CPM Development considers a new project at northwest corner of Lake & James

CPM Development has spent years trying to buy four buildings for redevelopment at the northwest corner of Lake & James. Now the property is under contract, but a project might not take shape anytime soon, if at all.

The buildings at 1700, 1704, 1708 and 1714 W. Lake include residences and assorted businesses including a massage parlor and salon.

CPM met with the East Isles Residents Association (ERIA) in mid-March to pitch the idea of a six-story condo building with one level of underground parking.

Members of the EIRA Zoning & Land Use Committee said they wouldn’t support the idea. They said it’s too tall, particularly given that the site is within a district that limits height to two-and-a-half stories to protect the nearby lakes.

Consequently, CPM might pass on the purchase.

“We don’t want to push too hard,” said CPM co-founder Nick Walton. “If we can’t do six stories on the site, it doesn’t work. That might be the end of the conversation.”

Walton said that given the land price, the project would need a sixth floor to reach a positive return on investment. He said CPM’s purchase option expires in 30 days.

“It’s not that we’re opposed to redevelopment, just the height,” said EIRA committee member Jill Waite.

CPM also developed the 1800 Lake apartments on the western side of the block, and has proposed a three-story project across the street, on the northeast corner of Lake & James.