Go inside the new One West Victory development - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

One West Victory takes shape

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SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) -

Victory Drive: a vision of mansions, draping live oaks, and a trip to the beach, but when you put west in front of Victory, it's a different vision.

For the past year, an Atlanta-based developer has working to breathe new life into the area; their development is called, One West Victory. It's a mix of housing, a new restaurant, and a coffee bar. I got the first tour of the site.

There's a marked difference on Victory Drive when you cross the railroad tracks at Bull Street, but this summer, the old Savannah Ice company that's sat dormant and dilapidated for a decade will be transformed.

Hank Farmer is the development manager from Jamestown LP for One West Victory. He admits the company has owned the building for seven years.  he says his company has owned this building for seven years.

"We feel like we have the right development at the right time," said Farmer. "We think there's a lot of cool local flavor going on over here." Farmer sites with the Starland District just up the way off Bull Street, other SCAD dorms in the area, the development seemed to fit.

Farmer also says the 1890 building's integrity will remain with a modern flair. "We came up with this idea, where you see this building is a j-shape that wraps around the two historic structures, the parking deck sits behind the restaurant."

The developers think a restaurant, a coffee bar, and housing for more 338 people, targeting potential tenants like college students, is right for the area, and the people who live and work in there agree.

Gary Gorton, owner of 520 wings, says he's reaping the benefits already. The construction workers have already given him more business. 

"I'm very excited about it," said Gorton. "We get a lot of foot traffic, so that's very important when it comes to having a predominantly to-go wing business, so we'll definitely be looking forward to all the up and coming foot traffic coming this way."

Now, traffic along Victory is a narrow squeeze, so the developer thought of that and the only way in and out of the complex is off Barnard Street. 

So where will the hundreds of new residents park? The City of Savannah went back and forth and finally approved a parking deck, the only one between downtown and Oglethorpe Mall.

The modern flair doesn't end with aesthetics; they have a new keyless entry to the complex and to the homes inside. "It allows for enhanced security and also it's similar to getting a hotel key, except it just doesn't go dead in your pocket if you put it next to your cell phone," Farmer said.

As for the restaurant and coffee bar that all can enjoy, a cool feature is the upstairs outdoor patio that was once the Savannah Ice company. Plus, it has a 6000-lb. pizza oven imported from Italy. It can cook a pizza in 80 seconds.

The celebrity chef, Hugh Acheson, is behind the restaurant named The Florence. The whole site should be available in early summer 2014.

So as developers are changing the face of this well-known corner of Savannah, they hope to bridge the divide between West Victory and East. 

For more information about One West Victory, please call 912.236.0001 or visit online at www.onewestvictory.com.

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