are better for Parkside -- especially since Scherich is, I assume, working with his own patient dollars here, not leveraged with loans, and can wait for the market.

Jonn

Well, thats awesome to hear that there's a serious team behind that one. Let's start putting in requests for those retail spaces.

1. Awesome coffee shop
2. Art supply store (we don't have any!)
3. Creative sandwich shop (in the vein of Neals/Toast)
4. Amazing burritos (let's recruit flaming amy's from wilmington)
5. Great comic shop focused on underground/indie/graphic novels

Okay so i just designed a block of businesses tailor-made for me. Let's go with these.

joe

great news.

other requests for retail that seem both needed and safe bets to be successful...

-by the slice pizza joint
-shoe store (a la TOPS in Asheville)

Most importantly, a full service, six day a week BIKE SHOP that stocks parts (and does not say "we can order that for you")

Todd P

This is great news for downtown Durham - glad to see this moving forward. Getting the huge "new cigarrette factory" re-developed is a big win for Durham.

justadurhamite

This is great news! Glad to see more downtown space going into good use and escape demolition.

Just as a side note, while my knowledge of urban development is quite limited, I wish that more of these up and coming apartments in the urban core were available to various income levels. They all seem to be geared towards high-income young singles or 2 income couples w/ no kids. Not that there's anything wrong with that, with the university nearby and all, but I wish that places to live downtown were not quite so exclusive.

Again, I'm not really informed on all that goes into development of such properties and I'm sure there are many factors to consider.

AR

I thought Josh got his undergrad degree at Central. Anyway- go Josh!

Rob Gillespie

@JAD-
When Josh first announced that he was going after the building, he mentioned an affordable housing component. If I remember correctly, he was committing 20% of units, but I could be wrong on that.

Having a developer voluntarily commit to such a provision is a great thing, and hopefully more developers will do so in the future.

CaliDurhamite

Very good news! This project is really going to change the landscape of walkability and bring more energy to the heart of downtown. It's exciting to live in an area with such vibrant changes and growth. Kudos to Parker!

Erik Landfried

What's Plan B for parking? Where is this nearby surface lot?

Bull City Rising

@Erik -- South of Brightleaf Sq., west of Gregson.

Beibar

Is that the brightleaf square parking lot?

Bull City Rising

@Beibar: I believe they found space to the west of that; its not the BLS employee parking per se.

Mike

@Joe
From what I've heard there might be a bike shop
moving in to the Clear View Glass shop building.
Fingers crossed.

Beibar

@BCR - Interesting - that's a pretty long walk for the residents. I think parking in that area, which is already a little hairy, will become a nightmare. Are they proposing to build a deck?

Bull City Rising

Theres already a deck on Fuller St, but its controlled by the folks who developed phase 1/2 of West Village -- it was actually built with Chesterfield in mind, with the Laettner/Davis team thinking they would be developing the Chesterfield too.  Ideally youll end up seeing Chesterfield residents renting spaces there in the Fuller St. deck.

Free your mind and your ass will follow

the plan B parking lot (south of brightleaf, west of gregson) is less than a 5 minute walk from the Chesterfield via Peabody Street.

a long way if you hop in your car 2-3x a day perhaps...

if you use your car 2-3 x a week hardly an inconvenience (especially compared to the cost of gasoline/maintenance driving 300 miles a week, etc)

Not everyone is a slave to hopping in a car every single time they leave the house.

Here's to more urban planning and less auto-centric suburban sprawl.

Beibar

The reality is that most of the residents will park on the streets surrounding the Chesterfield, including down Peabody to Morgan Imports and beyond, the Brightleaf lots, and along Duke Street around the corner to Pop's and Posh. People are lazy and don't want to walk 5 minutes. You can't even get the West Village folks to park in the Fuller deck. I'm really happy that they are doing something useful with that space, but I'd like to see a more thoughtful plan for parking. Any viable office space, retail/restaurant looking to go in there will need adequate parking. Is there an online resource where citizens can review their proposal?

Jonathan Parker

Great news! While real estate has flat-lined in general, apartments are hot right now. Especially in a region that continues to grow like ours, developers are starting to line up for the next wave of projects.

Given Chesterfield's location so close to both Duke and the west edge of downtown in a diverse, walkable urban area, I'd bet a majority of units will be filled by 20s/30s single types, who may not view an off-site parking space as a hindrance. Drive or--gasp--occasionally take transit to work and walk downtown or bike/take the BCC to East Campus or Ninth Street for groceries/coffee/dinner. Plus, as others have pointed out, there's a decent amount of on-street parking nearby.

Structured parking is very expensive to build from scratch--in the range of $20-30k/space or more--and generates no revenue streams. As more and more developers see the success that Chesterfield will almost certainly enjoy, it may provide a blueprint comparable for other truly urban multistory projects downtown to follow suit with a low-parked product.

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