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New twists planned for redevelopment of old mill at Dan River Inc.
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New twists planned for redevelopment of old mill at Dan River Inc.

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New apartments and new commercial space -- and a couple of surprise concepts -- are coming to the White Mill building at at the former Dan River Inc. site. 

Details of this $62.5 million project, a joint venture between Madison, Wisconsin-based The Alexander Company and the Danville Industrial Development Authority, emerged on Monday morning. 

There will be 110,000 square feet of commercial space, 150 apartment units (with an additional 100 units in the future) and 219 interior parking spaces.

But the plans also include restoration of the covered bridge that spans the Dan River from the north side of the White Mill to the former Long Mill site. 

The bridge will be for pedestrians and will connect the north and south sides of the Riverwalk Trail. The IDA will use grants for asbestos and lead abatement and removal of the bridge's metal panels, a news release from the city stated.  

And there are plans to use the canal on the south side of the building as a whitewater feature and to provide about 1.12 acres fronting the Dan River for an extension of the Riverwalk Trail.

The project is expected to be completed in summer 2023, around the same time as the Caesars Virginia casino resort project at the former Dan River Inc. site in Schoolfield. 

"This is a transformational project for our city, and it is only fitting that we make this announcement nearly 100 years after construction was completed on this building, which served as Dan River Mill No. 8, but we know better simply as the White Mill," Mayor Alonzo Jones said in a prepared statement. "With this partnership in place, we celebrate new life for this historic building that will serve us for the next 100 years."

Joe Alexander, president of The Alexander Company, said, "We're excited to have found a path that embraces its prominent setting along the Dan River, and are eager to continue our partnership with the city of Danville and its development authority to realize that goal."  

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