This year's trend: dense office and residential space

Those in the market for a residential or office condo, or a townhouse in Carson City will have more options this year.

A nationwide residential developer plans to construct 48 town houses in Carson City on South Roop Street.

A Carson City company plans to convert its high-end apartments to condos. One of the partners said the process will begin after the city finalizes its condo-conversion ordinance.

A South Curry Street office condo complex is nearly 50 percent sold - and it hasn't even broken ground yet.

West Knoll will give businesses the opportunity to purchase their own space, said developer Tom Metcalf, chief executive officer of Metcalf Builders. The $5 million professional office complex includes two, three-story buildings with 40,000 square feet total, located behind the Shell gas station.

Business owners will spend $200 a square foot to purchase office space at West Knoll. Originally, Metcalf planned to construct residential condos and office space. The high cost of construction defect liability insurance for 14 units, $400,000, caused him to switch plans. West Knoll construction will begin within a few months. It will open in spring 2007.

Sam Terry, a partner in a Carson City company that plans to convert its high-end apartments to condos, said after the condo conversion ordinance is approved his company will submit its tentative map and special-use permit. City supervisors could approve the ordinance by late April.

"Once the tentative map is approved (by the planning commission) then we can take down-payments (on condos)," he said.

His tenants will be informed by a public notice 15 days prior to when the planning commission will meet to approve the map. Tenants will have the option to buy their homes or vacate.

Centex Homes, headquartered in Dallas, purchased 3.78 vacant acres south of the post office on Roop Street for $2.6 million, to build town homes. The company bought the property on Feb. 3 from Dayton-based Toscana Village LLC.

Dennis Wigent, operational marketing manager for Centex Homes in Northern Nevada, said plans for Governor's Square are still progressing. The project will break ground in October and homes will go on the market in late summer. Pricing is not yet available.

So far about 20 people have already inquired about the 48 town homes. The majority are Carson City residents looking for a smaller home.

The high cost of land makes affordable home ownership difficult. Wigent said these homes will be more affordable, making them attractive for first-time buyers and empty nesters with too much space.

"I've been getting calls from people on both ends," he said. "First-time buyers call. Yesterday, I got a call from a man who has a four-bedroom house and he thinks it's time to move down. Those are the kinds of calls we've been receiving."

It is the builder's first project in Carson City. The company's Reno office has been building homes for 23 years.

Wigent declined to give the construction cost of the town homes. The publicly traded company only releases data on a national level. The prices of the homes will be released closer to the start-of-sale date.

Eric Crisp, president of SC Development Inc. and co-owner of Toscana Village LLC, said his company will develop about 9,000-square-feet of commercial on Roop Street adjacent to Governor's Square. His company had planned to develop the town homes before Centex stepped forward.

• Contact reporter Becky Bosshart at or 881-1212.


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