Macado’s owner purchases old Roanoke Times press building, plans to develop luxury apartments

Published: Feb. 22, 2022 at 10:15 PM EST
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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - From ground level, the former Roanoke Times press building doesn’t scream luxury apartments, but that’s what Macado’s Restaurant chain owner Richard Macher sees in his new building.

Macher opened his first Macado’s downtown in 1978. He now has 19 locations across the valley and is focused on bringing the next great thing to downtown: 60-70 apartments inside a building that will be “meant to entertain.”

201 Campbell Avenue SW has existed since 2001 and will offer Macher roughly 55,000 square feet for the endeavor. It’s the view from a few stories up that Macher says sells the idea.

“The middle here is going to go all the way to the ceiling with the atrium and then you’ve got the apartments all in here,” Macher said, describing what the future layout will include.

The name of the Press Building will stay but everything else will go, including a top-of-the-line German printing press, the Heildelberg Mainstream 80. It was installed in October 2003, and hasn’t been used since 2017. To remove it will cost Macher more than $1 million, a fraction of the machine’s total cost: $31.6 million.

While getting the press and the press table out needs to happen before a rooftop pool or possibly a climbing wall is installed, Macher has big plans for the space. Every attraction for the building will be highlighted by the views.

“The views here are just incredible, view of the mountains, Virginia museum, going this way you’ve got the church, Gainsboro area, just beautiful,” marveled Macher, as he looked through the large windows, standing next to the spot where the press is kept.

Macher has plans to keep some of the old newspapers and signs that are scattered around, a tribute to history.

Macher plans to close on the property within the next few weeks and will begin construction within the next few months. The goal is for the project to be completed by 2024.

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