Chesterfield County’s long-range plan to transform the aging Rockwood retail corridor is about to get a kick-off from a Reston-based builder with a busy Richmond-area pipeline.
Stanley Martin Homes wants to build 322 condominiums and townhomes on a 25-acre site that encompasses the bulk of the Rockwood Square shopping center in addition to Rockwood Golf Park.
The acreage, which is located near the intersection of Hull Street and Courthouse roads, is under contract to Stanley Martin.
The rezoning and conditional-use application needed to set the stage for the development is scheduled to be considered by the Planning Commission today.
The project would appear to be the first formal redevelopment proposal within the Rockwood Special Focus Area plan, which county supervisors approved in April 2021. The plan is a land-use guide for more than 600 acres focused on development of Rockwood Square and other nearby shopping centers near Rockwood Park.
Stanley Martin’s application offers two options for development of the site. The first consists of 236 two-over-two condominiums and 86 townhomes, all of which would be for-sale units. Sales prices haven’t been determined.
The two-over-two units would range from 1,500 square feet to 2,500 square feet, and they would have two to three bedrooms. Townhomes would run from 1,500 square feet to 2,000 square feet and have three bedrooms. The units would also have garages.
Option two would be a 590-unit development that would include apartments as well as two-over-twos and townhomes. Jeremy Swink, Stanley Martin’s vice president of land for the region, said the 322-unit development is the preferred option.
“The county staff put together a good plan we could follow and adopt based on our knowledge of the market,” Swink said.
Swink said the company expected to close on the golf park later this year and the retail strip in 2023. He would not say how much Stanley Martin will pay for the land. The assemblage consists of multiple parcels most recently assessed at a combined $4 million, according to online county land records.
The company is represented in the rezoning case by Jeff Geiger of the Hirschler law firm.
The existing buildings on the project site would be demolished to make way for the new development. The project doesn’t include the outparcels at Rockwood Square.
The current owner of Rockwood Square is Maryland-based Area Properties LLC. It bought the center’s main retail strip for $1.9 million in 2012, according to online county records. It bought an additional 1.7-acre parcel within the center in a separate deal that year for $110,000 and another parcel of 2.6 acres for $35,000 in 2019.
Company representative Gary Modjeski said Stanley Martin initiated conversations about a deal for the shopping center property. He said a sale is appealing because it has had trouble leasing the 34,000-square-foot anchor space after Big Lots moved out of the center several years ago.
“Finding it more challenging to lease a large retail footprint these days made us receptive to looking at a change of use. And then we saw the plan come out and said, ‘OK, this is something the county is interested in promoting and helping facilitate,” Modjeski said.
The deal would close only if the proposal is approved by the Board of Supervisors, which will give final consideration of the proposal at a future meeting.
Rockwood Golf Park at 10239 Hull Street Road remains open for business and owned by Si Lee and Mi Lee. The Lees bought the 12-acre facility for $1.3 million in 2015. It features a driving range and mini golf.
Si Lee declined to comment for this article when reached Monday.