Thalhimer plans 7-story apartment building on Sampson Coatings site in Manchester

A new, brick-façade building would replace a vacant warehouse at 301 Hull St. (Courtesy of city documents)

Hundreds more apartments are in the queue for Manchester as a prolific local developer tees up its latest project.

Thalhimer Realty Partners is planning to build a 250-unit apartment building at 301 Hull St., according documents filed with the city last week.

The new 7-story building would replace a vacant warehouse on the property that was formerly a factory for paint company Sampson Coatings. TRP bought the 1.5-acre parcel late last year for $4.4 million.

In addition to the apartments, plans for the building call for a two-story, 275-space parking deck and about 3,500 square feet of commercial space.

While the plans have been filed, TRP principal Drew Wiltshire said the firm is not necessarily in a rush to get ground moving on the project.

A rendering of the planned 7-story building as seen from Hull Street.

“We understand what we want to build there given the site’s attributes and how we want to orient the building to take advantage of the views of the river and skyline,” Wiltshire said. “The real variables are going to be what happens to construction and pricing, and also the interest rate climate and the debt markets.”

He said fluctuating construction costs and interest rates didn’t slow down the planning process and that the firm is looking to get the plan of development approved as quickly as possible so that once it’s ready to break ground, it’ll be good to go.

An existing 76,000-square-foot warehouse on the site would be razed, though a brick smokestack at the back of the property would be retained and incorporated into the new building.

Plans show that 210 of the 250 apartments would be one-bedroom units, with the remaining 40 units being two-bedrooms. Planned amenities include a gym, pool and courtyard.

510 Architects is the project’s architect and Timmons Group is its engineer.

Sampson Coatings’ former factory is slated to be razed to make way for apartments. (BizSense file photo)

TRP can develop the project by-right, as last year it successfully rezoned the property to TOD-1 Transit-Oriented Nodal district, which allows for a mix of uses and up to 12 stories in height.

TRP is also planning an 8-story, 271-unit apartment building next door on a parking lot at 423 Hull St. Wiltshire said that plan of development has been approved, but construction costs and interest rates have also put that project in a holding pattern. He added that with all the construction happening along Hull Street, it’s been useful to keep that site as a parking lot in the near-term.

“It’s just congested over there. We see that site as a parking field, certainly not as a long-term solution for us, but in the interim when all the growth is going on now,” Wiltshire said. “It’s very useful that way while we wait for the overall macro (construction) factors to change.”

There are currently about 1,300 apartments either planned or under construction along Hull Street between Commerce Road and the Mayo Bridge.

Work is underway on Capital City Real Estate’s 173-unit building at the intersection of Hull and West Seventh streets as well as the 65-unit second phase of PortRVA at 500 Hull St. Upcoming projects include WVS Cos. and Fountainhead Real Estate Development’s redevelopment of the Plant Zero building and Hourigan Development’s 20-story tower that’ll replace the Southern States silos.

Meanwhile TRP has big projects brewing elsewhere in the city, as it’s on the team that was selected to lead the development of the 67-acre Diamond District.

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Bruce Milam
Bruce Milam
6 days ago

This is great news. Its been a redevelopment issue for awhile now. What becomes of the produce building next door to Sampson paints? Does Thalhimer buy and scrape that site as well?

Brett Themore
Brett Themore
6 days ago

Glad to see the smoke stack remains, It’s a nice visual anchoring the development (and revenue from the cell phone relays). I do hope the project contains a full story of ground floor retail, with sufficient depth facing Hull, not sure 3500 sf encompasses the full frontage of Hull, but I could be mistaken.

Last edited 6 days ago by Brett Themore
Flora Valdes-Dapena
Flora Valdes-Dapena
5 days ago

That brick facade is a really nice look. Retains the post-industrial warehouse vibe while still keeping it fresh and new. Way better than the cheap plastic cladding on most of these new buildings. That parking garage however… yikes. We really need to get a parking maximum added to the TOD-1 district. This new density is good, but if we allow that much car storage, it guarantees worse traffic congestion. Build less parking and you’ll get less cars, simple as. We also need to start getting some committed affordable units in these new projects. New units are always good but they… Read more »

Bruce Milam
Bruce Milam
5 days ago

It’s more difficult than ever for developers to finance “affordable” units without the City providing some sort of real estate tax rebate keyed to resident income levels. There are no tax abatements now; this would be a performance proven rebate in its stead. The proposal has been in front of the Council for years. It would provide opportunities to distribute affordable units throughout the city (counties too if they’ll do it) rather than building pockets of “poverty” in select areas like public housing projects. The new LIHTC buildings are bursting at the seams and cannot service the number of applicants… Read more »

Bruce Milam
Bruce Milam
5 days ago

Your point about traffic on Hull Street is well taken.it cannot be widened so it will be what it is. Something has to be done about calming the speeding vehicles on that street from the bridge to Commerce. Someone is going to be killed. I’ve seen vehicles doing fifty mph as they pass The Continental, frustrated by the backup on Mayo Bridge and racing for the Commerce stoplight. At the very least, I’d like to see truck traffic diverted to the Manchester and I-95 bridges altogether. Better still, close the bridge to vehicular traffic other than mass transit and make… Read more »

Roger Turner
Roger Turner
5 days ago

As Bruce states below “with labor, materials, and land being at an all time high” it’s hard for any developer to design “affordable” units in new construction unless of course the units are subsidized by government assistance programs for low income. Also peoples expectations (granite countertops, large closets, balconies, common areas, workout rooms, etc. etc) have changed dramatically, the apartments I rented in the west end 30 years ago were probably designed way below what would be called “low income” designs of today.

Michael P Morgan-Dodson
Michael P Morgan-Dodson
5 days ago

Interesting 1300 planned or under construction?? Does that include their over 500 that are on hold under Thalhimer as mentioned in the article?? If so how many more are now on hold and are we talking less than 500 new units in Manchester in the next 12-18 months coming online. Has construction slowed THAT much???

Bruce Milam
Bruce Milam
5 days ago

I would say that 1300 is the number in the immediate pipeline. There are some deals being stalled by the volatile debt markets. Rents are strong and demand is high, but labor, materials and land are at all time highs as well in a time period in which interest rates have climbed to recent records.

karl hott
karl hott
5 days ago

Bricks; parking garage; authentic elements (i.e. smokestack)…as a resident of Manchester I thank you for being a good neighbor.

Julian Utley
Julian Utley
5 days ago

Nice to finally see some brick used without a flat facade on an apartment building!

Connor Matthew
Connor Matthew
5 days ago

Odd question – Is that the building with the Dave Brockie mural?

And I agree with the others – looks like a great and unique design.