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Rendering of planned Northgate project

Rendering of planned Northgate projectd

A $26 million office and retail development in the Delmar Loop is among four St. Louis projects that won support Wednesday for a public tax incentive.

Pace Properties plans to build its three-story Northgate project on the site of the gas station at the northwest corner of Delmar and North Skinker boulevards.

After about an hour of discussion, the city’s Tax Increment Financing Commission voted 5-1, with three abstentions, to support the project with nearly $4.4 million in TIF aid.

Pace hopes to begin construction in September and complete the project late next year. The developer plans to anchor the street-level retail space with a national drugstore chain outlet but Rob Sherwood, Pace’s director of acquisitions, said a tenant had yet to be obtained.

Offices are planned for the two upper floors. In addition to the gas station, the project site includes a parking lot and one-story office building owned by Washington University. Pace is proposing 50,000 square feet of offices and 15,000 square feet of retail space.

Pace cannot complete site acquisition until it reaches a deal with Circle K to buy out its lease of the gas station.

Also getting support Wednesday for TIF assistance is the project by Green Street Properties to renovate the old Armory in the 3600 block of Market Street.

The $84 million project encompasses Armory renovation, rehab of the small building next door as offices and a craft brewery and construction of a parking garage and an approximately 135-room hotel an an adjacent lot. Green Street plans three levels of “next generation” office space in the long-vacant Armory, opened in 1938 to house a Missouri National Guard battalion.

TIF assistance of $8.9 million would help Green Street replace necessary infrastructure.

Brian Pratt, Green Street’s vice president for development, said the firm was in talks with potential operators of the hotel planned for a spot next to the Grand MetroLink station.

In addition to TIF help, Green Street plans for the Armory project use of state and federal historic tax credits, plus Missouri brownfield tax credits.

Such credits also are planned for the $103 million renovation of the empty and deteriorated Jefferson Arms at 410 North Tucker Boulevard downtown.

TIF commissioners voted to support the project with $17.4 million in TIF help.

Dallas-based developer Alterrra International has the 13-story building under contract and plans to buy the old hotel this spring. Proposed by Alterra are 239 apartments, a 198-room Marriott-brand hotel, a furniture store and restaurants.

Otis Williams, SLDC’s executive director, said the project was difficult and deserved tax incentives.

“The marketplace is not going to get it done without some help from the public,” he said.

Alterra officials have said they hope to complete the project in late 2019.

TIF commissioners also voted to support the next phase of the Cortex Innovation District development. Cortex officials want to tap about $20 million in TIF help for its development of an Aloft hotel, an office and laboratory building and a third building to combine apartments and a parking garage within the Central West End tech district.