The Pope Enterprises building, located at 8460 Courthouse Square in downtown Douglasville, sold recently. Long-time owner and namesake Bob Pope let go of the building earlier this year.
The four-story commercial building offers just over 11,400 square feet of rentable space that averages out to about 3,000-square-feet per floor, said Pope.
Pope, who spoke by phone, said he bought the Courthouse Square building in an auction around 1999 for just under $400,000. At four stories it is the tallest building in downtown, Pope said.
“I spent another $50,000 on a central air system, which is still in use today,” he said.
Pope said that Douglasville’s population in those days was around 20,000.
Originally built in 1978, Pope sold the building in March of this year to attorney Philip Johns for about $400,000 (minus agent fees) and Johns then sold it to Homer Danley for an undisclosed amount. Current owner Homer Danley was Douglasville’s first black councilman in the 1970s.
Back in the day Pope was a bank president and known as a power player in town. The building was home to the Peach State Bank, established by Frank Cunningham and Bruce Hudson, he said.
When Pope came to Douglasville he bought the former Commercial Bank on Church Street. The Commercial Bank, which had branches across the county, was later bought by Regions Bank. The design plans for the big bank building on Church Street were drawn up by Pope together with his wife, he said.
“By the mid-1990s, Douglas County government was located in seven different buildings in downtown Douglasville, leading county officials to seek voter approval for funding a new county government complex,” according to information available online at www.courthouses.co/douglas county.
Before moving to their new digs at 8700 Hospital Drive, the Douglas Board of Commissioners would hold their meetings at the 8460 Courthouse Square building, Pope said.
The third floor included a restaurant in the 1990s and the S.H.A.R.E. House Family Violence Crisis Center with the Salvation Army have remained a tenant in the building, he said.
Former state representative Bill Hembree had his Nationwide Insurance agency in the Pope building for several years, but relocated his offices in January of this year to Campbellton Street.
Pope said he had been looking to sell the building for around $1 million in 2008, but the economy wasn’t helping that happen, and about a year ago another deal for about $500,000 fell through.
Earlier this year Pope decided to take the offer from Johns. Sales took place from Pope to Phillips to Danley on the last day of March.
A request by phone to Homer Danley for comment on the sale and plans for the building was not returned.