For weeks after Blake Barnes learned his Common Market would be forced out of its South End location to make way for a new development, he was dead set against finding a new home for it.
“I said I’d rather stick a fork in my eye,” he said, worrying that he’d only be kicked out again. “What they’re doing to that area scares me.”
But Common Market will indeed relocate, and Barnes told the Agenda that he’s narrowed the list down to two locations. Both are in the South End area. The final decision is still a few weeks out. In the meantime, contractors will evaluate the investment needed to bring them up to snuff.
(1) Carolina Foundry building on Tremont Avenue
This location is about a half-mile south of the current spot. New Carolina Properties is under contract to buy this property but it’s being marketed by Ligon CRE as an adaptive re-use development.
(2) Boulevard Films building on South Boulevard
This is even closer to the former site and is by the Nan and Byron’s.
Numerous South End developers contacted Barnes to see if he’d want to be a part of their new buildings. But the locations Barnes is interested are both historic, an important consideration.
As far as when the current Common Market will close, Barnes said his understanding is that he has until June 2016. Cousins Properties has indicated they’ll be flexible. His goal is to have the new location up and running around then, to make the transition almost seamless.
“I’m feeling really good about where things are going,” he said.