Durham County will consider purchasing several properties totaling over $20 million during a Monday night meeting.
The largest property on the table is a strip mall on over 17 acres with an empty grocery store location intended as a new home for the Durham County Board of Elections.
The Shoppes of Hope Valley was built in 2002 on Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway at Roxboro Street, anchored by a Kroger with 25 additional storefronts and a 590-space parking lot.
Kentucky-based real estate developer BC Wood Properties owns the shopping center through an LLC. A $12.1 million contract was negotiated, records show, with BC Wood agreeing to first replace the roof and HVAC systems and seal coat the parking lot.
Director of Elections Derek Bowens said the Board of Elections is currently split between two locations: a main office downtown and a warehouse on South Alston Avenue.
“What this will do is consolidate our spaces into one facility and also give us the additional space we need for our ever-expanding operations,” Bowens said.
Bowens said if approved, the move to the vacant 55,000-square-foot space could happen next year.
The agenda item said there are “no current plans for any changes to the remainder of the shopping center.” Sixteen of the storefronts are leased to a variety of tenants, including Family Dollar, restaurants, cellphone companies and the N.C. Division of Motor Vehicles.
The county is considering a limited obligation bond or bank financing.
Bull City United could move into former Boys & Girls Club
The county will also vote on whether to spend $6 million to buy the former Boys & Girls Club in the historic Hayti neighborhood.
The two parcels there total 2.61 acres and last sold in 2019 to an LLC registered to private investor Pablo Reiter for just over $2 million.
Bull City United, a violent crime and gang intervention program funded by the county and city, had initially hoped to lease the vacant building sandwiched between East Pettigrew Street and the Durham Freeway.
“Before a lease could be negotiated, the owner made the decision to sell the property rather than enter a long-term lease,” county staff wrote in an agenda item.
Bull City United sends “violence interrupters” into some neighborhoods to help resolve conflicts, identify and help treat people at high risk of violent behavior, and reshape social norms around gun violence. The public health department launched the program in 2016.
The county is similarly considering a limited obligation bond or bank financing.
A third property is also set for purchase — a tract of land next to Durham Technical Community College.
The nearly 6 acres were privately owned by Randall and Leslie Brame, who gave Durham Tech the first option to buy and negotiated a $2.3 million price.
The money would be drawn from the fund the county uses to pay its debts.
The Board of County Commissioners meets at 7 p.m. Monday and will vote on all three purchases.
This story was originally published August 8, 2022 5:43 PM.
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