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Veridian owner plans expansion downtown

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The owner of Veridian Events LLC plans to expand the downtown venue after purchasing an adjacent building.

Through SIAV LLC, Darren Smith is renovating the vacant 214 W. McDaniel St. building into a center with a banquet hall, rooftop bar and reception area, basement “speakeasy” bar and five overnight hotel rooms for event guests. Smith said a fire escape on the back side of The Veridian at 309 South Ave. would allow guests entry onto the roof.

“The Veridian has been in business for eight years now, and we’ve always been looking to expand,” he said.

The new space — a blue-painted building between the Hearts of Fire Tattoo parlor and Traders Printing Co. — also will allow The Veridian to book smaller parties than at the main building on South Avenue. Smith said at the current Veridian space, the business can host 300 people on the second floor and 150 on the first floor.

“We were losing a lot of people because our banquet hall is so big,” he said, noting 50-person events would be possible with the new space.

Pending building permit reviews with the city of Springfield, Smith said renovation work should begin in the first quarter and wrap up by year’s end. Smith said he hired Sapp Design Associates Architects PC as the interior and exterior architect for the project, with CJD Engineering LLC on for mechanical, electrical and plumbing, and Pinnacle Design Consultants LLC performing structural engineering work. Smith’s other company, Sensory Integration Inc. — which works out of the first floor and basement of The Veridian — is conducting heavy engineering work for the renovation.

Smith estimated the project cost at roughly $2 million.

The business owner bought the McDaniel Street building a year ago after it had been vacant for a year, he said. It formerly housed a bar known as The Abyss, among other uses.

Smith also confirmed he’s part of a team working on the 42,000-square-foot Newberry building across the street on McDaniel. However, he said it’s “too early to comment on this project.” The Greene County assessor’s website lists the owner as Newberry Building LLC and the owner’s address as 309 South Ave., the same as The Veridian.

Smith’s plans were first reported by Biz 417.

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