The Highlands Residential Services is exploring selling Cookeville’s Claude Darwin apartments property.
The Board of Commissioners discussed Thursday the 32 duplexes located between Boatman and Darwin Streets. Executive Director Dow Harris said if sold, residents would likely be transferred to the almost completed Hickory Valley units.
“If we were to choose to dispose of Claude Darwin, there was some interest in looking in this and in studying this and to generate equity for future developments, as well,” Harris said. “Also, the tax credit deals that we are involved with require us to transfer assistance.”
Nashville Real Estate Professional Waddell Wright studied the value of the land. Wright said he found the 11 and a half acres to be worth about $1.6 million, but that is subject to change. With Putnam County also selling the Fairgrounds property, Wright said any added commercial development could hike that value.
“What is ultimately going to up the value is going to be density,” Wright said. “Right now, 188 units is what we got here. Now, density will up the value. Maybe if enough retail comes in or multi-family and rents go up in that area. We know rent is higher at the development across the street from the fairgrounds. That is a pretty nice, luxury complex, but I think that is something that we could see. (…) But, I don’t know waiting for that would be the best thing.”
Harris said this makes for interesting timing on when to place the property on the market. Wright said he recommends placing the property on the market with out a listing to gauge interest in the coming months.
Wright said the land is large enough to hold 188 multi-family units or 95 single units for interested developers. Harris said the standing apartments that were built in the 60’s would likely be demolished.