Developers Planning Transformation in Downtown Waynesboro

Posted: Updated:
Main Street in Downtown Waynesboro Main Street in Downtown Waynesboro
The Leggett Building has sat empty for over a decade The Leggett Building has sat empty for over a decade

A team of developers is looking to transform an abandoned West Main Street department store in downtown Waynesboro.

Bottom Alley Development is making plans to redevelop the former Leggett Building into a shared space for entrepreneurs called River City Collective.

Leggett Department Store closed its doors in this location in 1993. Because of that, the largest building on Main Street in downtown has sat vacant for more than a decade.

“Revitalization of downtown is one of our key strategies, and at the top half of the street, if you will, we're doing pretty well,” says Greg Hitchin, the director of Waynesboro Economic Development. “We focused some of our entrepreneurial activities there, but we have these buildings at the bottom of the street here that just need some extra special help.”

At the Waynesboro City Council meeting on Monday, February 12, the developers are asking councilors to support a $600,000 application to the state's Industrial Revitalization Fund to help get the project going.

If everything works out, construction could start in 2019.

Bottom Alley Development Press Release:

A local team of developers is leading an effort to redevelop a one-time Downtown Waynesboro anchor building that has been vacant for more than a decade. The plans for the River City Collective include a common entrepreneurial space at 304-320 W. Main St. in Waynesboro, in the former Leggett’s building downtown.

Waynesboro City Council will vote tonight on a proposed resolution of support for a $600,000 Industrial Revitalization Loan Fund application being made by River City Collective.

“Revitalization of these premises will provide an inviting gateway to Downtown Waynesboro and represent the spirit of our entrepreneurial heritage,” said David Gauldin III of Bottom Alley Development, which is leading the redevelopment effort.

The 304-320 West Main building was for decades a hub of economic activity in Downtown Waynesboro, and the target is to have it play a similar role in the ongoing rebirth of the central business district.

“The objective is to bring like-minded people to eat, drink, shop, gather, and work while supporting the revitalization of Downtown Waynesboro,” Gauldin said. “The strategy for the Collective would be to support economic growth by creating platforms for developing entrepreneurial spirits to assemble and operate within a central shared space.”

A seven-figure redevelopment of the 304-320 West Main property being led by Bottom Alley Development and Mathers Construction, a Waynesboro-based construction firm, would be expected to come online in 2019.

“Our goal with this project is to support the shared community goals that reflect the focus of our community leaders and city planners as they seek solutions to moving Waynesboro forward,” Gauldin said.