New apartment space underway or planned downtown:
• Chestnut Street, 160 units
• Walnut Commons, 100 units
• 615 Lindsay St., 50 UTC students
• North Market and Bell Avenue, 42 units
• 863 McCallie Ave., 40 UTC students
• Nautilus Building, 12 units
More apartments are headed for Chattanooga's North Shore after a development group bought a high-profile building at one of the key gateways to downtown.
A pair of local investors paid $1.1 million for the three-story structure at Market Street and Frazier Avenue known as the Nautilus Building, said Marcus Lyons, who brokered the deal and is a principal in the project.
He said plans are to put a dozen apartments in the top two floors, which are essentially vacant now.
Lyons said his group expects to spend about $500,000 revamping the brick building that already houses The Nu Cheveux Salon and other businesses on the ground floor.
"First and foremost, it's getting the exterior up to speed with the rest of the North Shore," said the multi-family real estate broker, whose group bought the early 1940s structure from CHC Warehouse LLC.
Kim White, who heads the downtown nonprofit redevelopment group River City Co., said there remains a big demand for central city apartments.
"We still need more," she said.
White added that she wished more owners of multiple-story buildings along Market would refurbish their above-ground-level space into apartments.
"It would add so much to the vibrancy of the community," she said.
Lyons said the 25,000-square-foot Nautilus Building received its name because there used to be a gym there that used all three floors.
"It used to have an indoor track," he said.
Lyons said his group is planning class A apartment space, but he didn't state what rents may be. Plans are to start renovations at the beginning of 2013, he said.
Lyons said he likes the location of the building on Frazier and noted that a new Publix grocery store is slated to go just a couple of blocks north on North Market.
"It's almost like a landmark," he said of the structure.