The Mill Street Townhomes were demolished to make room for a new student housing complex that will open its doors Aug. 15.
Andrew Freeman, development operations coordinator for the city of San Marcos, said The Dovetail Companies purchased the property from Tim Olwell , owner of the Mill Street Townhomes, in July. The land will be used for the construction of Wildwood, a student apartment complex. While no residents were evicted from the townhomes, Olwell said residents received a letter on June 1 informing them of a 60-day deadline to move out.
Mike Swope, director of marketing for The Dovetail Companies, said he was unsure of how much the property formerly occupied by Mill Street Townhomes was purchased for. Olwell would not comment on the property’s price.
Olwell said The Dovetail Companies first approached him regarding buying his property about a year ago, and negotiating the deal took a long time.
The Dovetail Companies bought the eight lots of land Olwell owned to add to the areas already purchased behind the Mill Street Townhomes for Wildwood. Olwell said The Dovetail Companies needed his acreage to develop the larger complex.
“They bought (my lots) and they bulldozed them and they’re going to create a great big housing area for students,” Olwell said.
Swope said The Dovetail Companies purchased the property for Wildwood because its proximity to campus and location on the Bobcat Tram bus route makes it a good place for student housing.
Olwell said the majority of Mill Street Townhomes residents let their leases run out, and two or three units needed to be bought out of their leases. He said residents were notified that if they moved out early there would be no penalty, and if residents did not owe him money they received their deposit back.
Olwell said he gave residents who moved out before July 1 extra money to help them with the expenses of a new apartment since he “was forcing them” to move out. There was no penalty if residents had to be bought out of their lease, but he did not give them extra funds.
“We wanted (residents) to get out so I could get ready for the sale,” Olwell said. “But they all got something. Nobody was forced out with anything.”
Olwell said residents who owed back rent and were going to be evicted were not included in the incentives.
No Texas State students lived in the Mill Street Townhomes, Olwell said. The townhomes were two bedroom, one bath “starter family housing” that many young unmarried people lived in with children. Some residents were also of retirement age.
“We tried to be very good to the people,” Olwell said. “I think I was as fair as I possibly could’ve been.”
Swope said this is The Dovetail Companies’ first property in San Marcos. The Athens, Ga. based developer also hopes to build a similar student housing complex at Cape’s Camp.