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Posted on: June 14, 2017

Marketing efforts for White Mill site ‘encouraging’


The Danville Industrial Development Authority officially owns the White Mill property on Memorial Drive, with the final paperwork signed Tuesday morning, Corrie Teague Bobe, assistant director of economic development, said.


The IDA announced its plans to purchase the property for $3 million in March. Danville City Council voted in April to appropriate $1.5 million from the general fund to go to the IDA toward the purchase of the White Mill property, which includes eight parcels. The purchase agreement calls for a first payment this year and a second $1.5 million to be paid in 2017-18.


Also on Tuesday, the IDA met and voted to authorize a post-closing agreement to have the final appraisal done by White Mill LLC, Royal Demo LLC or Gibbs International and to prorate the utility bills for the property.


Bobe said recently marketing efforts for the site have been “encouraging,” and there is money in the budget for the upcoming year to create a master plan for developing River District property along the north and south sides of the Dan River.


Those plans include extending the Riverwalk Trail, creating a water feature in the canal in front of the White Mill and find out what they can do with the enclosed bridge that connected the White Mill to the Long Mill years ago.


Many ideas were spawned for the covered bridge during a Span the Dan project headed by the Danville Regional Foundation in 2013, but those plans were put on hold until funding could be found.


Bobe said the IDA also will have to work with the state’s Department of Historic Resources to reuse the covered bridge in a way that maintains its historical aspects, or it won’t get state and federal tax credit assistance to cover the cost of renovating the bridge.


The massive White Mill building is unlikely to attract a single user, Bobe said.


“We’ll be working on a mixed-use concept,” Bobe said.


Also Tuesday, the IDA approved several actions to move the building of the SGS Kyocera facility in Cyber Park, across the street from the Institute for Advanced Learning and Research.


Those actions included approval of a design-build contract between the IDA and Blair Construction and loan commitment of $3.8 million from American National Bank to finance the project.


A new parking lot of Craghead Street — behind the 500 block and stretching to Lynn Street — also received attention from the IDA, which to create easements between IDA and Rick Barker Properties; to redraw the property lines for 523-523 Lynn St.; and to rework some retaining walls on the site.



Denice Thibodeau reports for the Danville Register & Bee. Contact her at dthibodeau@registerbee.com or (434) 791-7985.


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