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Canal Tower Plans Revived

“There are a number of prospective tenants in the market that would need the space,” Kreckman says. One of the biggest said to be looking for space is BB&T Corp. Local real estate brokers say the bank is looking to consolidate its Virginia headquarters and its brokerage operations — BB&T Capital Markets and Scott & Stringfellow — in the near future. BB&T needs about 120,000 square feet of space.

The new 250,000-square-foot office building would be more than twice the size of the Turning Basin Building on Virginia Street, home to First Market Bank and Morton’s Steakhouse, which opened in 2001. The tower also would include about 14,000 square feet for retail, possibly a restaurant.

In addition to the improving economy, Kreckman says that prospective tenants are excited about the Canal Walk area, especially with the new office and retail development underway on Brown’s Island.

Before building can begin, however, Highwoods needs tenants. About 50 percent of the building must be pre-leased before financing for the project can be secured, Kreckman says, which is standard in the real estate business.

But finding the tenants shouldn’t be a problem, he says. “The market’s just getting a little better.” — Scott Bass

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