Jordheim: UK company didn’t live up to contract after announcing purchase
Following the breakdown of a proposed deal, downtown Dickinson’s tallest building is once again on the market.
Last year, an investment group based in the United Kingdom entered into a contract to purchase the Jordheim Plaza complex. Though, according to building owner Lori Jordheim, the deal fell through when the group failed to keep up with its obligations.
“We had a contract for deed, so the building was under contract to be purchased,” Jordheim said. “Essentially what happened is they weren’t able to live up to their end of the contract. They didn’t fulfill their obligations to the contract and the property came back to us.”
Jordheim said the contract was entered into by a company called NDD Holdings1 LLC, which, at that time, was a subsidiary of UK investment company Property Horizons.
During a February interview for a story that appeared in The Press, Property Horizons CEO Robert Gavin said his group had “acquired” the plaza and planned to refurbish the site to feature a hotel, business center, fitness center and a “fine dining” restaurant. Through a London marketing firm, Property Horizons even sent out a detailed press release in early 2013 trumpeting the project.
A contact phone number listed on Property Horizons’ website was disconnected as of Tuesday and messages left by The Press on the company’s Facebook page called “North Dakota Developments LLC” went unreturned Monday and Tuesday. In a post dated Jan. 3 on the Facebook site, it lists a Robert Gavin as being the group’s CEO.
In February, Gavin said Property Horizons had plans for developments in Watford City and Williston and has developed sites in New York, Florida and Michigan.
Jordheim said the plaza is listed for $2.4 million through Dickinson real estate agency Home and Land Company.
Built in 1952, the plaza — formerly the Old Ivanhoe Inn — is listed as 88 feet tall and towers above most downtown structures. It’s the second-tallest building in Dickinson, coming in 2 feet shorter than St. Joseph’s Hospital.
“We had two large contractors look at the building,” Jordheim said. “They were looking at the possibility of turning the building into either partial office space or apartment-type space, or office and retail. We had a couple of different scenarios. It would have been a large project, though, and we decided to put it back on the market.”
Diane Duchscher of Home and Land said the property was listed again on Dec. 4.
“We’ve had some interest on the property,” Duchscher said. “It certainly is a great opportunity for any interested party.”
Jordeim said she still believes the plaza could be an enhancing piece to the puzzle that is downtown Dickinson revitalization.
“I just think that it’s such a core of the downtown area that the right person or the business is going to come along and re-do it to help refurbish Dickinson’s downtown,” Jordheim said. “When we purchased the building in 1995, we did a three-floor remodel. If somebody has a goal for what the building can be five years from now or two years from now, there is an opportunity there.”
Dickinson city administrator Shawn Kessel agreed with Jordheim and said additional housing units would be a plus.
“The renovation and use of the current Jorheim building would serve as a catalyst for additional downtown redevelopment,” Kessel stated in an email to The Press. “Especially if there was a residential component to the renovations.”