Two more Bay St. buildings sold

Downtown Port Orchard is once again abuzz with the news that two more of its historic downtown buildings have been sold for potential future development —and the City Council is poised to make sure it controls how that development proceeds.

Several of Port Orchard’s Bay Street buildings were optioned several months ago to a group of investors represented by real estate broker Rich Clauson. Clauson started making offers to building owners last fall in hopes of fostering a massive overhaul of the downtown area.

Howard Minor’s buildings — the Applegate building next to Myhre’s also known as the original theater building and the “mall” at the end of that block — were optioned by Clauson for $1 million.

The most recent acquisition of two large downtown buildings, the Olde Central Antique Mall at Bay Street and Sidney Avenue for $625,000 and the building that houses Sidney Village and the Dance Gallery at Bay Street and Frederick Avenue for $725,000, by Shoush Holdings LLC, might make Clauson’s continuing interest in acquiring all of downtown Port Orchard a little more complicated.

Regardless of who ends up owning the downtown buildings, said Port Orchard Mayor Kim Abel, development is coming and it’s coming soon.

Abel reported a total of four developers interested in revitalizing Bay Street.

Consequently, the city of Port Orchard has scheduled a work-study session for next month intended to unite the Planning Commission and City Council in reviewing the city’s existing building and development rules.

“It’s the beginning of a review of existing rules,” Abel said, “some long-standing, some newer. It’s really important to see what it’s currently like to develop in our downtown, with the existing rules.”

Abel said the city needs to set some direction for the upcoming onslaught of development requests, whether it be upholding its downtown codes and regulations or updating them.

“I’m excited to make Port Orchard’s downtown more walkable and livable,” Abel said. “I’m looking forward to the development. It’s Port Orchard’s turn.”

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