Lorenzen Realty completed purchase of the 19th-century building at 822 Washington St. about two weeks ago.
The historic building, built in 1890, had been a bar and restaurant for years, and formerly featured five apartments on the upper level. But it recently had been sitting vacant.
Building co-owner Justin Lorenzen said the company had its eye on the property for some time and felt it would make a good spot for townhouses. The plan calls for five 2,000-square-foot townhouses that include a full basement and two indoor parking spots.
They plan to use stainless-steel appliances and granite counter tops, he said. Developers plan to partition off the balcony, giving each unit a private space, and have a gated parking lot for visitors.
The project’s estimated cost hasn’t yet been determined. Mr. Lorenzen said the cost will influence rental rates some, but the target is $1,000 to $1,300 a month.
The number of people living downtown has grown significantly in recent years and demand remains high. Mr. Lorenzen said he has been told that the housing occupancy rate downtown is around 95 percent.
“We feel really confident we’ll have people wanting to move in and rent,” Mr. Lorenzen said. “I’ve already had people wanting to put deposits down to hold a unit. It’s great to have that kind of enthusiasm. We’re excited. I think there’s a lot of people in their early to mid-20s and empty-nesters that want to be downtown.”
Lorenzen Realty plans to meet with architects later this month to finalize plans and hopes to begin talking with contractors early next year. Construction is expected to take five to six months.
“There’s still quite a lot of work, but the bones are good and the roof is good, so that helps out dramatically,” Mr. Lorenzen said.
Contact Tyrel Linkhorn at: firstname.lastname@example.org or 419-724-6134.