Transformation of downtown Sacramento will take some time
The Sacramento Kings’ owners say they plan to begin construction on a new apartment building and shops at the devastated corner of Eighth and K streets as soon as next summer.
The Sacramento City Council approved an agreement Tuesday to sell several parcels on the long-vacant corner to the Kings for $5.9 million. The Kings should formally take control of the properties in December after the close of escrow.
The empty space just two blocks from Golden 1 Center is a “strategic site” for the Kings as they seek to transform a large swath of downtown into a vibrant entertainment zone, said team President Chris Granger.
“We have zero incentive to not move as quickly as possible,” Granger said.
The team was granted control of the parcels as part of its financing agreement with the city of Sacramento for Golden 1 Center. Some city officials – including Councilman Steve Hansen – have encouraged the team to move quickly, and it appears the franchise has quietly made steady progress in recent months.
Granger said the Kings have developed conceptual architectural renderings for the project. He also said the team owners are working on gathering financing for the project and developing formal construction documents. The team is hoping for planning commission approval early next year, meaning construction could start by the middle of 2017.
Conceptual plans for the site call for a new mid-rise apartment building filling the empty lot at Eighth and K and extending to L Street, according to a city staff report.
Developer Ali Youssefi has filed an application with the city to rehab the historic Bel-Vue apartment building near Eighth and L streets into 22 “workforce apartments,” meaning they would be affordable to those earning moderate incomes, such as employees of Golden 1 Center. The Bel-Vue – one of the parcels covered by the deal between the Kings and city – would remain in place and be surrounded by the new mid-rise building.
All together, the project could add as many as 180 new apartments to downtown, along with a new row of retail stores facing K Street.
“We’re excited to take another step in the revitalization of downtown,” Granger said.
If approved, the agreement with the Kings would net the city roughly $3 million. City officials have proposed placing that money into a new downtown development fund that could be used as a loan for other major projects in the central city, including the transformation of the former Hotel Marshall on Seventh Street into a boutique Hyatt hotel.