It’s taking longer than expected but redevelopment of the former Herald site near downtown is on track.
However, it’s the track that’s causing delay.
Title issues caused by railroad spurs on the property mean Rock Hill Economic Development Corp. can’t yet finalize the contract for the 132 W. Main St. property. RHEDC agreed to acquire the site, with an assignment agreement giving redevelopment rights to Greenville-based Blue Wall Development.
“It’s unfortunate we’re slowing down because of these title issues, but that’s really only slowing down the real estate acquisition process,” Stephen Turner, RHEDC economic and urban development director, told his board earlier this week. “The planning, the commitment of the developer, everything else is still moving forward very strongly on that project.”
Plans announced earlier this summer for the site include senior living space and a walking bridge across Dave Lyle Boulevard. The Knowledge Park addition joins other large redevelopments like Lowenstein Building and new ventures like Rock Hill Sports & Event Center.
The Rock Hill site was the long-time home of The Herald. The daily newspaper moved last fall to 140 Main St., suite 420. Sacramento, Calif.,-based publisher McClatchy owns The Herald and the former site through its pension fund.
The due diligence period on the RHEDC contract was set to expire Sept. 5. RHEDC and the property owner agreed to extend it 90 days to resolve the title issues.
“The planning for redevelopment of that site is going full bore,” Turner said. “We will be submitting what’s called a major site plan for the development of that site, all the development pretty much within that entire block, to the planning commission before the end of the year.”