Arlington Gateway: Demolition expected to start Feb. 18 for Upper Arlington project

Nate Ellis
ThisWeek group
Demolition is expected to start Feb. 18 on the Arlington Gateway project, 1325-97 W. Lane Ave. and 2376 North Star Road. The will yield 225 luxury apartments, 139,000 square feet of office space, 27,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space and an 866-space parking garage. Frank Kass, Continental Real Estate Cos. CEO, said "the project should be completed by the fourth quarter of 2023.”

After several delays, demolition work in advance of the construction of the 11-story Arlington Gateway on Lane Avenue is expected to begin next month. 

Fencing is around the properties at 1325-97 W. Lane Ave. and 2376 North Star Road in preparation of cleaning inside those buildings that Continental Real Estate Cos. CEO Frank Kass said was scheduled to begin Jan. 18. 

That work, Kass said, would ensure the buildings don’t present environmental dangers when demolition starts Feb. 18. He said “deep foundation work” is scheduled to begin March 18. 

“We closed on the properties in December, and we have to clean up any interior environmental issues before we tear down the buildings,” Kass said. “These are minor issues, and they’re being remediated."

Kass heads a development group planning to build Arlington Gateway on the site of several former businesses, including Darron's Contemporary Furniture, Easy Living Deli, Learning Express Toys, Angel's Touch Asian Massage and Dibela Hair & Nails. 

The project, which Kass and Upper Arlington officials have hailed as a landmark development for the city, will yield 225 luxury apartments, 139,000 square feet of office space and 27,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space. It also includes plans for a seven-story, 866-space parking garage. 

The project was approved by City Council in August 2018. 

Initially, Kass planned to begin construction in 2019 and complete the project in 2021. However, the project was delayed while traffic-access issues were addressed in addition to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Kass said Jan. 8 he hopes construction on the parking garage can begin in May. 

“By the fourth quarter of this year, construction on the office buildings above would start,” he said. “The project should be completed by the fourth quarter of 2023.” 

Steve Schoeny, Upper Arlington city manager, said he’s eager for construction to start. 

“The majority of the land upon which this project will sit was annexed into Upper Arlington in 2005 specifically for the purpose of expanding the city’s commercial tax base and in the hopes that a notable mixed-use project would transpire at some point in the future,” Schoeny said. “The Arlington Gateway project represents a rare opportunity ... and a significant economic development accomplishment for the city. 

“The project meets numerous (city) master-plan objectives, such as the enhancement of income tax revenue, the expansion of Class A office space and the attraction of new corporate citizens to the city.” 

Kass declined to name tenants who’ve signed leases or are in discussions to be part of the Gateway.   

Schoeny said due to the project’s location in a “vibrant Lane Avenue commercial district” that has direct access to Ohio State University’s West Campus and state Route 315, city officials anticipate the Gateway will be “filled by high-quality, mid- to -large (size) office uses.” 

“The developer has been in conversations with multiple potential tenants that have expressed interest in the building,” he said. “Current revenue projections indicate that the city will benefit by approximately $500,000 per year in income tax generated from this site, which would be expected to increase over time.” 

Kass said the project is called the Arlington Gateway because it will be a grand “entry to Upper Arlington and the capstone to that entire Lane Avenue entryway to the city.” 

“It’s important to the city and it’s important to us,” Kass said. “It’s been a heck of a process getting it done, but the city of Upper Arlington has been great to work with. 

“It’s going to be a centerpiece for Upper Arlington,” he said. “It’s a $100-plus-million project. There’s not a lot of those going on right now.” 

nellis@thisweeknews.com 

@ThisWeekNate