Shuttered Manchester storefronts net new owners

clay bookstore building

Sheba Muluneh and her brother purchased the former Clay Bookstore at 1625 Hull St. (J. Elias O’Neal)

A defunct bookstore and former hardware shop soon will be redeveloped along a stretch of Manchester that continues to attract new investment.

The former Clay Bookstore building at 1625 Hull St. and the former City Hardware building at 1317 Hull St., both largely dormant for at least five years, were recently acquired by separate buyers in separate deals.

Sheba Muluneh and her brother purchased the two-story Clay Bookstore building last week for $295,000, Muluneh confirmed. It was most recently assessed for $197,000, according to city records.

Muluneh, who operates a fermentation lab in Norfolk researching food processes, said the deal is the siblings’ first real estate venture in Richmond.

“We think Manchester is very beautiful,” she said. “We want to do something fun and different for the neighborhood that will add to what’s already there.”

Muluneh plans to overhaul the 3,400-square-foot, century-old building by renovating the ground level to accommodate a possible market, although details are still being worked out.

She said they are exploring applying for historic tax credits and plan to hire a general contractor. The pair hopes to preserve and restore two murals on the side of the building.

Faye Hager, a broker with Virginia Capital Realty, represented the sellers, Peyton and Daniel Deckelman. Susan Haas, a broker with Joyner Commercial, represented the Mulunehs.

A few blocks up, seasoned local developer Jeremy Connell, who’s behind one of Manchester’s newest townhome projects, bought the old City Hardware building in late December for $250,000, according to city records. The building was most recently assessed for $108,000.

city hardware building

Jeremy Connell plans to redevelop the former City Hardware building at 1317 Hull St. (J. Elias O’Neal)

Connell, whose development firm Pareto LLC is overseeing the construction of the 7West townhouse complex along West Seventh Street, said he plans to convert the two-story, 8,000-square-foot hardware building to include ground-level retail and up to eight apartment units above.

No construction timeline for the project has been set, Connell said.

The two deals continue adding to Old Town Manchester’s rebirth.

Michael Hild and Laura Dyer Hild, through their Church Hill Ventures LLC, have several ventures in the works in buildings they’re redeveloping along Hull Street, including Manastoh Brewing in the old Bank of Commerce & Trust building at 1128 Hull St., Dogtown Brewing Co. at 1209 Hull St., Hot Diggity Donuts at 1204 Hull St., and Butterbean Market and Café at 1213 Hull St.

RJ Smith Cos.’ buildings at 1319 and 1321 Hull St. were recently renovated with two new commercial spaces for future users. The development firm also is wrapping up construction on its four-story, 9,000-square-foot structure at 1312 Bainbridge St. Dubbed The Bridge, the project includes 14 apartments and parking.

And the owner of an East End barbecue joint is opening a new restaurant, Pig And Brew, at 1313 Hull St. in a building redeveloped by investor Charlie Westbrook.

clay bookstore building

Sheba Muluneh and her brother purchased the former Clay Bookstore at 1625 Hull St. (J. Elias O’Neal)

A defunct bookstore and former hardware shop soon will be redeveloped along a stretch of Manchester that continues to attract new investment.

The former Clay Bookstore building at 1625 Hull St. and the former City Hardware building at 1317 Hull St., both largely dormant for at least five years, were recently acquired by separate buyers in separate deals.

Sheba Muluneh and her brother purchased the two-story Clay Bookstore building last week for $295,000, Muluneh confirmed. It was most recently assessed for $197,000, according to city records.

Muluneh, who operates a fermentation lab in Norfolk researching food processes, said the deal is the siblings’ first real estate venture in Richmond.

“We think Manchester is very beautiful,” she said. “We want to do something fun and different for the neighborhood that will add to what’s already there.”

Muluneh plans to overhaul the 3,400-square-foot, century-old building by renovating the ground level to accommodate a possible market, although details are still being worked out.

She said they are exploring applying for historic tax credits and plan to hire a general contractor. The pair hopes to preserve and restore two murals on the side of the building.

Faye Hager, a broker with Virginia Capital Realty, represented the sellers, Peyton and Daniel Deckelman. Susan Haas, a broker with Joyner Commercial, represented the Mulunehs.

A few blocks up, seasoned local developer Jeremy Connell, who’s behind one of Manchester’s newest townhome projects, bought the old City Hardware building in late December for $250,000, according to city records. The building was most recently assessed for $108,000.

city hardware building

Jeremy Connell plans to redevelop the former City Hardware building at 1317 Hull St. (J. Elias O’Neal)

Connell, whose development firm Pareto LLC is overseeing the construction of the 7West townhouse complex along West Seventh Street, said he plans to convert the two-story, 8,000-square-foot hardware building to include ground-level retail and up to eight apartment units above.

No construction timeline for the project has been set, Connell said.

The two deals continue adding to Old Town Manchester’s rebirth.

Michael Hild and Laura Dyer Hild, through their Church Hill Ventures LLC, have several ventures in the works in buildings they’re redeveloping along Hull Street, including Manastoh Brewing in the old Bank of Commerce & Trust building at 1128 Hull St., Dogtown Brewing Co. at 1209 Hull St., Hot Diggity Donuts at 1204 Hull St., and Butterbean Market and Café at 1213 Hull St.

RJ Smith Cos.’ buildings at 1319 and 1321 Hull St. were recently renovated with two new commercial spaces for future users. The development firm also is wrapping up construction on its four-story, 9,000-square-foot structure at 1312 Bainbridge St. Dubbed The Bridge, the project includes 14 apartments and parking.

And the owner of an East End barbecue joint is opening a new restaurant, Pig And Brew, at 1313 Hull St. in a building redeveloped by investor Charlie Westbrook.

Your subscription has expired. Renew now by choosing a subscription below!

For more informaiton, head over to your profile.

Profile


SUBSCRIBE NOW

TERMS OF SERVICE:

ALL MEMBERSHIPS RENEW AUTOMATICALLY. YOU WILL BE CHARGED FOR A 1 YEAR MEMBERSHIP RENEWAL AT THE RATE IN EFFECT AT THAT TIME UNLESS YOU CANCEL YOUR MEMBERSHIP BY LOGGING IN OR BY CONTACTING [email protected]

ALL CHARGES FOR MONTHLY OR ANNUAL MEMBERSHIPS ARE NONREFUNDABLE.

EACH MEMBERSHIP WILL ONLY FUNCTION ON UP TO 3 MACHINES. ACCOUNTS ABUSING THAT LIMIT WILL BE DISCONTINUED.

FOR ASSISTANCE WITH YOUR MEMEBERSHIP PLEASE EMAIL [email protected]




Return to Homepage

Subscribe
Notify of
guest
2 Comments
oldest
newest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Deon Hamner
Deon Hamner
4 years ago

Manchester property selling like hot cakes. In a few years it will be interesting to see all the changes come to fruition.

Bruce Milam
Bruce Milam
4 years ago

Jeremy is buying a great building,and importantly, his work will fill in the gap of re-purposed and restored buildings along that block. City Hardware is the only one left to be redone. Congrats to both Jeremy and Steve Dee for doing this.