Development Beat: Teardown Tuesday

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Tuesday, September 20, 2016

We’ve got a double-dose of demolitions to look at today, and as it happens, both of them are on New Bern.

The first of them is set to take place at the Shell gas station at 3704 New Bern Avenue, where an existing car wash will be torn down. The property was purchased in July of this year by a company named Sakti LLC for $700,000. A month earlier, an ABC permit was issued for a business listed as “Aryans LLC.” Lest you get the wrong idea, the owner/registered agent for both LLCs is one Gauravkumar Navinchandra Patel.

Oddly enough, the project name listed on the permits is “Microtel Hotel” — but we were unable to find anything to suggest that a hotel is actually getting built here. According to State records, the ABC permit issued in June was for “Malt Beverage Off Premise” and “Unfortified Wine Off Premise.” We don’t know of too many hotels that carry malt liquor or fortified wine, so it seems more likely that the property will remain a gas station, minus the old carwash.

Before it was a Shell Station, the gas station at 3704 New Bern was a Texaco

Before it was a Shell Station, the gas station at 3704 New Bern was a Texaco

Further supporting this theory is the fact that a phone number for Patel found on the incorporation documents for Sakti LLC leads back to another Shell gas station, this one in High Point, NC. We were unable to reach him in time for publication, but will update if any additional information is received.

The $3,000 demolition of the car wash will be handled by Southern Home Care & Garden out of Savannah, GA.

While also located on New Bern, the second demolition for today is of a much more residential nature: a boardinghouse, to be specific. The two-story, 2,408 square-foot structure was first built in 1930, and was purchased by Tephra LLC in December of 2015 for $145,000. According to county records, it had no heating or air conditioning and “adequate” plumbing.

It was apparently subdivided into six separate units. We don’t imagine there’s many recent former residents who would be particularly sorry to see this place go.

617 New Bern Avenue

Wake County

617 New Bern Avenue

The $15,000 demolition will be handled by Five Horizons Construction, a name that struck a chord. Developer Stuart Cullinan, a really nice guy we’ve had the pleasure of meeting a few times, has a company named Five Horizons Development. Cullinan is also working on a New Bern Avenue condominium project. Was this demolition the first step?

Nope. we reached out to Cullinan to see if the 617 New Bern Avenue demolition was tied to a condominium project at 527, 529 & 531 New Bern Avenue.

“We plan to build an 1,800 square foot home,” at 617, unrelated to the condo project, Cullinan said.

It should be noted that while the ownership style of the units being developed by Cullinan in conjunction with former City Manager Russ Allen is condominium, the design/layout is town home. Here’s how Cullinan explained it to us when we first wrote about the initial site plans back in March:

“Why that is, is you cannot build a town home in this overlay district; it’s like Mordecai, it has a minimum lot size and that applies to everything including town homes. We’re gonna build something that looks and feels just like a town home.”

Cullinan said each three-story building would house five two-bedroom, two-and-a-half bath units that total around 1,500 square feet each. The first story would be a one-car garage, with living space above that and the bedrooms on the third floor.

“They’re all more or less the same layout, with covered parking behind and a little open space in the back; very similar to the 10 at South Person site plan layout,” he told the Record earlier this year.

Promotional materials for the Ten at South Person, a project Cullinan compared the New Bern condos to

DHIC

Promotional materials for the Ten at South Person, a project Cullinan compared the New Bern condos to

While this not-so-tragic teardown of a historic New Bern Avenue home is not related to this exciting condo project, we’re still excited to see what Five Horizons comes up with.

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