A local swim club is preparing to dive into a West End mall.
NOVA Aquatics formally announced Tuesday evening its plans to expand operations with a 50,000-square-foot facility in the former Macy’s South building in Regency Square Mall at 1420 N. Parham Road.
Executive Director Ann McGee said the nonprofit will build a 50-meter pool and two 25-yard pools in the now-empty department store.
The nearly $18 million project will be funded with $3 million from NOVA; $13 million from Regency’s owners, Thalhimer Realty Partners and Rebkee Co.; and with $1.75 million in grant money from Henrico’s Economic Development Authority, which will vote on the funding in May.
McGee said the 50-meter pool will be named for the family of Sherry Sharp, who donated $500,000 to the project.
NOVA has agreed to a long-term lease for the facility, which previously was reported to be up to 30 years.
NOVA, which offers swimming lessons as well as a competitive youth swim team, has been operating at 12207 Gayton Road since 1987.
Since 2013, it has planned to build a new facility adjacent to its Gayton property. But that’s been derailed after it was discovered that mine remnants sat underneath the land.
The Regency expansion will allow NOVA to have more swim lessons, host high school varsity swim meets and offer adult swim opportunities, McGee said. The Gayton location, which has two 25-yard pools, will remain operational.
Plans for the Regency site also call for locker rooms, a swim shop, coach’s office, lobby and upper mezzanine.
The mall is co-owned by Thalhimer and Rebkee, which purchased it for $13 million in 2015. The former Macy’s space had been tapped as a possible space for Regal Cinemas, but that deal never materialized.
NOVA and Regency Square officials presented their plans for the project to Henrico’s Board of Supervisors and county manager John Vithoulkas at the site Tuesday night. Plans show that Baskervill is the project’s architect and Capstone Contracting Co. is the general contractor.
NOVA aims to have the pools operational in the first quarter of 2021.
Regency Square has welcomed a handful of new tenants in recent months, including Your CBD Store, sneaker shop Dynasty Kickz, clothing and accessories shop Universal Threads and apparel store Upstreamers.
A new restaurant, La Cocina Mexican Delicacies, will open at the end of March. Women’s clothing chain Charlotte Russe will close by the end of April as the company goes through bankruptcy.