Downtown Springdale property sold for $4.96M; redevelopment on the way

by Paul Gatling ([email protected]) 6,236 views 

First Security Bank complex at 100 W. Emma Ave. in downtown Springdale.

An investment group with Springdale ties has completed a $4.96 million deal to buy the First Security Bank complex and associated parking lots at 100 W. Emma Ave in downtown Springdale with plans to redevelop the main building.

Emma Building Group is the new owner. According to a news release, the investors’ plans for a new downtown multi-use building include residential, retail, restaurant and office use. The property that changed hands consists of the two-story, 30,000-square-foot First Security Bank building — which will be redeveloped — and 10,000-square-foot “Barrack” building fronting Turnbow Park.

Searcy-based First Security Bank was the previous owner.

“These are exciting times in Springdale,” said Don Harris, a partner with developer Tom Lundstrom in Shiloh Capital and investor in the Emma Building Group. Shiloh Capital is a Springdale-based private investment firm specializing in the design, implementation and conforming operation of Qualified Opportunity Zone (QOZ) enterprises and investments. “The Emma Building Group team continues to be bullish on the future of downtown Springdale. Our current properties, including Little Emma apartments and the ‘Fuels & Supplies’ building have received strong interest from residential and commercial tenants. Later this year we hope to begin work on a second multifamily development on the south side of Emma Avenue near Luther George Park.

“Being part of the team renovating a reimagined First Security Bank property in its location adjacent to Turnbow Park is another positive step forward downtown.”

First Security still owns the single-story, 5,000-square-foot bank annex at 110-112 W. Emma and will renovate that building into a new downtown branch.

“We have been fortunate to see growth and progress in downtown Springdale in recent months,” said Adam Rutledge, NWA market leader for First Security Bank. “We want to continue to do our part.”

First Security began helping with the improvement in downtown Springdale by turning the old buildings behind the branch into retail space—the “Barrack” building. Tenants there include Phat Tire Bike Shop, real estate office Engel & Völkers and Con Quesos restaurant.

Rutledge said seeing the bank’s long-term vision of associating with the right partner to invest in the downtown building took time to come to fruition but was worth the wait.

“I have no doubt that Springdale and its residents will benefit,” he said.

Occupancy of the existing First Security building is expected in late 2022 and pre-leasing has started. Cromwell Architects has leased 5,000 square feet of office space on the second floor and will be the first tenant in the building as well as the project architects.

“This is an exciting adaptive re-use project in an iconic mid-century modern building,” said Josh Danish, Cromwell’s NWA regional director. “It’s significant in terms of growth and community development for downtown Springdale and for us as well, with enough space to more than double the size of our office from 9 to 20 employees.”

Paul Esterer, principal and managing director, Zack Kifer, principal and vice president of brokerage and Jeff Snyder, brokerage director and designated executive broker with Moses Tucker Partners represented the buyer and seller in the transaction and will be the property management and leasing firm for the property.

“We look to continue the success of Moses Tucker Partners as a commercial real estate advisor and leader in revitalizing downtowns throughout the state of Arkansas,” Kifer said.

SCM Architects are the architects of the First Security Bank branch project and construction of the new building is expected to be completed by the third quarter of 2023. Cromwell Architects is leading the design work for the multi-use building.

CR Crawford Construction is the construction company for both projects.