Grants to help with redevelopment of downtown Temple

Posted at 7:05 PM, Feb 13, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-13 20:11:04-05

Two city grants are expected to help with the redevelopment of two properties in downtown Temple. 

H5B3 LLC, owner and developer, plan to redevelop two historic buildings at 110 and 112 South 1st St., which at one time used to be a restaurant and a furniture store. 

The project would renovate the vacant buildings into a pizza restaurant, a tap room, a deli and coffee house with outdoor dining and entertainment. 

"The huge outdoor and play area will be unique to downtown and quite frankly unique to Temple to have," Temple Director of Planning Brian Chandler said. 

H5B3 received the Strategic Investment Zone grants totaling $230,000 because they met certain criteria and the upcoming projects are in one of the redevelopment areas of Temple. 

"With historic buildings, there are a lot of unknowns," Chandler said. "There is a little more risk. This mitigates the risk to encourage people to invest our downtown and make it a place that is attractive to live, work and play."

Businesses on South 1st Street, such as Gandy's Barbershop, are looking forward to welcoming the new businesses. 

"We'll work with them because we are good neighbors," said Gandy's Barbershop Owner Willard Gandy, who opened his shop in the 1970s.

Philip Okeson who works at the barbershop said it may also help attract new customers. 

"I think it will draw more people here. It will help people notice us," Okeson said. 

Mary Irwin, who manages Texans Grill & BBQ, is also encouraged by new businesses filling empty storefronts.

“It would be better for them to be occupied and it would be more beautiful for downtown Temple to be occupied instead of being vacant," Irwin said.

The grant will be available to the developer for one year. 

The proposed project will be located near the Santa Fe Plaza, which is expected to be finalized next month. A trial connecting Santa Fe Plaza to the Martin Luther King Jr. Festival fields will also be nearby.

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