Developers on Thursday received the city design panel’s go-ahead to build two large-scale, mixed-use projects that would bring nearly 700 new apartment units to downtown Columbia.
Greenville-based Homes Urban received the panel’s OK to start work on the first two mixed-use buildings of the long-awaited development at Huger and Gervais streets.
Plans for the up-to-$100 million project on the former Kline Iron and Steel Co. property call for a 140-room hotel, roughly 350 apartments and space for stores and restaurants.
But those plans hit a snag with the design panel in September. City design staff asked for more detail on designs for the development’s streetfront facades, and for more information on how the developer planned to screen a proposed parking garage.
Homes Urban partner E.J. Mondor said after working with city staff members during the past few months to resolve those issues, it was a relief to receive approval Thursday. “We were very pleased with the relationship we’ve developed with them in making it work,” Mondor said.
The Beach Co. of Charleston also received design approval for the last two buildings in its planned $58 million expansion of the CanalSide apartment complex in the Vista.
The project will include nearly 340 residential units and will nearly double the number of residents at CanalSide, currently at about 600, the developer has said. Plans for the CanalSide expansion also ran into trouble with the panel in December, but representatives from The Beach Co. in January met with city design staff and panel members to iron out design concerns.
“I think that’s really where we hashed everything out,” said Ned Miller, The Beach Co. development manager overseeing the project. “I think the majority of their comments from those meetings were very positive to the project, and we’re ending up with a better building.”
Homes Urban expects to begin construction on Kline City Center this spring. The Beach Co. expects to begin construction this summer. Both developers said they plan to complete construction in two years.