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Luxury complex planned downtown

The three-bedroom, three-bath town homes will be built in the style of historic structures in Charleston, S.C.

By SHARON L. BOND

© St. Petersburg Times, published March 4, 2001


ST. PETERSBURG -- Another luxury-home complex will be built downtown in several lots across from the Heritage Holiday Inn.

The 16-unit complex at 235 Third Ave. N, to be called Charleston Place, will feature what the developer is calling city homes instead of town homes because of the amenities included and size of the homes. They will be built in the style of historic structures in Charleston, S.C., and have three bedrooms, three baths, and two-car garages. The end units will include space for home offices on the ground floor.

Prices start at $350,000.

"We're creating more of a city feel," said Robert McGrath, managing partner of Charleston LLC, the development company.

Amenities include two-story entry foyers, hardwood floors in the great rooms, 16-by-22-feet master bedrooms, pantries in a number of the units and full-size laundry rooms. Buyers can choose to have interior elevators.

The homes range in size from 2,650 square feet to 3,100 square feet, excluding balconies and terraces. Approximately six of the units will have four parking spaces, two in the garages that are entered from the rear and then covered spaces outside, McGrath said.

The two floors of living space will sit atop a ground floor that includes the garages. The end units will have 500 to 600 square feet of space in the front of the garages that could be used for offices and make the complex a multi-use project, McGrath said.

Eight of the units will face Third Avenue N, sitting approximately in the middle of the block between Second and Third streets. In the middle of the property will be a courtyard with a swimming pool and then the second building with eight units, McGrath said. Six of the units that front the courtyard will have Charleston-style front porches with railings, McGrath said.

A house in the building site that probably will be sold and moved is one of six empty structures on the land. The house is the western most structure on the lot, has columns and a wrap porch. The other buildings probably will be torn down, McGrath said.

The northern end of BayWalk, the new downtown entertainment/retail complex, is catty corner from Charleston Place.

"We're not more than 200 feet from BayWalk," McGrath said.

A sales center will open March 12 in the Heritage Holiday Inn. McGrath said construction should start in late June after the demolition and take seven to eight months to complete.

One of McGrath's most recent projects was the Marquesa on Treasure Island, 17 condominiums priced between $600,000 to $975,000 each.

Charleston Place is in the lower price range of luxury condominiums downtown. Three high-rise projects with bay views either have been completed or are nearly finished. Prices on them ranged from $300,000 up into the millions.

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