Lafayette Land Co. recently completed the acquisition of the former Davis Auto Center at 260 St. Louis St., at the corner of North Jackson Street in Mobile. The 12,500-square-foot historic property, which includes an 18-car off-street parking lot, will be restored into a mixed-use commercial and retail center, according to Lafayette Land Co. President Robert J. Isakson.
“The building was custom built in 1937 for Davis Auto, which moved from across the street to accommodate the increasing auto sales and repairs being developed on the newly widened ‘Automobile Alley’ [St. Louis Street],” Isakson said. “The building contains nine massive 10-foot-by-12-foot front and side windows, a row of wooden louvered smaller windows above the large windows, evidence of the original horse and carriage stalls in the rear of the building, brick exterior walls and an exposed wood ceiling with numerous original skylights,” he said
Reportedly this will be the ninth area restoration for Lafayette Land Co. focused in either the Automobile Alley Historic District and/or the DeTonti Square Historic District within the past two years, and brings Lafayette Land’s total to more than 50 historic restorations in the area. Heather Huffman with NAI Mobile is the leasing agent on the project.
Lafayette Land Co. is a family owned and operated full-service real estate development firm headquartered in Mobile. The company specializes in development and construction of long-term build-to-suit net lease facilities for large national retailers and industrial suppliers throughout the United States as well as historic restorations locally.
Current projects under construction or development encompass the Southeast, New York, Delaware, Maryland, Arizona and California.
Commercial real estate moves
• The Waterman-Smith building, also known as the Wells-Fargo tower, has had several new lease transactions signed, per a news release. EMO Trans Shipping, Mobile Rotary Club, attorney Joe H. Little, attorney Brian J. Lockwood and McNair Historic Preservation have collectively rented office space inside the 61 St. Joseph St. location. New lighting and renovations are also currently underway in the 16-story historic property located downtown. Josh W. Hall with NAI Mobile managed the transactions
• C’est La Vie Holdings, a local restaurant operator, purchased the former Rester Brothers at 5054 Old Shell Road. The property was previously sold to a South Florida developer no longer interested in pursuing a project at the site. Jeff LaCour with C’est La Vie Holdings is currently in discussions with the city of Mobile and the Village of Spring Hill about new proposed plans for the property. Emily Miller with Vallas Realty Inc. represented the seller. Buff Teague with JLL is working for the new owners.
• Lewis H. Golden of Hamilton & Co. recently represented the owners of Triangle Business Park in leasing a 6,500-square-foot office/warehouse building to Piping & Equipment Inc. The company will be relocating its local office to the business park. Piping & Equipment is a wholly owned subsidiary of Washington, Pennsylvania-based Fairmont Supply Co., a national multi-line industrial pipe, valve and fitting distributor.
• Adam Metcalfe with Metcalfe & Co. Inc. reported Jackson, Mississippi-based Southern Industrial Services has leased some 7,000 square feet of office/warehouse space at 5705 Rabbit Creek Drive in Mobile.
• Paradise Marine in Gulf Shores has purchased a 9,600-square-foot building at 6940 Highway 59. Plans are in place for the property to be used as the retailer’s Pontoon Superstore sales center. Metcalfe & Co. Inc. handled the transaction.
• Local investors recently purchased a 12,500-square-foot office/warehouse space located at 2200 Perimeter Road — located just outside the Mobile Aeroplex at Brookley — for $389,000. Jay Roberds of NAI Mobile represented the buyers. Mitchum Jackson of Heggeman Realty worked for the sellers.
• Vaporized is leasing the 2,400-square-foot former Cleveland Florist building located at 6434 Airport Blvd. in Mobile. The company plans to open in late spring. Angie McArthur, broker associate with Stirling Properties, represented the landlord in the transaction.
• A Stop N Save gas station, located at 19425 U.S. Highway 43 in Mount Vernon, was recently bought by a local investor for $257,500. Mamun Siddiq with RE/MAX Partners managed both sides of the transaction
Austal USA christens USNS Burlington (EPF 10)
Austal recently christened another Expeditionary Fast Transport (EPF) vessel, the USNS Burlington (EPF 10) with a ceremony at its North American shipbuilding facility in Mobile. Burlington is the tenth of 12 EPFs Austal has under contract with the U.S. Navy with a combined value of over $1.9 billion.
“T-EPFs are operating around the world supporting maritime security operations, disaster relief, logistics support and multiple international and joint exercises,” Rear Admiral Dee L. Mewbourne, Commander, Military Sealift Command, said.
The ship’s sponsor, Marcelle Leahy, headlined the group of officials, community members and Austal employees who attended the ceremony beneath the hull of the ship in Austal’s final assembly bay. Born in Newport, Vermont, Leahy has been married to U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) more than 55 years.
A melanoma survivor, Leahy has served on the board of Tracy’s Kids, an organization dedicated to young cancer patients and their families. She also works with medical organizations throughout the state and serves on the Board of the College of Nursing and Health Sciences of the University of Vermont and as a sustaining director of the Prevent Cancer Foundation.
“There isn’t a more appropriate sponsor for this ship than Marcelle Leahy. Her service to the Vermont National Guard, along with her involvement in other humanitarian causes, makes her the perfect choice for this important role,” Austal USA President Craig Perciavalle said.
Nine Spearhead-class EPFs have been delivered and are serving the Military Sealift Command’s requirements worldwide. USNS City of Bismarck was delivered to the Navy in late 2017 and three more EPFs are under construction at Austal’s Mobile shipyard.
In addition to being in full rate production for the EPF program, Austal is the Navy’s prime contractor for the Independence-variant of the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) program.
Austal has already delivered six LCS vessels, with a seventh on schedule to be delivered in the near future, according to a news release. An additional six EPFs are also in various stages of construction at the shipyard.
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