The Conway Development Corporation has secured financing to purchase the old airport property and is working with a different developer after Jim Wilson & Associates (JWA) pulled out of the deal, city officials confirmed Tuesday.
Brad Lacy, CDC and Conway Area Chamber of Commerce CEO and president, said the CDC is “in a due diligence period with a partner/developer,” meaning he can’t announce the company at this time.
He said changing partners hasn’t changed the vision for the Central Landing development.
“We have always intended and said that the project will be mixed use. That is still the plan,” Lacy said. “It’s an incredible piece of property. We are committed to seeing it developed in a way that brings value to its neighbors and all of Conway.”
Mayor Bart Castleberry said closing the deal is imminent as it is now in the hands of the bank and title company.
“They’ve got the money; we’re just waiting to sign the papers,” he said.
Lacy said he expects a closing date to be set for late November or early December.
In an emailed statement, JWA CEO and President Will Wilson said the company had to withdraw from the project due to “the impact of the changing national retail environment, combined with JWA’s focus on other projects.”
“Jim Wilson & Associates (JWA) has valued its time and the relationships formed while working with the City of Conway and the Conway Development Corporation,” Wilson said. “JWA appreciates the efforts by the city and the Conway Development Corporation to work through this transition.
“JWA commends the positive aspects of the redevelopment of Cantrell Field as the city continues to move ahead with a new time line and direction.”