SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - The landscape is changing in downtown Savannah along the Savannah River.
Tuesday was the official groundbreaking for the Eastern Wharf Project, which is the area down near General McIntosh Boulevard and East President Street. You may remember it under it’s former project name a decade ago as Savannah River Landing. This is a public, private partnership between the partners involved in the project and the City of Savannah.
Even though this was the official groundbreaking for the Eastern Wharf phase one, anyone passing by the site on boarding President Street in recent months knows dirt has been moving for a while.
Already a residential unit is up, and the site will include hotel projected to rise 12 stories, office space, and tens of thousands of square feet of retail space.
“We’re so excited that this is going to be Savannah. That’s what I want everybody to understand. This is a part of Savannah. We’re stretching Savannah on both ends here," said Savannah Mayor Eddie DeLoach.
Several from the project team emphasized how much of an honor it is to be a part of the Eastern Wharf plan, adding that there’s also a huge responsibility to make sure what’s built endures and stands the test of time.
“We will be a part of this city. We’re not going to be a separate, one-off project. We’re not going to be a development project with our name at the front door. We’re going to be a part of the fabric of the city," said Mariner Group Principal, Trent Germano.
Part of the partnership between the developers and the city includes a parking garage.
“A combination of residential, retail, hotel and office in our first phase is very important to us, and the value of that first phase is roughly $225 million. Embedded in that first phase is a city garage. We’re building 400 spaces and the city is building 700 spaces, and we are joined at the hip. We’re each paying for our own thing, we’re joined at the hip," Germano said at the groundbreaking.