by William Needham Finley IV™

Development Beat: Wahlburgers Evicted, Top Real Estate Sales of 2018

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Brought to you by York Properties


Wahlburgers evicted

Brookside Market & Pizza closed

Farewell to bu•ku’s downtown Raleigh location

Sir Walter Apartments set for massive renovation

Olive Garden on Capital preps for renovation

Top Real Estate Sales of 2018

To be featured in the Development Beat, contact business@itbinsider.com.




Wahlburgers Evicted From Downtown Raleigh

Wahlburgers has been evicted after being open for roughly seven months in downtown Raleigh.

The restaurant held a grand opening in May of 2018. Around December 27th or 28th, the Wake County Sheriff’s Department conducted the grand closing ceremony for Wahlburgers.

In a groundbreaking investigation, ABC11 spoke with some employees of Wahlburgers who described poor working conditions, including paychecks that bounced, no heat and air conditioning, and a lack of staff training. Some employees apparently found out about the closing from reading an article on ABC11.

ABC11 also reported the following:

“The November inspection report from the Wake County Health Department confirmed the workers claims that the facility had no working hot water.”

“Some workers even said the store started buying food from Sam’s Club.”

Apparently, Wahlburgers is “truly saddened” to hear about the news and is conducting an internal review of independent franchise owner Greg Pranzo, who operated the Raleigh location under the name Carolina Burger Company.

The long history of Wahlburgers begins in September of 2016. It was announced that the burger chain owned by brothers Mark, Donnie, and Paul Wahlberg, would be opening its first Raleigh location on Fayetteville Street in the former home of The Oxford.

The announcement was met with some backlash. In a video posted to Facebook, local bar owner Zack Medford challenged Mark Wahlberg to a “burger contest” that would be held at The Sir Walter Smoke-Off at Dix Park. Wahlberg did not show up.

By September of 2017, a company spokesperson told the News & Observer that the burger chain would open that fall. We wondered why the restaurant still had not opened by March of 2018.

Mark Wahlberg once said, “Making you feel the rhythm is my occupation, so feel the vibration.” It seems the owner of the Raleigh Wahlburgers franchise took that to heart, and spent entirely too much time on rhythm and far too little time on running a restaurant.

Triangle Food Guy summed it up best in the following Tweet:


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Brookside Market & Pizza Closed

Brookside Market & Pizza has closed after opening in January of 2018.

The rumor mill on Nextdoor claims that the Mediterranean restaurant that once inhabited the space may be coming back in January 2019 for beer and wine and will be opening the grill on February 1st.


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Farewell to bu•ku’s Downtown Raleigh Location

RIP to bu•ku, one of the best brunch spots and overall restaurants in downtown Raleigh.

The popular global street food restaurant that operated out of the Red Hat Tower since 2010 has closed. In early 2018, Red Hat announced plans to expand into the space on the ground floor, which meant that bu•ku would have to find a new home by the end of the year.

Fans of bu•ku need not worry, as the restaurant plans to open in the former home of AN in Cary in early 2019. They also opened another location in Wake Forest in 2018.

We checked in with Sean Degnan, co-owner of bu•ku and the successful so•ca in Cameron Village, about the news. Degnan mentioned some super secret plans for another restaurant that we can’t reveal here, and looked back on the time in the Red Hat building fondly. “What coexisted was a good thing. The Red Hat people came down for lunch and happy hour every day and we took great care of them, and everyone else.”

When asked about bu•ku’s food coma inducing weekend brunch, Degnan replied, “Who knew? I don’t think I’m getting out of the brunch buffet business any time soon. I guess I’m just going to buy some more brunch equipment.”

We’re hoping that Degnan, who also serves on the Board of Directors for A Place At The Table, opens a brunch buffet food truck ASAP.


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Sir Walter Apartments Renovation Begins

The Sir Walter Apartments in downtown Raleigh are set for an upgrade.

Permits valued at more than $9 million were issued to Weaver Cooke Construction for a project that will add 21 new units on the 10th floor, renovate the existing 140 units, and make a number of upgrades throughout the historic building on Fayetteville Street.

The TBJ reported that the Capital Realty Group, based in New York, bought the 10-story building for $16.8 million and are planning $15 million in renovations. In 2018, the City Council approved $3 million worth of funding that will allow the building to continue to serve as affordable housing for seniors.

We previously reported on the closing of the Chick-fil-A that operated on the bottom floor of the building. We have yet to investigate what will replace it.

Originally built as a hotel in the early 1920s, the Sir Walter changed hands – and brands – a number of times over the decades before being sold in the late 1970s and converted to a senior housing complex.


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That’s A Spicy Renovation

The Olive Garden on Capital Boulevard is about to get a whole lot classier.

Already considered Raleigh’s finest Italian dining establishment, the Olive Garden will soon undergo more than half a million dollars worth of interior and exterior renovations. Rumor has it that CBH General Contracting agreed to be paid entirely in breadsticks.

While we’re not exactly sure how CBH plans to improve on the perfection that is the Capital Boulevard Olive Garden, the permits indicate that this renovation will encompass the entirety of the building: 6,460 square feet worth of interior renovations and 2,737 square feet of exterior renovations.



Top Real Estate Sales of 2018

2018 has certainly seen more than its share of high dollar sales. Here are the top 10 sales of the last year.

10. Colonial Grand at Brier Falls Apartments

On March 23, 2018, the Colonial Grand Apartments on Crichton Street in Brier Creek were sold to Mid-America Apartment Communities for $45 million. The previous owner was based in Kernersville, NC.

9. Ridgewood Shopping Center

In September, we reported that Regency Centers, a real estate investment trust based in Jacksonville, Florida, purchased the Ridgewood Shopping Center. The 95,000+ square foot property was sold for $46 million.

8. The Mark Apartments

Located off Lynn Road, the Mark Apartments were sold in June 2018 to American Landmark Apartments based out of Tampa, Florida for $46.6 million. The previous owners were Charleston Property Management out of South Carolina.

7. 616 at the Village

On December 14, 2018, the 616 at the Village apartments on Oberlin Road near Cameron Village were sold to Heitman Capital Management out of Chicago for $48.5 million. The previous owners were based out of Atlanta, GA.

6. Elan City Center Apartments

In September 2018, the Elan City Center Apartments at 510 N. Wilmington were sold to Principal Real Estate Investors based out Des Moines, IA for $50.7 million. The previous owners were Charleston Property Management out of South Carolina.

5. The Village Apartments

The Village Apartments on Autumn Winds Drive in North Raleigh were sold in November to the Continental Realty Corporation out of Baltimore, MD for $51.6 million. The previous owners were Charleston Property Management out of South Carolina.

4. The Tribute Apartments

In July 2018, the Tribute Apartments on Tribute Drive off Glenwood were sold to Waterton Associates out of Chicago for $60.2 million. The previous owners were based out of Los Angeles, CA.

3. The Dakota

In September, The Dakota apartments on Wildgrass Drive near Carter-Finley Stadium were sold from one Boston-based company to another for $63 million. The new owner is the Eaton Vance Real Estate Group.

2. Midtown Plaza

In February, Kane Realty sold off Midtown Plaza at 305 Church at North Hills Street for $127 million to KBS Realty Advisors out of Houston, Texas.

1. Wells Fargo Center

The largest real estate sale of the year was the Wells Fargo Capitol Center, which went for $173 million back in August to Preferred Office Properties out of Atlanta, GA. Its previous owners were based out of New York City.


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