There are a lot of development plans in the works for Savannah, whether they are for new buildings or for repurposing old ones. Here is a summary of some of the latest.
Stay engaged Savannah,
Savannah’s Club One building poised for rehab
The historic Savannah building that houses the venue made famous by the late Lady Chablis (and her participation in “The Book”) could be getting a makeover.
The Historic District Board of Review recently approved the new owner’s plans to renovate the late 19th-centrury structure where Club One has been hosting drag queen performances since the 1980s.
The building at 301 West Bay St. was constructed in 1893 and the upper floors are in a state of disrepair and have been vacant for many years, according to the project report.
The plan includes adding an event space on the top floor, residential apartments on the second and third floors, and a food and beverage establishment on the ground level and in the basement. It is the owner’s intention to keep Club One as the commercial tenant on the lower floors for the foreseeable future, according to General Manager Travis Coles.
Hostel, restaurant & flexible space envisioned for 1930 Montgomery
The vacant building at 1930 Montgomery St. in Savannah’s Streetcar Historic District could one day serve as a “melting pot” of locals and travelers from around the world, under owner Charlie Crosby’s vision for the site.
That vision entails transforming the building into affordable lodging accommodations for visitors on a budget who are interested in meeting other people and creating experiences around their visit. While the concept is quite popular internationally, the US – particularly the southeast – has been a slower moving market to catch on, Crosby said. The NotSo Hostel in Charleston and Hostel in the Forest in Brunswick are two similar concepts in the region that Crosby said he intends to align with.
Crosby’s vision took one step forward last week, when the Historic Preservation Commission approved his plan to renovate the building and add a second story addition on the structure’s east side. The alterations and addition allow for five lodging units with private baths on the second floor, along with commercial space on the ground level.
Crosby said he intends for the ground level to be used as a restaurant and flexible space with varying types of programming – all of which would be open to the public.
“It’s something that doesn’t currently exist in the community here, and I believe the concept would bring a great deal of diversity and engagement opportunity” he said.
Developer behind Starland Village set to start new project at former 24e Design building
The new owner is moving forward with plans to renovate the historic downtown Savannah building that previously housed the 24e Design Co., following the sale of the property last year.
Foram Group recently submitted a building permit application for the project at 24 East Broughton St., which includes alterations and a roof-top addition. The plan involves the removal of the roof structure and reducing the height of the second floor to add the third story rooftop addition, as approved by the Savannah Historic District Board of Review in May.
The first floor will retain its existing retail use, while the second floor is expected to accommodate office space, according to the plans. A new assembly space is planned for the new third floor.
Sales records show two limited liability corporations purchased the building in Dec. 2021 for $3.3 million. The building permit application lists the owner as Foram Group, which is the developer behind the planned mixed-use Starland Village in the Streetcar Historic District south of downtown.
Known for unique furniture and home décor, 24e Design is now operating as an online store.
Developer fails to obtain tax credits for affordable housing on former city property
The developer planning to construct an affordable housing development on former city property failed for the second year in a row to obtain state low-income housing tax credits for the downtown Savannah project.
After scoring too low, Pinyan/Procida Development Group’s application was not among the recently announced recipients of the highly competitive tax credits issued annually by the Georgia Department of Community Affairs.
The credits were being sought to help finance a planned 42-unit affordable apartment complex at 1700 Drayton St., which the city sold to the development group for $750,000 last year. To support the project, the Savannah City Council authorized a $1.26 million loan to the developer in April that was contingent on the tax credits being awarded.
The failed application was the second attempt to get tax credits for the project following a failed application in 2021.
City spokesperson Keturah Greene-Luckett said the city was working with the developer to see how they could move the project forward.
Mercy Housing Southeast had better luck obtaining more than $1 million in tax credits for the renovation of the Heritage Place Apartments in Cuyler Brownville, another city supported project. The national nonprofit’s application was approved with the assistance of the city council, which approved a $560,000 loan to Mercy in May for the project.
Photos by Eric Curl