Our View: Investments in downtown keep coming

Published 10:07 am Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Friday, yet another investment in downtown Winchester was announced, adding to the surge of positivity in the historic district of the community.

The new owners of the 113-year-old Brown Proctor building unveiled plans for a nearly $4 million renovation to the apartment building Friday. Including the purchase of the building near the intersection of Main Street and Lexington Avenue, the price tag for the project will reach more than $8 million, Winterwood Property Management CEO Mike Hynes said Friday.

Over the next 10 months, the company plans to renovate the building, which once housed the Brown Proctor Hotel, and update each of the 49 apartments, improve mechanical systems of the building and restore the facade on South Main Street. Each of these measures will play a vital role in preserving the integrity of a downtown landmark, one that holds dear memories for many in the community and adds beauty to the cityscape.

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The building was built in 1905 as a luxury hotel and was converted in 1982 to affordable housing for senior citizens and adults with disabilities.

The property has had its share of issues and it is great to see a company want to invest so much energy and money into improving the quality of life for the residents of Brown Proctor but also to improve the downtown community they call home.

This investment is the latest in a series of exciting ventures that will lay the groundwork for a brighter future for downtown Winchester — the renovations of Engine House Pizza Pub and ThirtyNine Main, restoration and painting of the facade of three buildings at the corner of Main and Broadway streets, restoration of the courthouse clock tower, restoration of the D&S Hardware and Howard’s Overhead Doors locations on North Main Street, the renovations at Leeds Center for the Arts, the purchase and renovations of the former Thoroughbred Gymnastics building to become a daycare and community center, establishing North Main Street as an arts district and much more.

All of these incredible investments by people who have a vision for downtown Winchester will only be made greater by the improvements to infrastructure and accessibility that are part of the Downtown Master Plan.

It is exciting and encouraging to see so much activity in the downtown area.