12-story tower, Ownby-area mixed-use projects get go-ahead from planning

The commission has endorsed a plan for a 12-story residential tower at 1600 W. Broad St. (Submitted file renderings)

Two notable developments in Richmond are closer to getting a green light from the city.

A mixed-use project surrounding Hardywood Park Craft Brewery near the intersection of Ownby Lane and Overbrook Road received a recommendation for approval on Tuesday from the Planning Commission.

Also getting approval was a plan for a 12-story residential tower at 1600 W. Broad St.

The commission recommended approval for the proposed rezoning at 2408 and 2413 Ownby Lane, and 1601 and 1611 Overbrook Road, from M-2 Heavy Industrial to B-5 Central Business District, which allows for mixed-use projects.

Hardywood’s location at 2408 Ownby Lane. (BizSense file photo)

The 2408 Ownby Lane property houses Hardywood’s original home, which was sold earlier this month for $1.3 million to an entity tied to Spy Rock Real Estate Group. The brewery is planning a renovation of its next-door facility at 2410 Ownby Lane to make way for the planned development. Across the street, 2413 Ownby Lane is owned and occupied by Boxwood Partners, while the Overbrook parcels house an industrial business park.

The rezoning requests were on the commission’s consent agenda, which contains ordinances considered noncontroversial and routine. However, details of the project remain scant.

Spy Rock and fellow local developer Crescent Preservation & Development Co. filed for the rezonings, but neither firm made a presentation to the commission. Neither firm has commented on the plans since BizSense first reported them last month.

Meanwhile, the details around the 12-story tower planned for the intersection of West Broad and North Lombardy streets are much clearer.

The Opus Group, a Minnesota-based developer, filed plans for a 240,000-square-foot, 168-unit residential tower with retail space on the ground floor to replace the existing Sunoco gas station. The city’s new TOD-1 Transit Oriented Development zoning district helped motivate Opus to get working on the tall building near the GRTC Pulse route.

“We need to have towers,” said Vik Murthy, a member of the Planning Commission, after hours of discussion surrounding Opus at Richmond. “We’re finally getting height (along the Pulse corridor).”

Opus’ Dean Newins and Ben Angelo were joined by their local attorney, Mark Kronenthal of Roth Jackson, at Tuesday’s meeting.

The projects now head to City Council, which is scheduled to vote on both matters at its Feb. 24 meeting. Both the Opus at Richmond and Hardywood matters are listed on Council’s consent agenda.

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