Greenville closes deal on Dickinson Ave. project

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – A $32 million housing, office and retail project is in store for the corner of Dickinson Avenue and Reade Circle.

The City of Greenville said it completed the sale of the property on Thursday with Sidewalk Greenville LLC for $1,505,744, the appraised value of the property.

Sidewalk intends to construct a development to be called University Edge/Dickinson Lofts on the property. On-site work is scheduled to begin on April 3, 2017. Plans currently call for 86 premium student housing units for University Edge and 58 units catering to young professionals as part of Dickinson Lofts.

It first stemmed from the Dickinson Avenue Revitalization Plan, and planners now see it impacting the entire Uptown area.

“This area is starting to build up, and people are finally starting to wander down Dickinson Avenue,” said Justin Smithwick, the general manager of  Trollingwood Tapwood and Brewery on Dickinson Avenue.

Smithwick said he has noticed a change in Uptown since their arrival a year ago.

“In the time that we’ve been here, I’ve seen so much revitalization already going,” said Smithwick. “We’ve got another brewery coming to town, town restaurants (and) a farmers market.”

A parking lot was purchased from the city to build the facility.

“It will encompass 20,000 square feet of office, retail and dining,” said Jim Blount, project partner. “It will have Uptown Greenville’s first market-rate apartments.”

Blount said there will be space for students and young professionals.

“Once this project gets going and people start living here and eating here and dining here, and you have office spaces filled, it will just be a trickle-down effect all the way through Dickinson avenue to the rest of Uptown Greenville,” Blount said.

Smithwick is looking forward to seeing new neighbors.

“We need people that live in downtown — who walk to the places they go,” said Smithwick. “Greenville has great walkability from here to downtown. That’s one of the reasons I love living here.”

A big concern with a project this size is the loss of parking, and in the meantime city leaders are looking into more parking options.

The city said there is a contractual commitment for the property to be developed as a mixed-use development containing a minimum of 20,000 square feet of leasable office and retail space and at least 120 total residential units with a minimum of 45 non-student market rate professional units and a 1-to-1 ratio of student rental housing units and non-student market rate professional units above 120 units.

“The Sidewalk Development project will be the third prominent housing complex to be developed and located in the Uptown District,” City Manager Barbara Lipscomb said. “However, unlike the other two projects, which feature primarily student housing, this one will also feature market-rate housing as well as significant retail space.”

The contract calls for the non-student market-rate professional units to be different from the student rental housing units based on the number of beds in the unit, the amenities, and the interior finishes. The exterior of the building can be no less than 40 percent masonry can’t include vinyl. The development will be a five-story structure.

The project is slated to break ground in early April.


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