A local investor tied to a Richmond tobacco giant is betting big on a neighborhood in the throes of a debate over development.
Jackson River Ventures LLC closed July 13 on two buildings at 410-412 and 414 Libbie Ave. just off Grove Avenue for $3.2 million, according to city records.
The entity’s principle office is listed at a Richmond home owned by Craig Johnson, a chief executive at Altria, public records show.
The nearly 1-acre property that includes the two buildings was most recently assessed at $2.24 million.
L. Clarke Jones III of Jones Realty and Construction represented Jackson River Ventures in its purchase of the property. He said Jackson River Ventures is backed by a local investor but declined to discuss the entity further. He said there were no plans to redevelop the two buildings that comprise about 20,000 square feet.
“He was very pleased with the tenant mix and the heritage of the buildings,” Jones said of the buyer. “We don’t plan any real changes.”
Jones said both buildings are fully leased with 10 office and retail tenants that include a doctor’s office, Prosperity Home Mortgage, Virginia Properties, Symmetry Salon, and Apothec. He said Jones Realty and Construction will manage the property, which is set to be rebranded as Libbie Lil.
Jones said 414 Libbie Ave. was previously known as the Ingram Building after the late John Ingram, the man who built it sometime in the 1950s. Ingram died last year, and the Ingram family was the seller for the deal. They were represented by CBRE | Richmond brokers Scott Boyers and Barry Hofheimer.
Boyers said the property had been marketed since March and was listed without an asking price.
“The price reflected the market for that type of property in that location,” Jones said. “It’s a landmark building in a very nice, well-kept part of Richmond.”
The area that surrounds 410 Libbie Ave. has seen recent development activity, some of which has nettled residents.
Westhampton on Grove, a redevelopment of the Westhampton Theater, is headed for city council after getting the green light from the planning commission amid an organized campaign against the 12-unit apartment project. The Chadwick on Grove project is converting a previously two-story building at 5805 Grove Ave. into a three-story building with retail space and condos. And a 15-unit condo development dubbed The Tiber has been put on pause as its backers hope to reorganize in bankruptcy court.