PEABODY — New tenants, two new financial firms and a country music joint plan to move into the O’Shea building at the corner of Foster and Main streets in Peabody Square.
The building has undergone a total makeover, including the addition of outside accent lighting, since Pasquale “Pat” Todisco bought the building at auction for $1.47 million in the summer of 2017. The purchase ended for good the previous owner’s hopes that it could be turned into a boutique hotel.
“My son and I are very excited to finally see everything that we’ve dreamed about coming to fruition downtown in Peabody Square,” said Todisco, who has estimated renovation costs at about $4 million. “We are looking forward to continuing bringing new things down to Peabody center and that we are still 100 percent committed to do whatever is necessary to continue to grow down in Peabody Square.”
Todisco and his son, Steven, have spent the last 19 months turning the three-story brick building in the heart of downtown into a mix of housing and commercial space. There are now 20 apartments on the top two floors and commercial tenants on the ground floor. Salem Five Bank and the financial services firm Edward Jones plan to lease space on the first floor.
Nine out of 20 apartments are leased, Pat Todisco said, with tenants coming from New York, Connecticut and Florida and working in the biotech industry or teaching music. Rents range from $1,100 to $2,300. The building, which comes with some affordable units, has some small studio apartments, three large one-bedroom units and three huge lofts. One of the apartments is handicapped ADA compliant.
On the corner, in the former China Corner restaurant space, there are plans for a country-themed eatery called Stanzy’s Country Ranch. The space features two garage doors that open onto Peabody Square.
The establishment’s Facebook page gave few hints about its offerings, except for “southern grub,” country karaoke, more than 100 whiskeys and Sunday country brunch.
Stanzy’s owners are scheduled to go before the Licensing Board with an application for an all-alcoholic beverages license in a public hearing in City Hall on Aug. 12. The license they are seeking was one of those created by special legislation in 2017 for an establishment in the downtown area.
Owner Rob Stanziani, of Peabody, declined further comment on the restaurant’s concept until after the hearing.
The space where Stanzy’s plans to locate has been the subject of speculation for some time.
It had been intended as the new home of Brodie’s Pub, which sits about a half block away at 10½ Lowell St. That property has been purchased by the city, which intends to build a park there at some point in the future.
After a lease was signed in January 2018, Brodie’s never moved into the space, so Todisco brought a breach of contract lawsuit in Superior Court against MJ Votto LLC, which does business as Brodie’s Pub, and its owner Michael J. Votto.
Calls to attorneys for both sides were not returned as of Friday afternoon. A call to Brodie’s and a message was sent to Votto Properties via Facebook seeking comment but was not answered as of deadline Friday.
“We won the lawsuit,” said Todisco, adding that “winning the lawsuit doesn’t amount to anything unless you are awarded something.”
Staff writer Julie Manganis contributed to this report.
Staff writer Ethan Forman can be reached at 978-338-2673, by email at email@example.com or on Twitter at @TannerSalemNews.