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The North American Transmission building on North Boulevard sold for $1.29 million. (Kieran McQuilkin)

RICHMOND, Va. — Auto repair shops are becoming a hot commodity along the Boulevard.

One week after the Woody’s Auto Service building on Myers Street was sold for more than $1 million to make way for a AAA location, a local franchise of fellow car care chain Midas purchased the North American Transmission building at 1208-1216 N. Boulevard for $1.29 million.

Midas of Richmond purchased the 15,575-square-foot building in a deal that closed Monday. The seller was the family of Albert and Annabele Chiocca, who owned the building since at least 1999, according to city property records. A recent city assessment valued the 0.37-acre property at $655,000.

The Chiocca family was represented by Read Goode and Cheryle Toy of Divaris Real Estate. Midas was represented by Brian Berkey of Cushman & Wakefield | Thalhimer.

Mark Smith, owner of Midas of Central Virginia, which totals four locations including Midas of Richmond’s two shops, in Short Pump and near Willow Lawn, said he had been eyeing the North American Transmission building for years. The transmission shop had leased the building until it closed last year.

“I’d hunted that specific location for probably three years,” Smith said. “I love the market; I love the fit it has for other stores. I think there’s a great play to be made there.”

Smith said he’ll invest $750,000 into renovating the building, which has served as an auto repair garage since it was built in 1927, save for a stint as a dry cleaning facility in the ‘40s.

Smith said the renovations will stay within requirements for historic tax credits. It will renovate the interior, which features skylights, and the exterior, notable for its billboard signage on the roof.

The shop will include spaces for other organizations Midas of Richmond works with, such as Virginia Blood Service and FeedMore. Smith is working with Susan Orange and Ray Trevillian of Baskervill on designs. Capstone Contracting Co. is the general contractor.

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