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City cancels deal to sell land to office-tower developer

Posted February 3, 2009

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— The City Council voted Tuesday to retain ownership of a site on Hillsborough Street where a developer had hoped to build a downtown tower.

Raleigh lawyer Ted Reynolds, the lead partner in Hillsborough Street Partners, developed plans for a 23-story mix of retail shops, a hotel and condominiums at the corner of Dawson and Hillsborough streets.

Hillsborough Street Partners was supposed to purchase the city-owned property for $4.5 million in December and have the foundation in place by Tuesday. The city sold adjacent property to the group in 2001.

Reynolds asked city officials for a six-month extension on the purchase, citing the slow economy. The City Council, which last summer gave Reynolds additional time to line up financing for the $65 million project, voted 5-3 to reject the latest request and terminate his purchase agreement.

The tower was to include 17,500 square feet of retail space, a 136-room hotel and 26 condos on the top floors.

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  • atc2 Feb 4, 2009

    Construction costs are ideal for development. Raleigh always seems to be waiting instead of being proactive. Development is much too slow, too many council members that prevent growth/density. What is the Downtown Raleigh Alliance doing to bring in new business and new companies (or HQ's)? Sounds like nothing. Is anyone responsible for downtown business development? Never hear any news on bus dev activity.

  • Armando de Cabana Boy Feb 4, 2009

    I haven't heard of anyone else chomping at the bit to build anything there.

  • oyid Feb 4, 2009

    Unbelievable! The City Council now turns its back on a man who has been at the forefront of revitalizing downtown Raleigh. For many years Ted Reynolds has devoted time, money and energy to improve our city. Regentrification requires vision, investment and risk. The guardians of Raleigh's city government should adjust their focus beyond the end of their noses. Their vision hasn't been exactly stellar. The uncertainty of our economic future should allow proven entrepeneurs a bit more latitude. Give the project the time it needs to unfold, rather than switching horses midstream and ending up with another city financed fiasco.

    Are you a lobbyist for this developer? The city gave them ample time. The city needs to hold the property until the market goes up and profit off the sale. Reynolds wasn't going to be built anyway...the developer just wanted an indefinite hold on the property. Raleigh Gov needs to start thinking like a business and protect tax-payer equity.

  • wwconnie Feb 3, 2009

    Unbelievable! The City Council now turns its back on a man who has been at the forefront of revitalizing downtown Raleigh.
    For many years Ted Reynolds has devoted time, money and energy to improve our city.
    Regentrification requires vision, investment and risk.
    The guardians of Raleigh's city government should adjust their focus beyond the end of their noses. Their vision hasn't been exactly stellar.
    The uncertainty of our economic future should allow proven entrepeneurs a bit more latitude. Give the project the time it needs to unfold, rather than switching horses midstream and ending up with another city financed fiasco.

  • atc2 Feb 3, 2009

    Now get rid of Empire. They do not know how to develop/build large projects. Enough wasted time, send out another RFP to major developers out of state.

  • Caveman93 Feb 3, 2009

    This story makes me sad :(