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New Pappas Midtown project could get $2.1 million in public money

The Charlotte Regional Realtor Association building off of Greenwood Drive, near Pearl Park, on the edge of uptown. Developer Peter A Pappas is proposing building retail, office and a hotel .
The Charlotte Regional Realtor Association building off of Greenwood Drive, near Pearl Park, on the edge of uptown. Developer Peter A Pappas is proposing building retail, office and a hotel . mhames@charlotteobserver.com

A plan from developer Peter A. Pappas to build an office, retail, and residential project along with a hotel on the site of the Charlotte Regional Realtor Association building in Midtown could entail $2.1 million in public money, according to the city.

Pappas Properties has proposed being reimbursed for improvements to Pearl Street Park and new roads that would support the project, just outside the Interstate 277 loop on Greenwood Cliff Road.

The City Council’s economic development committee will discuss Thursday whether the project warrants taxpayer money. The scope includes “office, hotel, residential, and parking facilities,” a city official said.

In a statement Tuesday, Pappas Properties offered more details on the plan. The first phase will include a new office building for the Realtor Association, the company said. The next phase will be driven by market demand, and is expected to include retail space. The tax grant Pappas is seeking would help cover the cost of extending Pearl Park Way and improvements to the park.

The city and Mecklenburg County often give developers property tax refunds on projects in economically distressed areas or those considered important to helping the city grow.

Another Pappas project in Midtown, the Metropolitan, received public money to replace the decrepit Charlottetowne Mall.

The Metropolitan opened in 2008, with a mix of condos, retail and restaurants along Little Sugar Creek Greenway. Including tax increment grants, infrastructure improvements and the cost of uncapping Little Sugar Creek, Mecklenburg County and the city of Charlotte have about $34 million worth of public money pledged to that project.

At the Realtor Association website, the city said Pappas has proposed $4.7 million worth of infrastructure improvements including: Extending Pearl Park Way and connecting to Greenwood Cliff Road; and removing pavement in Pearl Park and installing new grass along Pearl Park Way.

After those improvements are made, Pappas said he would further extend Pearl Park Way to Baxter Street, build a greenway trail from Kenilworth Avenue to Baxter Street, build a new parking lot for Pearl Park and build a new athletic field for Pearl Park.

City policy allows for a developer to be reimbursed for 45 percent of the money spent on public infrastructure in a project.

The developer would receive the money after it pays property taxes on the finished project.

Council members are expected to see the site plan for the project at Thursday’s committee meeting, as well as seeing possibly how much the total project would cost.

Steve Harrison: 704-358-5160, @Sharrison_Obs

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