Danville, VA -- If you are looking for a place to live in Danville, many say downtown is the perfect spot.There is an open house Thursday night for the Smith Seeds Apartments on Lynn Street. It it's the latest of many to pop up in downtown Danville.
Susan Stilwell has seen the potential of downtown Danville for years. She became one of the first residents of the River District in 2005.
"I always felt it was something that could happen here," said Stilwell.
Since then, she has shown others the benefits of downtown living, as a real estate broker. In just the last few years, Stilwell says dozens of people have moved into several of the new apartments.
"I say it is exciting! It's wonderful to go out in the sidewalk and you are seeing people after 5 o'clock," said Stilwell.
Now, yet another once vacant building, Smith Seeds, has been converted into lofts.
"It's become very fashionable to live downtown," said Hampton Wilkins, President of Wilkins and Co.
Hampton Wilkins's company rents out those apartments. He says downtown Danville can be very attractive for out-of-town developers.
"They've done their homework. They see a need there. There are bargain values downtown," said Wilkins.
These buildings are often less expensive to buy and fix up than those in bigger cities. And the tenants get all of the benefits of the River District now and when construction finishes.
"They are offering something that has never been available," said Stilwell.
Stilwell predicts in just a few more years she will have hundreds of new neighbors joining her in the River District.