New Ways for Old Buildings

New Ways for Old Buildings

No matter how large or old a city is, or where it’s located, it needs people to thrive. Over time, a city may start to show signs of aging , but urban renewal, redevelopment and revitalization projects are critical to its survival because they stimulate the economy, enhance property values, instill a sense of civic pride and help existing businesses while attracting new ones.

“It’s all about taking an aging asset and connecting it with people again,” said Meredith Mears, chief development officer. “That’s what we’re doing across the Peninsula.”

Mears says location is often the biggest advantage to adaptive reuse. Attractive buildings are typically located in the center of cities where they were, at one time, a highly visited location. While structure can deteriorate over time, the character of the building is typically distinctive to the period it was constructed – something unique that modern building design can’t touch.

The most recent example is the redevelopment of The Powell Building at 218 West Main Street in downtown Salisbury. The 45,000 square foot, five story, historic structure is currently being redeveloped into 20 apartments and commercial and retail space. Out of the 10,000 square feet on the ground floor, 8,000 is already leased to Main Street Kids, a brand-new business in downtown Salisbury.

Earlier in 2019, Gillis Gilkerson joined The Insurance Market and state and local dignitaries to cut the ribbon on their newly redeveloped office space in downtown Milford, Delaware. The project was the recipient of a Downtown Development District rebate through the state of Delaware.

The 13,200 square foot space was originally occupied by Fishers’ Appliances and most recently used for retail and office uses. In need of a facelift, the Front Street property was converted to a class A office building that is now anchored by The Insurance Market with 5,500 square feet left available for lease.

“The redevelopment of this building has been deemed a catalyst for other redevelopment activity and contributes to superior urban design standards,” said Delaware State Housing Authority Director Anas Ben Addi. “It is a great example of how the Downtown Development Districts program can benefit businesses, investors and others throughout the state. I congratulate Gillis Gilkerson on their work to help revitalize Milford’s downtown.”

From downtown redevelopment ventures to non-profit health centers, the Gillis Gilkerson team is an integral part of many different community projects. GGI’s most recent Mid-Shore project was the completion of the new Choptank Community Health Center in Denton, Maryland. The new building houses primary family medical care, pediatric medical and dentistry and behavioral health services.

“This project was important to the client and the community with its intentions to improve health outcomes,” said Dwight Miller, president, Gillis Gilkerson. “We were fortunate to have the opportunity to build this all-encompassing healthcare facility for mid-shore residents and their families.”