Construction of the $20 million redevelopment of the former Entergy site on Government Street should start before the end of the year, one of the project’s developers told the East Baton Rouge Redevelopment Authority.
Dyke Nelson, of Weinstein Nelson Development, said there will be “no problem” with completing the first phase of the Electric Depot development before the end of 2018. The property at 1509 Government will initially include Red Stick Social, a multilevel entertainment facility with a bowling alley, live music, a kitchen and bar and rooftop garden; Noble Wave, a craft microbrewery and pizzeria; a yoga studio; a healthy food vendor and 16 one-bedroom apartments.
Vacant orange-brick buildings pocked with broken windows on the former Entergy site on Gover…
Since the initial tenants for the Electric Depot were announced in May, Nelson said two more tenants have come aboard. One is “an interesting coffee concept” while the other is a photography studio. There is still 10,000 square feet of speculative space in the first phase.
Nelson told the RDA his goal is to get “a destination restaurant” to take over the speculative space.
A new brewpub with a consciously capitalist business model will join the Electric Depot next fall.
In other business, the RDA approved a change in the promissory note it has with the Model Block, which redeveloped a section of Government Street between Ogden and Bedford drives.
Steve Maher of Ritter Maher Architects, one of the tenants of the Model Block, said he wants to borrow more money from IberiaBank to finish out the bottom floor of the Darensbourg building. When the building was redeveloped a few years ago, Ritter Maher took over the top floor of the 9,000-square-foot building but left the bottom unfinished for potential retail tenants.
But retailers never came through and Maher said he wants to finish the property out for office space. Ritter Maher will take over a third of the bottom floor, a photography studio will take over a third and there are leads to turn the rest into a “co-work space” where neighborhood businesses can share offices and conference rooms.
Ritter said the refinancing means he will pay IberiaBank $2,000 more a month. But he’s slated to get $4,500 in rent each month from his tenants.
Because the RDA provided $700,000 in gap financing for the redevelopment, the agency has to approve any changes to the agreement Model Block has with the bank, even though it isn’t providing any more funding.