7-story project on Dickson Street continues forward

The plans now head to a subcommittee for review before going to the Planning Commission
A lot at the southwest corner of Dickson Street and Block Avenue is shown in this photo from Friday, May 24, 2024. Developers are planning a seven-story building on the property. (Flyer photo/Todd Gill)

Plans for a new seven-story building on Dickson Street continue to move forward.

The city’s Technical Plat Review Committee last week forwarded the project to the Planning Commission’s Subdivision Committee, and City Council members on Tuesday approved a vacation request needed to construct the new building.

Indiana-based developers Trinitas Ventures have plans for a mixed-use building on the vacant lot across from the post office and the adjacent land where Diamond Center sits between Block and Church avenues.

Trinitas is the same company behind the Atmosphere student apartments at Duncan Avenue and Center Street, and a planned six-story, 700-bed complex on Center Street next to the Razorback Greenway.

The Dickson Street plans call for about 600 bedrooms and 400 underground parking spaces. The project would also include street-level retail space and a rooftop pool.

The Subdivision Committee will review the plans on May 30. After that, the project heads to the Planning Commission for final approval on June 10.

A public notice sign stands at 151 W. Dickson St. with information about upcoming meetings concerning a proposed seven-story development on the property. (Flyer photo/Todd Gill)

Property history

This isn’t the first time that developers have considered building something on the property.

A group of investors led by UA graduate James Chase purchased the land in 2017 for $4.4 million from local businessman Mel Collier under a company called 151 Dickson Development, LLC with plans for a mixed-use development.

Not much has happened since then, though a building at the northwest corner of the property was remodeled in 2021 and became home to Diamond Center after the jewelry store relocated to Dickson Street from the Northwest Arkansas Mall.

A rendering shows a proposed seven-story building on Dickson Street near Church Avenue. (Courtesy/City of Fayetteville)

Before that, Specialized Real Estate Group was under contract to purchase the land in 2014 with plans for their own mixed-use project. Those plans, however were abandoned after a neighbor worked to prevent the development which led to a home protection ordinance being passed by the City Council. That rule requires structures taller than 24 feet to be built at least 15 feet from the side and rear property lines of houses that are being used as single-family residences. City staff said that rule won’t apply to the new project since the neighboring house is no longer being used as a home.

In 2006, the land was the proposed site for a hotel and condominium project called Divinity on Dickson from developer Brandon Barber. That project was also met with opposition from residents who said it was too big for the area and would cause traffic problems that could destroy the vibe of Dickson Street. Barber was denied a permit by the Planning Commission, but the project was approved by the City Council during an appeal process. The council’s decision sparked a lawsuit from a neighbor, but the development fell through after Barber cited financial issues related to the project.

A 2006 rendering by HKS shows what a nine-story hotel and condominium building called Divinity on Dickson might’ve looked like if it had been developed. (Courtesy/City of Fayetteville)