With new owners in place, an idle slice of Glen Allen land once slated for a Ukrop’s grocery store is finally ready to be developed.
New owners finalized their purchase last week of the 15-acre parcel at 5400 Wyndham Forest Drive, near the intersection of Nuckols Road and Twin Hickory roads. The $8.1 million deal paves the way for a 107,000-square-foot grocery anchored shopping center to be known as NuckolsPlace.
Work on the shopping center is likely to begin next month.
The property’s new ownership group is a partnership between Maryland-based Virginia Financial Investors (VFI), an affiliate of Maryland Financial Investors (MFI), and the Peterson Cos., a Northern Virginia developer.
They purchased the land from Ukrop’s Super Markets Inc., which had held the parcel since 2003 and did most of the site work for a grocery store that never came to fruition before the chain was sold to the parent of Martin’s. Jim Gresock and Nathan Shor of S.L. Nusbaum Realty represented the sellers.
“The Ukrops were going to build a grocery store there and then put that on pause, so (the land has) been on the market for probably about three years,” Shor said. “With the recession, there wasn’t much going on, so there wasn’t much activity.”
VFI and the Peterson Cos. have had the property under contract since last year. During that time, the new owners went through the planning process to get approval for construction on the center. Plans call for a 76,000-square-foot grocery store, though it is not yet clear what grocer may settle into the space.
The plans also include two 10,000-square-foot retail spaces and three smaller outparcel buildings.
“It’s an attractive site with on-site improvements already completed,” Shor said, adding that those improvements may have attracted the new owners to the area.
The deal marks the Peterson Cos.’ first project in the Richmond market. The company’s website shows that it has not ventured far from the Washington, D.C., area since its founding in the early 1970’s. A representative with the company did not return requests for comment.
MFI is a commercial property management company that boasts a portfolio of more than 3 million square feet of retail, office and industrial space along the East Coast. The company declined to comment on NuckolsPlace.
VFI also owns the Fresh Market-anchored Carytown Place at 10 N. Nansemond St.
The grocer that does eventually set up shop in NuckolsPlace will be entering a highly competitive Richmond grocery market that has seen a surge of activity over the last year. Wegmans, Walmart Neighborhood Market and Whole Foods have all rolled expansion plans during that time, and the market has also seen a recent influx of stores from German grocers Aldi and Lidl.
Brokers Connie Jordan Nielsen and Alicia Farrell of Cushman & Wakefield | Thalhimer will handle leasing for NuckolsPlace.