Celebrating A New Investor – 131 and 135 SE Main Street – A New Life

Easter Week: Rocky Mount, NC – Beautiful Day on Main Street. Gorgeous pink Iris blooming in my garden. The gift of Lent this year; to realize that I need to stip away things, that in the end, do not matter. Monday night’s Council meeting (4-22-19) threatened to reel me in with the “How dare you” speech, and what followed afterward, but today I am sitting on a Main Street bench celebrating a new investor who is helping save Main Street. You and I, we must keep our eye on the ball and let those in charge of investigating bad manners and self-serving decisions bring the bad gals and guys to justice.  (Definition of keeping one’s eye on the ball: to continue thinking about or giving attention to something important: to stay focused.)

Join Andrew Clark, Rental Property Investor from Raleigh, NC sitting with me on a bench out in front of his two newly acquired commercial buildings on SE Main Street. Andrew lives in Raleigh with his wife, who is a scientist at RPT, and a new December born baby. He was drawn to the affordability of our Main Street property for investment.      Now, this is important!

Andrew shares with us: Active investors are all over Rocky Mount. I can personally attest to having friends who have in the last 18 months purchased 15 + downtown commercial buildings, 150+ single family homes, and many multifamily units. My wife and I bought two commercial properties on Main St (Music City & Lights buildings). We are currently doing full gut rehabs on both buildings financed by a local Rocky Mount bank. We will have two 2000sqft+ luxury lofts on the second floors and two commercial spaces on the bottom. We plan to attract restaurants on the bottom of each of these buildings.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Rocky Mount story as seen and told through Andrew’s eyes calls to other investors and should energize us anew to believe in the revitalization of downtown. Rocky Mount has opened its 165,000 sqft indoor Event Center which can seat 4000+ people. It is literally 2.5 blocks from my buildings. That will become an economic powerhouse of the downtown area. The Event Center is NCAA certified, can host 16 volleyball courts, 8 basketball courts, music concerts, and has a video arcade, a ropes course. All of this is walkable to downtown.

Rocky Mount Mill has purchased entire streets and renovated all the houses (front porch rockers and kegerator included in all houses), they have 60+ condos they are currently renting/renovating inside the mill, and they have a community of 20+ TINY HOUSES they will be renting out soon. It not only sounds wonderful when Andrew talks about Rocky Mount, but it is wonderful. This is a fraction of other properties and projects that are being worked on in and around Main Street. (MacHaven is opening soon, one of the stars in Rocky Mount’s architectural crown.) We are blessed to have investors like Andrew Clark, saving two more buildings – Hallaluh!

NEXT TIME – Paul Bynum Kyser and family and the Kyser Drugstore

 

About Stepheny Forgue Houghtlin

Stepheny Forgue Houghtlin grew up in Evanston, IL. and is a graduate of the University of Kentucky. She is an author of two novels: The Greening of a Heart and Facing East. She lives, writes and gardens in NC. Visit her: Stephenyhoughtlin.com
This entry was posted in Economic Development in Rocky Mount NC, Preservation of Historic Commercial Buildings. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Celebrating A New Investor – 131 and 135 SE Main Street – A New Life

  1. M Taylor says:

    It makes me very happy to see a new investor that is actually doing something with the buildings he purchased and doing it in a timely manner. Many people purchased these buildings 1-2 years ago and are just sitting on them. My belief is that their intent is to wait and see what happens with the event center and downtown. They will either dump the buildings for cheap if the event center fails or drive up the resale price if downtown starts to thrive. I heard several buyers say it cost too much to gut the properties and start over and that they were only interested in the properties as an investment to rent out to someone who will do the work or flip them. The sale of the downtown properties was not thoroughly thought out in my opinion. There should have been some stipulations such as requiring that improvements begin within 12 months of the purchase and be completed within 24-30 months after purchase. There should have been an incentive offered by the city from the beginning of the process to jump start the initiative. There should have also been a stipulation or requirement that made sure all the store fronts were uniformed, as well as the signage. A lot of money was paid to outside consultants and surveyors and firms to tell the city what they should have already known. Restoration only requires looking back, studying photos, talking to the “customers” that will patronize these businesses. Here we are two plus years down the road and for the most part, downtown looks the same. We don’t need outside consultants. We could a committee of local, longtime residents (mature and professional, non political) to pitch ideas to the city. The result could have been much more punctual and i’m sure it would have been absolutely amazing!

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    • M Taylor-this comment has left me with eyes glistening! How come you have not been in charge of what is going on around here? Is your view too smart, too simple to understand? THANK YOU again. I often threaten to go downtown and stand in the middle of the street yelling out some latest idea I have. This time I am going to holler – – “Listen to M. Taylor for heaven’s sake” and let’s get this downtown fixed. I agree with everything you have put forth here. THANK YOU! Don’t desert this Main Street Rocky Mount blog, we all need you!

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