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Hmm: 100 Acres Of Village At Sandhill (Possibly) To Be Sold For Taxes   32 comments

Posted at 10:35 pm in Uncategorized


The story at The State.

My first thought is that the headline is a bit sensational since we learn in the second paragraph that the tracts in question are currently vacant.

My second thought is that if Kahn Development loses the land, it loses control of the future of VAS.

Written by ted on December 6th, 2013

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32 Responses to 'Hmm: 100 Acres Of Village At Sandhill (Possibly) To Be Sold For Taxes'

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  1. 100 acres is approximately a third of the total size of the Village at Sandhill.

    Several people here like to rag on VaS as a failure when they don't interact with Northeast Richland that much for reasons beyond of the commenters on The State's article about this called it "another Columbia [Place] Mall forecast" in fact. Keep in mind that when it opened, JC Penney moved out of Columbia Place Mall into Village at Sandhill.

    I'm sure the Village at Sandhill will undergo changes like any major shopping development of its size. Many of them stem from decisions that retailers have had that go beyond sites where individual stores are located.

    Alan Bruce Kahn considers this his proudest accomplishment...and I have no doubt that many people that interact with Northeast Richland have enjoyed shopping at different spots throughout said village. I don't live in Northeast Richland currently but I have enjoyed it some myself.


    7 Dec 13 at 3:25 pm

  2. I don't think VAS has much of a future...


    9 Dec 13 at 7:32 am

  3. I think its future looks a lot like its present. It'll never be what it was supposed to have been, but what it is is plenty nice and, with the Two Notch corridor that it's essentially an extension of, serves a definite purpose in the northeast.

    I don't understand why anyone would root for or cheer its failure. A dead mall that size would not do anyone any favors, and would put a number of retailers off of Columbia.


    9 Dec 13 at 7:32 pm

  4. I agree with Jason. The original concept (size) was too grandiose for the area. For the developers to find and maintain quality tenants would have been nearly impossible.

    Between the stores already present in VaS along with the variety of stores and shops in all of the strip malls along Two Notch there's just about nothing that you can't already find.

    Filling out Vas with more specialty shops would not be financially responsible for the developers as niche shops have a greater chance of failure than stores that people are more familiar with. Of course, with the state of the economy today, no business is safe. They would be asking for more and more vacant stores.

    I think VaS is just fine as it is even if I do end up driving more than I would at a traditional mall. It always seems that the stores I need to visit are on the opposite ends.


    9 Dec 13 at 11:06 pm

  5. New urbanism is a failed concept. VaS is our local example of the failed fad.

    I heard they will be making a similar failed before it is built urban concept off US1 near i-20. Hopefully they'll come to their senses and delete the residential aspect from the project. It has a chance that way. But adding residential units doomed VaS.


    10 Dec 13 at 12:35 pm

  6. Columbia is NOT the place for this new type of "Community Mall" idea. Richland Mall was built for the same purpose back in the early 60's. It was/is a community Mall..always was and always will be. That's why it hasn't done diddly squirt since being rebuilt. VAS is the same thing.. there are too many other places to go to where items are much more affordable than what "The Village" can or could ever offer...unless you have money coming out your rear end OR you have Money Trees in your back yard. Something like this would do better in Charleston since that's where most of the rich people are. Columbia has rich people for sure..but they are SNOTTY and stuck up for the most part..though there are SOME exceptions. These Urban Malls never work..never have and never will because it's COLUMBIA. Seems people would learn this by now after nearly 53 years since Richland Mall was originally built.


    10 Dec 13 at 9:38 pm

  7. Note in thestate article that Kahn has 365 days to pay the taxes and retain control of the property, and has "let them ride" before. As he is in bankruptcy, this is just another big developer way to save a little money until he can sucker in some more tenants.


    11 Dec 13 at 12:31 am

  8. I think VAS could have worked out well but again it always comes down to what the area is like, demos etc. Not to mention it's a far drive from NW Columbia and didn't offer anything really in my opinion that Harbison area already had, although VAS definitely serves a purpose.

    It's probably the revenge of Columbia Place, the mall that didn't have to die.


    11 Dec 13 at 10:56 am

  9. It will get worse when Killian Crossing opens. Just think, it will be right off of 77. Who would drive another 10 miles down Clemson Rd from 77 to go to Sandhills? But how do those developers think this will be more successful than any other spot in Columbia. I always think to myself, what stores can go into Killian Crossing that we don't already have in Columbia? It's rumored that it will have a Cheesecake Factory (long overdue for Columbia). But what else could go in there? Another Sprint store, Boost Mobile? A Dave & Buster's would pull in a good crowd.....initially. Maybe a Joe's Crab Shack? Some upscale nightclubs would be nice. But we all know upscale night clubs eventually turn into "a hole in the wall" club. I would love to see Brixx come back to Columbia in Killian Crossing. Does anyone know what other stores are actually going to be in Killian Crossing?


    11 Dec 13 at 6:53 pm

  10. Here are some random ideas I have for stores that could come to Killian Crossing that we don't already have:

    - Harris Teeter (though I have my doubts about them fitting into the Columbia market at the moment)
    - Five Below
    - Costco (particularly if the infrastructure makes it conducive to develop in a more cost-effective method than what is derailing the Piney Grove site proposal)
    - California Pizza Kitchen
    - Lord & Taylor (though I think we are too far south for them)
    - Ikea
    - Crate & Barrel
    - OfficeMax (depending on how the OfficeMax/Office Depot merger works out)
    - Lowe's Foods

    It's also possible that DSW, GolfSmith, Buy Buy Baby or Babies R Us could open a second Columbia store to supplement their existing Harbison area locations.

    There are also perhaps other stores that don't have a Northeast location that are looking for one that Killian Crossing could be what they're looking for (perhaps Sandhill doesn't have the space for them or Killian Crossing being closer to I-77 makes it a better fit).

    DISCLAIMER: I do not know of any official plans for Killian Crossing and am not even sure of the name of the developer for it.


    11 Dec 13 at 8:45 pm

  11. Here's an update from The State.

    Apparently the 95 acre tract has been sold at auction for $850,000 -- less than the price of a couple of houses in Spring Valley.

    At first blush, this seems incredible, but then you see further on in the story that its a potential Charlie Brown/Lucy/Football sale: VAS LLC can still nullify the sale by paying the taxes, so naturally bidders will risk tying up less (and they have to go at least that high to cover the taxes).


    12 Dec 13 at 12:50 am

  12. Well, if you want to know why Richland County is considered unfriendly toward development of new business consider this: the annual payment of $328,934 that is due for 2013 on a 92.5-acre tract of UNIMPROVED land. Of course Mr. Kahn knew this going in years ago, but no one saw the deep and long recession looming. I seem to recall he was putting together a plan for a minor league ball park for the area at the time.


    12 Dec 13 at 2:08 am

  13. I don't think he ever got approval for the park, maybe I am wrong I can't remember. But I'm glad it's not there. Could you imagine the traffic at night in the Summer?


    12 Dec 13 at 10:44 am

  14. Richland County has an unreasoning attitude toward property tax. It is very high on business and is starting to become unreasonable on property owners. This one of the few states that continues to tax tangible property at an unreasonable rate.


    12 Dec 13 at 10:50 am

  15. I have to chuckle at the notion that the shopping at VaS is too high-end for we peasants of Columbia. There is nothing high-end, or really even mid-range, at that mall.


    12 Dec 13 at 4:48 pm

  16. "There is nothing high-end, or really even mid-range, at that mall."

    Except Arizona's. Prices are high and the food sucks. I had the $18.95 sirloin. It made me miss my normal Friday night spot at Outback on Two Notch Rd.


    12 Dec 13 at 6:00 pm

  17. I ate at Arizona's once with a coupon and it was still over over priced. I wished I had gone to Five Guys!!


    13 Dec 13 at 1:46 am

  18. wtf will Sandhills get demolished?


    15 Dec 13 at 7:01 pm

  19. No, the absolute worst case is something will go up on these currently vacant lots that doesn't fit with the rest of Sandhills.

    Then again, that bridge was crossed as soon as the Express Oil Change went up.


    15 Dec 13 at 8:28 pm

  20. Here come the title loan offices!!!!!


    15 Dec 13 at 9:08 pm

  21. The VAS concept was a nice thought, but not at all practical. Columbia Mall and that entire area was a jumpin' place through the 80's, but then everything seemed to have moved up the road towards Spring Valley and "Sessqueech" Park and up from there. The area where Target and Walmart is, is now a pain to get near during the traffic jams that it causes, while Decker and the lower side over there is as dead as the Latin Language. Sears made a HUGE mistake when they moved from 5-points to Columbia Urban Mall.


    17 Dec 13 at 12:05 am

  22. Never been a fan. Why would I want to shop somewhere that makes me go outside to go to the next store. Also it's not adjacent to the interstate so unless you live out that way, why bother. So much for the wrath of Kahn.

    Mr Bill

    17 Dec 13 at 10:08 am

  23. No, Toys R Us made a mistake when they pulled up shop from Dentsville altogether. I will order online before I even try to fight that West Columbia traffic. I'd love to see another toy store move to the Northeast area, but I doubt that will be a happening thing.

    Miz Terry

    18 Dec 13 at 9:46 am

  24. You're not likely to see any toy stores move anywhere, honestly. KB Toys is done, Toys R Us is moving away from brick and mortar (doing quite well online, though) and FAO Schwartz is owned by Toys R Us and only has one location anyway. Walmart, Target, and internet shopping pretty much spelled the end of the toy store.


    18 Dec 13 at 11:33 am

  25. Too bad Tons of Toys lost out to Toys-R-Us..I thought they had a better selection than TRU. I miss the old Hobby stores from the 70's on back too. Snipes is the one I went to the most..then over to Columbia Mall to "Leisure, or Leasure Time" that had the BIG clock in the front window.


    18 Dec 13 at 7:45 pm

  26. "Here's an update from The State.

    Apparently the 95 acre tract has been sold at auction for $850,000 -- less than the price of a couple of houses in Spring Valley.

    At first blush, this seems incredible, but then you see further on in the story that its a potential Charlie Brown/Lucy/Football sale: VAS LLC can still nullify the sale by paying the taxes, so naturally bidders will risk tying up less (and they have to go at least that high to cover the taxes).


    12 Dec 13 at 12:50 am "

    Didn't I say the same thing a day earlier? I just made the mistake of referencing your link, ted, to the story dated the 5th, instead of the story of the 10th (that I had read on my own apparently, lol) that you linked on the 12th.


    18 Dec 13 at 11:11 pm

  27. I believe that in the tax sale auction sould the current owner of the property pay his back taxes due within the 365 day period that he must also pay the high bidder 10% of the winning bid price, which in this instance would be a tidy sum of $85,000. Try walking into a bank and getting that for a one year return.


    19 Dec 13 at 4:19 am

  28. Terry, that is very interesting, I did not know that. Is the high bidder's $850,000 held in escrow until the current owner pays the taxes or 365 days have passed which ever comes first, or does he only have to come up with the money when the time comes for him to take ownership?


    20 Dec 13 at 10:29 pm

  29. JBL, see page two of this link

    I do not know if the entire % would be due the buyer if the back-taxes were paid off before the 365 day limit. If so, there is no advantage to paying the delinquent amount off early.


    21 Dec 13 at 4:15 am

  30. Thanks for the link, Terry.


    22 Dec 13 at 8:47 pm

  31. The times I visited Columbia I loved going to Sandhills eating and shopping. I would hate to see the place go down.


    8 Jan 14 at 5:02 pm

  32. Well, according to The State this did finally happen. Kahn lost the Bi-Lo wing of Sandhill, the Sandhill condos and the undevloped Sandhill parcel.


    5 Dec 14 at 2:38 am

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