Harrison St. construction breaks 50-year dryspell

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A prominent Harrison Arts District landowner has recently unveiled plans for an extreme makeover of the California-style apartment building he owns at the southeast corner of Harrison Street and Taylor Avenue.

Chris Kleronomos would not disclose the cost the rehab, but said it went "well into seven figures."

"We're very excited," Kleronomos said. "It will be a nice addition to the neighborhood."

April Moon of F.C. Pilgrim & Co. is the real estate agent for the 900 S. Taylor building, marketed as "Gallery 900."

"I think it's really going to spur development in the Harrison Arts District," Moon said.

The gut rehab will leave the building's all-steel structure in place while completely remaking everything inside. The 12 former apartments will be replaced by six condominiums, starting at $389,900 each with finishes common to more expensive units, Moon said.

Some of those finishes include hardwood floors laid at a diagonal, finished basements, and kitchens designed by River Forester Mark Menna with standard stainless steel appliances.

"[Kleronomos] is using cabinets that we use on $800,000 condos," Moon said, adding that many condo buyers can expect to spend $15,000 to $25,000 on upgrades in many projects. "He's giving them as standard on this project."

The units range in size from 2,400 to 2,700 square feet, Kleronomos said.

Moon and Kleronomos said the work on the building was the first construction of its kind in 50 years on Harrison Street east of Ridgeland Avenue.

Kleronomos emptied tenants from the building more than a year ago in anticipation of the rehab project. Delays in creating architectural drawings dragged the project on longer than anticipated, he said.

He would not say who the architects working on the project were.

Kleronomos hopes construction will be finished by the end of July or early August.

Kleronomos does not have immediate plans to improve any of the other buildings his family owns in the Arts District, but said he hopes?#34;God willing"?#34;to start another project in the next year, perhaps a mixed-use project with first-floor retail.

He added that he hoped the improvement of 900 S. Taylor would "trigger investment by others, as well."

?#34;Drew Carter

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