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Will the vacant lot at the northeast corner of College and Oleander ever be developed?

Ken Little

Motorists and passers-by should notice changes on the property by early next year, says Spruill Thompson, senior director of brokerage for Cape Fear Commercial, LLC.

“We do have plans for development there and we are re-negotiating a contract as we speak,” Thompson said on Oct. 20, 2009.

The .72-acre tract was owned by Georgia-based Fairway Outdoor Advertising, a subsidiary of Morris Communications Co., LLC, which was acquired on Oct. 15 by ACON Investments.  Fairway is one of the largest privately owned outdoor advertising companies in the U.S. Its billboards have been a common sight for years at the intersection of Oleander and College roads, one of the busiest in Wilmington.

Thompson declined to discuss details about the prospective buyer and what will be built on the land, but says something should be in place by next year.

“It’s almost geographically in the center of the county and it’s certainly a vital intersection,” he says. “The folks who are interested in the property have been very patient.”

The property is listed at $835,000. For the sale to go through, the N.C. Department of Transportation must grant driveway permits. The DOT has also proposed a right-hand turn lane from Oleander onto College Road, which entails encroaching onto the corner lot to create another turn lane.

“It is possible and that will have to be orchestrated and engineered to ensure it complies with city ordinances,” Thompson says. “It’s just taken a lot of time.”

A single-use restriction placed on the land years ago has been modified by City Council to allow commercial development, Thompson says.

Engineering work and environmental site studies can begin within the next few weeks, he says. The public will notice changes within three to four months if negotiations result in a sale, Thompson adds.

User-contributed question by:
Lisa Wright

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3 Responses to “ Will the vacant lot at the northeast corner of College and Oleander ever be developed?”

  1. On October 23, 2009 at 10:51 am Forrest Brown wrote:

    The property was developed and used for many years.

    It was the site of Winter Park Barber Shop, Joe Garners used car lot for two.

    It has long been considered a dead site for successful development because of the extreme difficulty getting in and out of the property.

  2. On October 26, 2009 at 3:37 pm Jim wrote:

    I was told that the two billboards generated so much money there probably would never be anything there again. I guess since there is a CVS AND A WALGREENS already on two corners, We can soon look forward to another pharmacy.

  3. On October 28, 2009 at 10:56 pm Laura Currie wrote:

    This corner was also the site of my grandfathers Union 76 gas station for many years in the 1970’s.

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