The old Coburn's building is pictured Thursday, June 13, 2019, in downtown Lafayette, La.

The state highway department and a Lafayette public trust have struck a deal for the lease of the former Coburn's property near downtown.

A cooperative endeavor agreement signed Friday sets at $44,900 the annual rent the Lafayette Public Trust Financing Authority will pay the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development for the block of property and buildings previously occupied by Coburn's Supply and Wholesale Distributors.

The property, bounded by 2nd, 3rd, Cypress and Grant streets, was purchased by the DOTD in 2009 for $3.5 million. The property was needed for construction of on and off ramps for the proposed Interstate 49 Connector. The Connector plans have since been revised and the DOTD no longer needs the property, which includes an historic brick building that was nearly torn down by the DOTD.

Rebekke Miller, LPTFA program coordinator, told The Acadiana Advocate in June the authority ideally would like to buy the former Coburn's property, but such a purchase is complicated because some federal money was used by DOTD to buy the property.

LPTFA representatives are negotiating with a potential tenant, but an agreement has  not been signed.

Several sources have suggested CGI Technologies and Solutions is considering the property to expand its operations in Lafayette. In June, Will LaBar, CGI vice president, said he could not discuss possible sites during negotiations, but acknowledged the company will need additional space.


The old Coburn's building is pictured Monday, February 18, 2019, in downtown Lafayette, La.

The tech company employs more than 400 people in Lafayette and has offices on Cajundome Boulevard and on Jefferson Street in downtown. CGI plans to employ 800 workers in Lafayette.

The LPTFA board in 2018 decided to acquire properties near its campus in or near the 200 block of West 2nd Street. In October, the authority bought vacant land at 108 E. 3rd St. for $25,000 and another at 313 Grant St. for $115,000. In 2019, the LPTFA bought two warehouses behind its office, one at 319 Monroe St., the other at 122 S. Buchanan St., for $645,000.


The old Coburn's building is pictured Thursday, June 13, 2019, in downtown Lafayette, La.

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