Multiple projects in city reach near $40 million mark for year

Monday, September 10, 2001

Logan's Roadhouse is still on, Longhorn Steak House is out.

Even with one project off the drawing boards, August was a big month for permits for the Division of Inspection Services at Cape Girardeau, with more than 40 permits issued valued at more than $4.7 million.

Longhorn Steak House, after going through the process of receiving a building permit for a new restaurant at 3089 William St., has withdrawn its plans for Cape Girardeau.

Meanwhile, Logan's Roadhouse, which announced its intentions to locate near the William Street-Silver Springs intersection earlier this summer, has applied for its new building permit.

Logan, which operates a 76 restaurants in a dozen states, will debut in Missouri with the Cape Girardeau site slated for the 3000 block of William. Ralph McCracken, a senior vice president with the Nashville, Tenn.-based restaurant, said construction should get under way soon.

Longhorn Steakhouse, with headquarters in Atlanta, Ga., notified the city's inspection services of its withdrawal in mid-August.

One of the larger permits issued by the city's inspection services division was issued for the Deer Valley Townhouses, Phase I, for a five-unit complex in the 3000 block of Beavercreek Drive, valued at $1 million.

A permit was also issued for $750,000 for Clarkton Place complex. Over the past two months, 14 permits have been issued for new homes, valued for a combined total of almost $2 million, bringing the new-home total to 46 for the year.

Also on the new-building list for July and August were McDonald's Restaurant on Broadway, which is under construction; a new strip mall at 623 South Silver Springs Road, which is in the permitting process; Elfrink Trucking, a new structure at 1329 Southern Expressway, and Dexter Barbecue, which has applied for a building permit. The new strip mall will be the fourth strip mall center under construction this year.

The largest permit of the year was issued in April: a $17.5 million permit for the new Cape Central High School.

"We've had numerous permit requests for remodeling and expansions," said John H. Creutz, a plan review specialist with Inspection Services.

Expansion, remodeling

Over the past two months, permits have been issued for more than $980,000 for expansion and remodeling of Cape Girardeau Urology Associates at 3 Doctors Park; a $341,000 Southwestern Bell permit for replacement of a generator and a $373,000 Commerce Bank remodeling project.

With four months left, 2001 could go down as one of the top 10 construction years for the city. Remodeling is also under way at 97 N. Kingshighway, site of a new Su Hill Thai Restaurant.

Contractors have been busy throughout the year, averaging more than $4.6 million a month, to hit $37.4 million going into September.

A year ago, construction hit $42.6 million in the city, only the sixth time in Cape Girardeau construction history that levels reached the $40 million mark. The 2000 totals placed last year's figures at sixth on the overall list.

In 1999, fueled by a $9.8 million contract to build the Cape Girardeau Area Vocational Career Center at 1080 S. Silver Springs Road, and a $15 million city project, the city's construction numbers soared past the $60 million mark for the first time.

State totals down

Meanwhile, construction totals are down statewide.

The state's overall totals through July were down 2 percent, from $4.8 billion last year at this time, to $4.6 billion, as reported by F. W. Dodge Division of the McGraw-Hill Companies, which keeps up with the construction market.

The state's nonresidential construction to date was reported at $1.4 billion, down 16 percent from the $1.7 billion a year ago. That includes commercial, manufacturing, educational, religious, administrative, recreational, hotel, dormitory and other buildings.

Residential construction, which includes one- and two-family houses and apartments, is up slightly from a year ago. The 2001 totals are $1,985,178,000 compared to $1,964,433,000 a year ago.

Nonbuilding construction, which includes streets, highways, bridges, river and harbor developments, airports and a few other projects, is up 14 percent, from $1.1 billion to $1.3 billion.

Nationally, overall construction is up about 2 percent, compared to the same period a year ago. Nonresidential building is down about 5 percent, but increases were reported for residential building, up 4 percent, and nonbuilding construction, up 9 percent.

Geographically, the Dodge Report said total construction was up 5 percent in the West and 6 percent in the South Central. It was unchanged in the Midwest, down 1 percent in the South Atlantic and Northeast areas.

rowen@semissourian.com

335-6611, extension 133

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