Before the Grandview Heights Planning Commission voted July 17 to approve Nationwide Realty Investors' plan to construct mixed-use buildings as part of the Grandview Yard project, NRI President and Chief Operating Officer Brian Ellis presented a review of the progress and plans for the development.
"We're making good progress toward our overall vision and goals for Grandview Yard," Ellis said.
"It never goes fast enough," he added, but said about 729,000 square feet of development has taken place in the project area over the last 21/2 years.
Retail remains the focus for the development on the north side of Third Avenue, Ellis said.
The projected opening of a new Giant Eagle store has been pushed back to the middle of next year, because Giant Eagle has decided to "slow down a bit to go through a redesign and upgrade" of its plans for the outlet, he said.
The Giant Eagle project is helping to create interest from retail businesses who want to be located near the new grocery store, Ellis said.
Wright-Patt Credit Union, which is headquartered near Dayton, "is looking to make a splash" in the Columbus market and will open a branch on Third Avenue, he said.
A number of restaurants have expressed interest in coming to Third Avenue, and some health-care uses also are likely for the north side of Third, Ellis said.
"We have some soft 'handshake' commitments," he said. "The retail market is challenging, but we are making headway."
On the south side of Third, HealthSouth, an Alabama-based operator of rehabilitation hospitals, has closed on the property at Northwest and Goodale boulevards and plans to build a 42-bed facility on the site.
They are now "working on their own business issues," Ellis said. "We hope they will get rolling soon," but no groundbreaking date has been set.
NRI also is working on putting together the next phase of the Yard, which would be similar to the first phase, he said.
"We hope to identify an anchor office tenant to kick off the office development," Ellis said. "We are in negotiations with an anchor tenant."
The developer also has a soft commitment from a large restaurant that would serve as an anchor for the site, which is expected to include a multi-tenant office building, he said.
"We hope we'll be back in front of you yet this year" with plans for the office development, Ellis told the commission.
The first phase of the Yard includes the Grandview Yard Apartments.
All 154 units in the Grandview Yard apartment project are leased, Ellis said. Even the model unit has been leased.
The Hyatt Place Hotel "is performing very well" and about 15,000 square feet of office space is still available in the first-phase office building, he said.
The planning commission gave its approval July 17 to a request from NRI for a certificate of appropriateness review and a plan for the next phase of the Grandview Yard Apartments project.
The developer will construct a four-story building with three interconnected components on a 3.2-acre site that fronts the extension of Yard Street between Burr Avenue on the south and Williams Avenue on the north.
The ground floor will contain commerce space and there will be 120 apartments on the upper floors.
There will be 78 one-bedroom apartments and 42 two-bedroom units ranging from around 700 to more than 1,000 square feet.
The development will include a 177-space parking lot for office employees and apartment residents, Ellis said. Visitor parking will be on the street.