Another warehouse project taking shape in Scott’s Addition

A former flower wholesale warehouse is being converted to apartments. Photos by Katie Demeria.

A former flower wholesale warehouse is being converted to apartments. Photos by Katie Demeria.

Work on the latest flock of Scott’s Addition apartments is underway.

Baltimore-based Sieck Floral Group is renovating 3210 W. Leigh St., its former wholesale distribution warehouse, into the 30-unit, $3.5 million Osprey Lofts.

Construction began in April and is led by Thalhimer Realty Partners, the development arm of local real estate firm Cushman & Wakefield | Thalhimer. Matt Raggi of TRP said the company is acting as a third-party developer on the project.

Sieck Floral purchased the 24,000-square-foot property in 2000 for $625,000 and had it rezoned for apartments last year. Jeffrey Geiger, an attorney with Hirschler Fleischer, represented the owners in that process.

“(Sieck Floral’s) business needs have evolved and changed, and they were not using it for their wholesale floral distribution, but they didn’t want to leave the neighborhood,” Geiger said. “They decided instead to reinvest in the community and contribute to the evolution of Scott’s Addition. They saw the evolution into a vibrant mixed-use community and wanted to be part of that.”

Nearby, another industrial property at 3200 W. Clay St. is also being renovated.

Nearby, another industrial property at 3200 W. Clay St. is also being renovated.

Plans call for an even mixture of one- and two-bedroom units, with one-bedroom units averaging about 600 square feet and two-bedrooms coming in closer to 900 square feet.

Osprey Lofts – named after an osprey that had built a nest on the building’s chimney several years ago, Raggi said – should be ready for residents by the end of this year and pre-leasing will start sometime in October.

MGT Construction, also an arm of Thalhimer, is the general contractor, and Walter Parks is the architect on the project. Xenith Bank provided the financing.

Geiger said the finished product will retain the industrial, warehouse feel that has been popular in Scott’s Addition.

“Richmond saw a success of the conversion of old warehouses in Shockoe Bottom, and Scott’s Addition provides another unique opportunity to provide similar types of residences,” Geiger said. “It’s good for the city to see this rejuvenation.”

Osprey Lofts will not have many amenities on its own site, but Raggi said its residents will be able to use some of the amenities offered across the street at 3200 W. Clay St., a 90-unit, $14 million conversion project currently underway by TRP.

Work on that rehab began last December and involves converting the 116,000-square-foot former Richmond Fixture Co. building. Construction should wrap up by the beginning of next year.

Like the Osprey Lofts, the units are set to be split evenly between one-bedroom units of about 700 square feet and 1,050-square-foot two-bedroom units. Amenities include a rooftop pool and a fitness center.

MGT Construction and Walter Parks have also teamed up on the Richmond Fixture project, and Union Bank & Trust is the lender.

Scott’s Addition has been flooded with new projects in recent years, including Spy Rock Real Estate’s Preserve at Scott’s Addition and the Symbol Mattress Co. redevelopment. Yoga studios, gyms and big restaurant names have also set their sights on the neighborhood.

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Kevin Smith
Kevin Smith

The difference between Shockoe Bottom is that it was an abandoned husk of a neighborhood. Scotts Addition was already a vibrant community before the land grab began and cookie-cutter apartment buildings have displaced precisely the sort of industrial businesses that are have been the raison ďêtre of the neighborhood since its inception in the 1920s. The loss of space for people with a lot of craftsmanship have been displaced by shoddy residential space that can’t be returned to original purpose, and the city is worse for it. The diversity of the place is turning into something like an urban bunker… Read more »