Dominion files plans for second downtown tower

In this view from Kanawha Plaza, the confirmed new tower sits to the left. The other potential new building is to the right where One James River Plaza currently sits.

With construction of its new office tower well underway, Richmond’s resident utility giant is beginning to cue up a potential sister structure next door.

Dominion Energy last month submitted plans to the city for a 17-story, 911,000-square-foot building to rise on the site of its existing 21-story One James River Plaza building at 701 E. Cary St.

Dominion Energy spokeswoman Daisy Pridgen said in an email that the plan of development for the second tower helps to ready the property for potential construction should the company decide to go through with the project. That could be decided early next year.

The second tower would join the 20-story 600 Canal Place building, a 417-foot Dominion Energy tower that cranes and construction crews are erecting at 600 E. Canal St., where the Richmond Plaza building once stood.

Dominion’s 600 Canal Place is rising quickly downtown.

Dominion announced plans about two years ago to construct a two-tower campus downtown – a move to help consolidate operations and modernize its downtown footprint.

The company said at the time it was considering two options for the One James River Plaza property: gutting the existing 667,000-square-foot building for a full renovation or demolishing it in favor of a new tower once construction on the first was completed.

The planned second tower, dubbed 700 Canal Place, would rise on the nearly 2-acre site and connect to its slightly taller twin tower via a sky bridge over South 7th Street. Both towers would have parking garages with rooftop gardens.

600 Canal Place will have about 1 million square feet of office space and parking, and three amenity floors that include a lobby area, fitness center and meeting center. The third-floor cafeteria will open to an outdoor green rooftop garden over the parking deck.

Richmond-based Hourigan and Chicago-based Clayco are listed as the general contractors for the second tower. They are also overseeing construction on the first tower. Houston-based architecture firm Kendall/Heaton Associates has been selected as the architect of record, and the Timmons Group is the civil engineer.

Dominion employs about 2,500 employees downtown. Pridgen said the company plans to move about 1,200 workers – most of whom work at One James River Plaza – into the first new tower by the second quarter of 2019.

Once it’s been decided when to launch construction on its second tower, Pridgen said Dominion will begin evaluating options for its other properties in the surrounding central business district, including its 20-story tower at 705 E. Main St., three buildings at 120 Tredegar St. and two buildings on Grayland Avenue.

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12 Comments on "Dominion files plans for second downtown tower"

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William Willis
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Love the design, just wish they were taller 25 to 30 stories to maximize their impact on the skyline and with Richmond unable to spread out the only option for more growth is up in that area. I will be fun and interesting to watch them remove the 21 store building. I think that will be the tallest building brought down in Richmond ever.

Ashley Smith
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Yes. A cool building. But this thieving company wants the taxes from their towers to fund a private development, that of a new colliseum.
Isn’t it enough to have a monopoly? Now attempting to strip the City from much needed funds, all for personal gain. We need to wake up.

Bruce Milam
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the coliseum is one of the few components of that 10 city block proposal that projects to earn income, and even that at around 3% per annum, hardly justification to build it privately. I’m not saying its a great proposal to use the taxes from the buildings to help with the debt of a new public complex of buildings but it is hardly “thievery”. At the least, it deserves review.

Michael Dodson
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How can we discuss what is again a private, back room; cloaked in secret deal? And so, wait you say it hardly justifies private development (I can agree with that) but the report the team building the facility is using for its numbers says the redevelopment is projected to bring as many as 21,000 jobs to the city, including 9,300 after construction is complete, according to a VCU Center for Urban and Regional Analysis report. The proposed redevelopment could have a $1.2 billion annual economic impact after construction, the report states. So why would it need public dollars??? It only… Read more »
Bruce Milam
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It is certainly confusing on the face of it, but the proposal is not “secret” or we wouldn’t be discussing it, right? The required work includes a number of decrepit public buildings within that 10 block area that must be removed and then replaced at the expense of the developer and I’m making an assumption that these would not be revenue generators for them. So, with or without a private developer, the City is about to incur a huge cost for those buildings that cannot be avoided. The City will have to pass bonds to replace those buildings. The privately… Read more »
William T Muse
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Let’s be realistic here – until this city green lights a plan to remove the mold & asbestos from our public schools, we shouldn’t even think about incurring hundreds of millions of dollars on a stadium redevelopment plan…

Bruce Milam
Guest
They aren’t exclusive of each other. The public buildings downtown which include the public safety building have to be replaced as well. The current coliseum is draining funds from the city for its maintenance. Even tearing it down will cost multi-millions of dollars. The other public buildings even more millions. The city has to find a way to do that without affecting its bond rating. So far, after nearly a year of soliciting bids, they’ve been presented one proposal. I’m not arguing that the schools shouldn’t be a priority, but that hasn’t been the case in Richmond for a long,… Read more »
William T Muse
Guest
I agree, the City has many outdated buildings that need upgrades or outright replacements – and I’ve lived in Richmond long enough to know this administration isn’t the first to ignore the schools in its development agenda. Richmond is booming right now with more development, tourism, and buzz like never before – but the key to improving (even maintaining) property values & quality of life is good public schools, not coliseums. That said, if only one proposal is offered after a year of soliciting bids, maybe the scope of the project needs to be changed to make the development more… Read more »
David Humphrey
Guest
When looking at the taxes they would utilize to help fund the coliseum project it is important to note they would be using TIF financing, which means they would only be using new tax money generated from the tower site. In other words the only taxes that would be used for that would be new taxes, and not taxes revenue that was already being collected. Existing tax revenue from the properties would not be reduced. Not saying it is definitely a good thing, but something that may be useful and should be closely examined. It has been used all over… Read more »
Eric Huffstutler
Guest

Yes, I say demolish the old building and build the new mirrored one. I am an advocate of historic preservation but a building constructed in 1978 is not exactly “historic” and Richmond has been ultraconservative too long when it comes to new building construction.

William T Muse
Guest

First, I’m very pleased to see Dominion planning to “double down” in Downtown Richmond, as I think the design of the new buildings are rather modern for our skyline. Second, I think its a shame that Dominion wants to see their property taxes go toward a new coliseum instead of our public schools. As the defacto electric monopoly for City residents, they would earn more goodwill by championing investments in education than entertainment.

Levi Luckenbach
Guest
I wish they would develop the new tower on adjacent vacant land/surface parking lots first before destroying an already-existing skyscraper. I think it’s such a waste. They should sell One James River Plaza and use the money to buy one of the surface lots to the west of the new 600 E Canal Tower for their second tower. Virginia cities’ skylines are relatively sad in comparison to much smaller cities throughout the nation, so it wouldn’t hurt to build in addition to, not in place of, the old skyscrapers. And I agree with many people that the building should be… Read more »
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