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Kannapolis sells downtown property for mixed-use development, townhomes

KANNAPOLIS — The next steps in downtown’s redevelopment will include more than 128 townhomes and the conversion of the block around the Gem Theatre into shops and apartments.

The Kannapolis City Council on Monday voted to sell 11 downtown buildings to Lansing Melbourne Group, headquartered in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, for a price of $450,000. The development group then plans to invest $2.6 million in the block.

Lansing Melbourne also is developing a mixed-use demonstration project, nicknamed VIDA, downtown. The buildings are in the 100 block of West Avenue and 100 block of West A Street.

Meanwhile, the site of the former Cannon Mills Plant No. 4 — between Dale Earnhardt Boulevard, West F Street and South Main Street — will be turned into 128 townhomes that will sell for a price between $200,000 and $250,000.

Kannapolis will sell the property for $896,000 to a team of Sherwood Development and Shiloh Church Development Group, which will invest an estimated $4.18 million in infrastructure such as sidewalks and utilities. The townhomes will have alley-loaded garages.

Speaking to the City Council on Monday night, Kent Gregory, of Lansing Melbourne Group, said he had commitment letters from Hollywood Burger, a steak and seafood restaurant, a bike shop, a gym, a men’s and women’s hair salon, an ice cream shop and a grab-and-go fresh food restaurant.

Gregory said he’s talking to a bar operator that has a location near Kannapolis about putting a bar in the buildings his company has purchased on West Avenue and West A Street.

Those are in addition to a brewery that’s already committed to move downtown.

“This is an important block of buildings in Kannapolis, and we look forward to making these historic spaces come alive with new businesses and people,” Gregory said.

Gregory said he hopes to have Hollywood Burger in operation by the time the Kannapolis Cannon Ballers “throw out their first pitch” in April.

Nine apartments will be located on the second floor of the buildings in the block around the Gem Theatre.

City officials say the remainder of block one, which contains properties on North Main Street and West A Street, will be sold in a phased approach. The goal, city officials said, is not to oversaturate the real estate market. The city plans to retain ownership of the Gem Theatre.

Meanwhile, the townhome development will be known as Pennant Square. It will be an investment of $25 million to $30 million. The team of Sherwood Development and Shiloh Church Development Group, which have worked in Cabarrus County and the Charlotte region, will contract with TriPointe Homes, a national company headquartered in California.

Joe Untz, one of the developers, told the council he feels fortunate to be part of Kannapolis’ downtown redevelopment.

Untz said the townhomes will include a park surrounded by trees in the middle of the development.

Also on Monday, the Kannap0lis City Council gave Temerity Baseball and the Kannapolis Cannon Ballers permission to use a former Wells Fargo branch for temporary offices.

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