PROPERTY MATTERS: Green Truck upgrade, New restaurant proposed for former city lot, and Starland Dairy update

Rendering of proposed exterior improvements by SHAH Architecture & Interiors as submitted with plan.
Rendering of proposed exterior improvements by SHAH Architecture & Interiors as submitted with plan.
Rendering of proposed building at 1705 Abercorn. St. as submitted to the HPC

Green Truck Pub looking to dump building’s 'fast food' look, upgrade outdoor seating

Turns out, eating outdoors is nice, even when breathing too close to your table mate is not your primary concern. And the experience of inhaling a grass-fed beef burger outside could soon be even more enjoyable at the Green Truck Pub. The owners are planning to improve the 12-year-old restaurant’s outdoor ascetics and seating accommodations, after first introducing the ability to enjoy a meal outdoors as a safety measure during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We just love having the patio so much and we want to make it nicer for people who are sitting out there,” said co-owner Whitney Shephard, who opened the restaurant with her husband Josh Yates in 2011.

The project’s architect recently submitted renovation plans for the restaurant at 2430 Habersham St. in Savannah’s Streetcar Historic District. The improvements consist of external improvements designed to improve the look of the building and better cater to outdoor diners and those waiting outside for a table.

The improvements would replace the current setup, essentially consisting of a tarp and tables, by adding a covered patio with wooden trellises and outdoor fans to combat Savannah’s hot summers. The proposed landscaping, green screens and removal of the sloping mansard roof will also help shed the building’s “dumpy fast food” look from its past life, Shephard said. The drive-thru window is proposed to go as well.

The project is expected to go before the Historic Preservation Commission for consideration in April. If approved, Shephard said they hope to complete the improvements by September.

New building proposed to house restaurant on former city lot

The developer behind a planned affordable housing complex on former city property recently submitted plans to construct the commercial component of the project.

The developer is proposing to build a one-story building for use as a restaurant on the site at 1705 Abercorn St. in the Streetcar Historic District, where a small parking lot currently exists.

Located at the corner of 33rd Lane and Abercorn, the proposed building  is in a mixed-use zoning district and directly adjacent to a 2-story building used as a law office.

Such single story commercial projects within the district are common, according to the petition submitted by Greenline Architecture’s submission.

“Historical maps for this area also reflect a history of one and two-story buildings,” the petition states. “The design of the new building will blend into the same historical patterning.”

The plan is expected to go before the Historic Preservation Commission in April. 

The 1,828-square-foot lot is one of three parcels the Pinyan/Procida Development Group acquired from the city for $750,000 in late 2021, as approved that February by the Savannah City Council. The city sold the properties to the development group for the purpose of building affordable housing after the city’s Code Compliance Department building at the site was destroyed in a fire in 2020. In addition to the housing component and parking on the two larger parcels, the approved plan also included commercial space at the site of the proposed restaurant.

The developer is now planning to submit another application to obtain competitive state low-income housing tax credits for the planned 42-unit apartment complex, after two failed attempts over the past two years.

Starland Dairy update

After years of planning, Maggie Fuller said this month that she and her husband, Nate are excited to finally start renovating the historic Starland Dairy building at 2425 Bull St., which the couple is converting into an 8-room inn with a bookstore, coffee shop, ice cream shop and restaurant. (Plans for a brewery have been scrapped.) With plans dating back to at least 2017, they are now hoping to open the business in early 2024, Fuller said. Built in 1932, the Starland Dairy supplied milk to Savannah residents through the 1980s. The rehabilitation project was approved by the Historic Preservation Commission in August 2020. 

About The Author

Eric Curl

When not wandering the streets with his canine companion, Eric Curl is probably reading building permits and meeting agendas. He writes Property Matters on to share what he finds. You can find the column, along with other stories, cartoons and quizzes about local matters at
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