Progress continues on old Feldman’s rebuild

Construction on River View Commons, the old Feldman’s Furniture building, is continuring as developers Gillis Gilkerson progress toward meeting a fourth-quarter 2015 occupancy deadline.

“This is an opportunity for Gillis Gilkerson to take a historic landmark that has deteriorated over time and transform it to fit into the present day revitalized core of downtown Salisbury,” said Dwight Miller, president, Gillis Gilkerson.

“This undertaking is more than the renovation of an old run down building.  It will breathe new life into a community that is on the cusp of regeneration,” he said.

Gillis Gilkerson broke ground in September 2014 to replace the roof and reinforce the walls of the 15,000 square foot original structure.  The initial phase of construction will include the renovation of the existing facility and the addition of stair towers, an elevator and a common space, allowing for a total of 20,000 square feet.

Renovations will convert the 19th century landmark into a multi-use building with available space for a restaurant, gallery, shops and offices.  Plans also include an outside deck and public river walk along the Wicomico River and Mill Street.

“It is a bedrock structure with high visibility in the heart of downtown Salisbury,” said Palmer Gillis, CEO, Gillis Gilkerson.  “The exciting part is having the opportunity to take a historic building and transform it into a structure with modern-day purpose and functionality.”

History in the making:

In 1888, the building was situated on 20,000 square feet of land, and was originally built as a two-story warehouse.

The space was once a trading spot for wholesale grocer B.L. Gillis, Palmer Gillis’ uncle from five generations past.

The building was expanded to three stories and in the 1920’s the red brick façade was changed to a Tudor Revival style.

Allison A. Gillis bought the property in May 1890 and owned it until he died in 1913. His two daughters inherited it and retained the title to the property until 1923.

In 1923, the property was transferred to Samuel and William Feldman and was developed into Feldman’s Brothers furniture business.  By the mid-1930s, it was well-known as one of the largest furniture stores in the region.


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