City looks to develop lot off Lake Street


The city’s Lot 30, off Lake Street, has the interest of Green Street Housing, whose chief operating manager would like to see an apartment and commercial development there.

David Layfield said his company has answered a request for proposal, or RFP, from the city and will meet with city leaders.

“Very generally, what I would like to see there would be a mixed use project where there is both a commercial and residential aspect. The concept would be higher density residential, meaning apartments. It would be commercial on the first level and apartments above,” he said.

“It’s really, really new. I haven’t gone before the city yet or had any meeting about the proposal. We just submitted it in August,” he said.

Salisbury Mayor Jim Ireton said the lot, bordering the Wicomico River and Route 50, is 1.10 acres. In 2012, it was appraised at $385,000, but Ireton stressed the appraised value “is not the same as the value that we can get for the land.”

“That will be determined by the offers we get. The highest offer is the real value of the land,” he said.

Layfield said the project “would help advance the city’s downtown revitalization efforts.”

“The city has certain goals for downtown, which are to increase walkability and increase the number of inhabitants that live downtown. That site has great connectivity to the downtown area and great visibility and great access through major transportation corridors and with proximity to the river and other businesses. We believe this is also a great opportunity for commercial assets,” Layfield said.

He called the concept  “a really exciting project for the city” and said he’s eager to talk to city officials.

Ireton said the City Council received an update and council members were “in agreement to put it out for bid.”

“Heads and beds are part of our goals for the number of people living downtown by 2020. Selling and developing our surface parking lots is a pivotal part of our downtown revitalization. More people living and more commercial space for shopping is what will bring more people downtown, on a permanent basis,” the mayor said.

There has been concern about the lot laying low, and being prone to flooding, but Layfield said he has talked to engineers “who believe (construction there) is achievable.”

“We are very conscious of the civil engineering challenges. We are very cognizant of it,” Layfield said.

If noise from Route 50 is a consideration, “we can soundproof walls,” he said. “We would be able to mitigate that through various processes.”


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