Windsor Square shopping center at 3120 Peach Orchard Road is the home of a post office, Goodwill Job Connection and Dollar General. The center will soon get a new look as vacant storefronts are razed to make way for two new buildings fronting Peach Orchard Road, which will be flanked by Chick-fil-A and Krispy Kreme.
Details of the multiphase project were outlined Tuesday during a news conference held on the site by developers and city leaders.
“For those people that come in from Aiken or Beech Island, this is the gateway into south Richmond County,” Augusta Commission member Joe Jackson said. “We’re going to make it shine.”
The redesigned shopping center will provide increased visibility, new landscaping and better lighting, he said.
The privately funded project is spearheaded by Augusta-based Hull Storey Gibson Co., one of the largest commercial real estate owners in the nation, which has retail space locally and shopping malls across the Southeast.
According to city records, the firm purchased about 9 acres of Windsor Square for $203,200 in 1988 and the remaining portions for about $4 million in 2008. The market value for the entire 14-acre property is listed at about $3.5 million.
“It’s taken that 26 years to get the attention and recognition from the national retailers and these restaurateurs that this area of south Augusta is as prime an area as any other area in Aiken County, Columbia County or any other area in Augusta,” said Jim Hull, the managing principal of Hull Storey Gibson.
The project’s first phase, encompassing demolition and new construction, is expected to begin during the first quarter of 2014, Hull said. The Chick-fil-A restaurant could open in the summer.
An existing SRP Federal Credit Union in the center will move next door to the Lowe’s property. Developers also are trying to bring another “popular national food chain” to the center.
Hull declined to give the projected investment of the project other than to say it’s a “considerable cost.”
Augusta Mayor Deke Copenhaver said he sees the southern portion of the city continuing to grow, citing the forthcoming Starbucks and Rockwood manufacturing facilities opening next year.
“This should be seen as a leading indicator for great things to happen for south Augusta,” he said. “We’re about to see a true Renaissance in this area.”
The Peach Orchard and Windsor Spring corridor has seen other national chains open in the past five years, including IHOP and Roses. A combination Dunkin’ Donuts and Firehouse Subs is under construction nearby at 2930 Peach Orchard Road and is expected to open in February.