The days of a stalled student housing project that has become an eyesore across from North Carolina State University are numbered. Raleigh real estate firm CityPlat and Maryland investment firm Modalia Capital bought the property this month and plan to redevelop it.
The partially constructed and graffiti-ridden structure at 2510 Hillsborough Street has been unoccupied for close to a decade. It is on the campus-focused commercial corridor between a Target store and buildings that house the restaurants Pisco Mar, Shanghai Express and Nara Lounge.
“We’ve been eyeing it up for years because it has been sitting there unfinished for years in a tremendous location,” Pat Moore, a principal at CityPlat, told The News & Observer. “Other developers have kept their eyes on it, too. We pursued it at the right time with the right idea with how to make it work.”
Developers plan to rebuild it as a three-story restaurant, bar and lounge development with various tenants. CityPlat and Modalia Capital closed on the site for $1.25 million earlier this month, Moore said. Current zoning allows for a building up to seven stories.
Student housing or a hotel was a possibility, but “the site’s pretty confined in terms of its size and parking availability so we didn’t want to overdo what we could do. We just didn’t like the marketability for that, it was too small to do that kind of product,” Moore said.
Concerns about the site being an eyesore and even unsafe came when a crane was erected on the site in 2015 and kept up for around four years for the construction of what was to be the Hillsborough Lofts student apartments. The project stalled when the developer got into a legal dispute with the construction company it hired, The N&O reported previously.
Since the building structure is already present, the project is already farther along and will require less time to redevelop, Moore said. Development work and preparing plans to be submitted to the city is underway with completion projected for 2022.
“Ever since we bought it we’ve gotten interest from both local and national (possible tenants) but nobody’s been named quite yet,” he said.
CityPlat’s bullish real estate activity in Raleigh is also taking place on opposite ends of Hillsborough Street, with a seven-story student housing project planned for the intersection of Hillsborough and Bagwell Avenue near campus.
CityPlat and Modalia Capital previously bought a 0.2-acre parking lot at 504 Hillsborough Street envisioned for building up to 12 stories high in downtown.
The firm’s plans also include possibly building a tower of up to 40 stories downtown on the site of the Legends Nightclub on South Harrington and West Hargett streets.