Almost two decades after developers first targeted the site, construction has begun to convert a former Grandview Heights-area landfill into a 56-acre development featuring offices, shops, restaurants, apartments, a senior center and a hotel.
Work started earlier this month on an office building and two apartment buildings -- the first structures in the long-awaited Grandview Crossing development on a plot of land that straddles the Grandview/Columbus border on the north side of Dublin Road, east of Grandview Avenue.
Developers have proposed building there since at least 2003 but were stymied by pollution, which has been removed.
Wagenbrenner Development is looking to make up for lost time. The company plans to start construction this year on 16 of the 26 buildings that would make up the $300 million project.
"It's been a long time coming, but we're getting a lot of things going now," said Joel Lilly, vice president of development with Wagenbrenner. "It's a great site; it just took a while to get there."
When finished, Grandview Crossing is expected to include six retail and restaurant buildings along Dublin Road and Grandview Avenue; a three-building senior center; a hotel; two large office buildings; nine residential buildings; a parking garage; a park; and four buildings whose uses haven't been identified yet.
Only about 16 acres of the development is in Grandview.
Work has begun on a 125,000-square-foot, 4-story office building and the first apartment buildings, which will include 310 of an expected 1,250 apartments.
This summer, work is set to begin on a Marriott Residence Inn, the senior center, a medical office building on Grandview Avenue, two retail/restaurant buildings on Dublin Road and a 1,350-space parking garage wrapped with apartments.
"We're trying to escalate the project after delays getting it started," said Mark Wagenbrenner, president of Wagenbrenner Development.
No tenants have been secured for the office building, but Wagenbrenner and Lilly are optimistic.
"We like the demand we're seeing," Wagenbrenner said. "We're really excited about the interest."
Wagenbrenner started working on the site almost a decade ago and received a boost in 2012 when the project received a $3 million grant to clean up the former landfill. Since then, the project has evolved and grown.
Wagenbrenner wasn't the first to tackle the site. Cincinnati-based Bear Creek Capital proposed developing the property as early as 2003.
With the project underway, the end already is in sight.
"We're hoping to have people living and working there by May or June of 2021," Lilly said. "We expect to be off the site by 2024 or 2025."