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April 07. 2013 10:22PM

Proposal made on empty Chestnut Street police station in Manchester

MANCHESTER - A real estate investor has made an offer on the empty Chestnut Street police station although the agent hired to market the building says it is nowhere near the $2.1 million asking price.

Michael Reed of Stebbins Commercial Properties would not identify the potential buyer or the amount of the offer made last Monday. He said it was his understanding the investor wants to renovate the building for multiple uses for two or three tenants.

Mayor Ted Gatsas said City Solicitor Tom Clark, Finance Director William Sanders and Reed are reviewing the proposed contract to work things out in it.

Gatsas said they are in the "middle of negotiations" and it would be improper for him to disclose who made the offer or the amount.

He does not expect the proposal will be presented at the next meeting of the Board of Mayor and Aldermen.

"We'll just keep working on it and hopefully we'll get somebody in it who is going to create jobs and change the look of the old police station," Gatsas said.

Reed said the proposed contract is about 25 pages long, so it may take some time for the review. Once the contract is worked out and presented to the aldermanic board, members will have the option of accepting it, rejecting it or making a counter-offer.

The building has been on the market since December, after police moved to a new modern and spacious one on Valley Street.

Reed said about a half-dozen people looked at the building; half had some moderate interest in it, while the others had a higher level of interest.

The $2.1 million asking price for the 351 Chestnut St. building, built in 1976 and renovated in 2007, is "as is" and does not include the cost of a refit, Reed said. It comes complete with a cell block and firing range in the basement.

Taxes on the 45,956-square-foot building (33,000 square feet usable) are estimated at $56,000, according to the online listing.

pgrossmith@unionleader.com


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