This Macon tour includes the past, the new and the future

NewTown Macon’s Tour of Progress on Wednesday begins at the Oldhams/Spearman Lofts project at 518 Mulberry St.
NewTown Macon’s Tour of Progress on Wednesday begins at the Oldhams/Spearman Lofts project at 518 Mulberry St.

Instead holding an annual meeting with speakers saying what’s going on downtown, NewTown Macon is holding a sort of show-and-tell tour of current and recently completed projects.

The free Tour of Progress 30-minute walking tours will be held 5-7 p.m. Wednesday, and participants will be able to explore six to 10 projects in downtown Macon and be able to hear about the building’s history, construction and future goals, according to a news release. Tours, which are open to the public, leave every 30 minutes from 518 Mulberry St. at the corner of Mulberry and Third streets. The final tour will leave at 6:30 p.m.

At the end of each tour, participants are invited to Travis Jean Gallery at 530 Cherry St. for refreshments. At the end of the final tour, about 7 p.m., the winners of this year’s Partners in Progress Awards will be announced.

The tour includes information about:

▪  520 Mulberry St., Oldhams/Spearman Lofts. NewTown bought this property through its transitional property fund and decided to develop it. Existing tenants, Oldham’s Opticians and Harp & Bowl, will remain during the renovation. Plans include 12 loft apartments on the upper three floors and is expected to be completed in June 2018.

▪  610 Mulberry St., renovation project at Lawrence Mayer, which will remain, includes adding a restaurant space on the Cotton Avenue side of the first floor. Also 10 apartment units will be added to the second and third floors and they will include outdoor decks at the back of the building.

▪  332 Second St., Mercer University will be revitalizing the nearly 10,000-square-foot building for a university gallery and studio spaces for its undergraduate art students. The upstairs will be studios for students.

▪  368 Second St., The Bodega, a small-scale convenience store, opened earlier this year and while it’s still growing its stock, it offers soda, beer, house cleaning items and a small assortment of food items.

▪  350 Second St., NewTown Macon has entered into an agreement with the Moonhanger Group to explore the possibility of developing a nine-room boutique hotel.

▪  365 Cotton Ave., Hammond Organ, which recently moved here from Savannah. The company sells and services new and used pianos and organs.

▪  623 Cherry St., Dot’s Forget Me Knots has reopened after a 10-month renovation project. The two top floors have full-floor, two-bedroom lofts which have been leased.

▪  496 Second St., the former Ginger Stir Fry & Grill has been closed since late August when it was sold. The new owner expects to open this fall as Oliver’s Corner Bistro.

▪  566 Cherry St., Reboot Retrocade & Bar, which moved into a vacant storefront, is a bar, arcade, game lounge and art gallery.

Linda S. Morris: 478-744-4223, @MidGaBiz