City Center contenders present competing visions for Coliseum-area redevelopment

CityCenter RCDC

A rendering from Richmond Community Development Partners’ proposal shows new structures around the Blues Armory building. (City documents)

A clearer picture has emerged of the four development teams that are vying for Richmond’s City Center project – as well as their visions for the mixed-use redevelopment that would replace the Richmond Coliseum.

The city on Friday released one-pagers from each of the remaining contenders in the project’s solicitation process. The single-page summaries provide a glimpse of their respective plans for the project, as well as a full list of their team rosters.

The documents were included in the teams’ responses to a formal request for offers that were due April 20. The four finalists have since been interviewed in-person by the project’s evaluation panel, and negotiations with one or more of the teams are to follow, leading up to a potential selection this summer, according to the solicitation.

Leading the negotiations are the Richmond Economic Development Authority and the Greater Richmond Convention Center Authority, which issued the joint solicitation in November for the 9-acre project that’s to be anchored by a new convention center hotel.

CityCntrPlan1

A conceptual map of the city blocks and properties involved in the city’s City Center plan and their potential uses.

The project involves demolishing the Coliseum, adaptive reuse of the neighboring Blues Armory building, infrastructure improvements, and development of a 500-room hotel to support the convention center. Tourism officials have said for years that a convention center hotel is needed because existing downtown hotels do not have the capacity to serve the convention center to its fullest potential.

Also required with the project is office and retail space, new housing including lower-income units, parking and transit facilities, bicycle and pedestrian improvements, public open space and infrastructure improvements, including reconnections of Sixth and Clay streets through the site.

The one-pagers released Friday include conceptual renderings and site plans, a description of each team’s vision for the site, and a list of team members – including some that were not previously known:

Capstone Development LLC

City Center Capstone Development LLC

Renderings from Capstone Development LLC’s proposal.

Led by Capstone Development, the Maryland-based firm that’s the hotel developer on Richmond’s Diamond District project, the team includes retail developer Edens, based in Washington, D.C., and Ventas, a life sciences-focused real estate investment trust out of Chicago. Capstone is the team’s hotel and residential developer.

Rounding out the team are Atlanta-based architecture firm Cooper Carry, and Richmond-based general contractor W.M. Jordan Co.

Capstone, which focuses on hotel, residential and mixed-use projects, has developed five hotels in D.C. and Maryland, including the Marriott-branded Courtyard Washington Downtown/Convention Center in D.C. Edens’ output includes developments in D.C.’s Union Market District and Fairfax’s Mosaic District.

The team’s one-pager describes its concept for City Center as an “integrated, mixed-use development project” with “hotels” and “lab/office space,” among other components. Renderings show a park and four multistory buildings, including the convention center hotel where the Coliseum is now, and a residential tower northeast of the Blues Armory.

The one-pager adds: “The proposed project features new streets reconnecting the site to the surrounding neighborhoods, and a vibrant, walkable public realm including ample open green spaces.”

City Center Gateway Partners

City Center City Center Gateway Partners

The proposal from City Center Gateway Partners is anchored by a 30-story convention center hotel.

Led locally by Capital Square and Shamin Hotels, the team also includes by D.C.-based housing developer Dantes Partners, North Carolina-based life sciences real estate developer Ancora, and Virginia Beach-based Gold Key | PHR, which is the hotel developer along with Shamin. Capital Square is listed as the team’s local development and capital partner.

Other team members include Gensler (master plan architect); Baskervill (design architect); OJB (park and greenspaces); VHB, F&R, Schnabel, and Clancy & Theys (site and infrastructure); Of Place (placemaking and retail); Storefront for Community Design (community visioning); J&G Workforce (workforce); and Reynolds Community College (education).

Capital Square, based in Henrico, has made moves in recent years into development in Richmond’s Scott’s Addition neighborhood. Dantes focuses on income-based housing and is currently developing Pin Oaks Estates, a 98-unit apartment complex in Petersburg. Goldkey | PHR developed The Cavalier Resort in Virginia Beach and Hilton the Main in Norfolk.

Renderings and a site plan show a 30-story hotel along Fifth Street, a park called “City Center Commons,” a trailhead along Seventh Street for the Fall Line Trail, a performance stage and residential buildings.

The one-pager describes City Center as “a true gateway that creates an active and inclusive community, showcasing Richmond as a vibrant city, full of innovation and culture. New downtown residents, longtime Richmonders, and out-of-towners will enjoy a mix of retail and dining venues, opening onto a world-class urban park.”

It adds: “City Center will be grounded by a Gateway Hotel, filled with convention goers who are eager to experience all the neighborhood has to offer. City Center will be a source of fun, entertainment, and respite, but it will also be a catalyst for employment and career advancement for residents throughout the region. This transformative development will position Richmond for success in the decades to come.”

Lincoln Property Company

City Center Lincoln Property Company

Lincoln Property Company’s submission.

Tied to two companies co-founded by former pro football great Emmitt Smith, the team is led by Lincoln Property Co., a Dallas-based firm that has developed commercial and residential buildings across the country, including the 1030 15th Street and 699 Fourteenth buildings in D.C.

Joining Lincoln are Smith’s companies: E Smith Horizons, a subsidiary of Smith’s E Smith Legacy commercial real estate holding company; and Gold Jacket, a Miami-based development investment firm co-founded by Smith.

Rounding out the team are D.C.-based Legacy Real Estate Development; architecture firm CallisonRTKL, a subsidiary of global design firm Arcadis; and out of Richmond, civil engineering firm Timmons Group and general contractor Hourigan.

Renderings show several multistory buildings, including two that would be connected over Clay Street by a pedestrian bridge with “City Center” signage. The one-pager describes the project as a “dynamic urban hub that combines technological advancement with an approachable hometown atmosphere.”

“It will foster the exchange of ideas, starting from the Convention Center and permeating throughout the city, seamlessly transforming a business lunch into an evening concert,” the description adds. “At its core, City Center is a compact, dense, and mixed-use district, promoting walkability and serving as the central point for both downtown and the entire community.”

Richmond Community Development Partners

City Center Richmond Community Development Partners

Richmond Community Development Partners’ proposal.

The runner-up for the Diamond District, the team is led by Houston-based Machete Group and Richmond development firm Bank Street Advisors, the latter whose local projects include the One Canal apartments in Monroe Ward and the Soda Flats apartments under construction beside The Hofheimer building in Scott’s Addition.

Also leading the team are hotel developer and operator Highgate, Richmond development firm M Companies (historic preservation), housing developer Brinshore Development, and life sciences developer GlenLine.

The team also includes architecture firms Hanbury (master planner, urban design); Marvel and Rockwell Group (hotel architect and interior design); SMBW and KEi (design architects with Hanbury), Moseley (affordable housing), and Waterstreet and Fall Line (landscape architects with Marvel).

Rounding out the team are civil engineering firm VHB, Todd Waldo of diversity consulting firm Hugh Helen LLC, CW Consulting Group (workforce development), BRV (placemaking), Stantec (sustainability), and construction firms Gilbane Building Co., Davis Brothers Construction, Canterbury Enterprises and L.F. Jennings.

The team’s site plan and renderings show a hotel along Fifth Street with a pedestrian bridge to the convention center, a “6th Street market” beside the Blues Armory building, a park at Clay and Seventh streets, and life science buildings across Leigh Street from the VA Bio+Tech Park.

The team’s concept describes City Center as “the cornerstone of our downtown, offering convention center visitors a vibrant destination full of life and energy; creating a platform for scientific advancement at the new Bio Tech Park; a convenient and desirable place to live and socialize for VCU Health doctors, nurses, students, and other health care providers; and a new urban living room, offering live entertainment and graceful public spaces for all of Richmond.”

CityCenter RCDC

A rendering from Richmond Community Development Partners’ proposal shows new structures around the Blues Armory building. (City documents)

A clearer picture has emerged of the four development teams that are vying for Richmond’s City Center project – as well as their visions for the mixed-use redevelopment that would replace the Richmond Coliseum.

The city on Friday released one-pagers from each of the remaining contenders in the project’s solicitation process. The single-page summaries provide a glimpse of their respective plans for the project, as well as a full list of their team rosters.

The documents were included in the teams’ responses to a formal request for offers that were due April 20. The four finalists have since been interviewed in-person by the project’s evaluation panel, and negotiations with one or more of the teams are to follow, leading up to a potential selection this summer, according to the solicitation.

Leading the negotiations are the Richmond Economic Development Authority and the Greater Richmond Convention Center Authority, which issued the joint solicitation in November for the 9-acre project that’s to be anchored by a new convention center hotel.

CityCntrPlan1

A conceptual map of the city blocks and properties involved in the city’s City Center plan and their potential uses.

The project involves demolishing the Coliseum, adaptive reuse of the neighboring Blues Armory building, infrastructure improvements, and development of a 500-room hotel to support the convention center. Tourism officials have said for years that a convention center hotel is needed because existing downtown hotels do not have the capacity to serve the convention center to its fullest potential.

Also required with the project is office and retail space, new housing including lower-income units, parking and transit facilities, bicycle and pedestrian improvements, public open space and infrastructure improvements, including reconnections of Sixth and Clay streets through the site.

The one-pagers released Friday include conceptual renderings and site plans, a description of each team’s vision for the site, and a list of team members – including some that were not previously known:

Capstone Development LLC

City Center Capstone Development LLC

Renderings from Capstone Development LLC’s proposal.

Led by Capstone Development, the Maryland-based firm that’s the hotel developer on Richmond’s Diamond District project, the team includes retail developer Edens, based in Washington, D.C., and Ventas, a life sciences-focused real estate investment trust out of Chicago. Capstone is the team’s hotel and residential developer.

Rounding out the team are Atlanta-based architecture firm Cooper Carry, and Richmond-based general contractor W.M. Jordan Co.

Capstone, which focuses on hotel, residential and mixed-use projects, has developed five hotels in D.C. and Maryland, including the Marriott-branded Courtyard Washington Downtown/Convention Center in D.C. Edens’ output includes developments in D.C.’s Union Market District and Fairfax’s Mosaic District.

The team’s one-pager describes its concept for City Center as an “integrated, mixed-use development project” with “hotels” and “lab/office space,” among other components. Renderings show a park and four multistory buildings, including the convention center hotel where the Coliseum is now, and a residential tower northeast of the Blues Armory.

The one-pager adds: “The proposed project features new streets reconnecting the site to the surrounding neighborhoods, and a vibrant, walkable public realm including ample open green spaces.”

City Center Gateway Partners

City Center City Center Gateway Partners

The proposal from City Center Gateway Partners is anchored by a 30-story convention center hotel.

Led locally by Capital Square and Shamin Hotels, the team also includes by D.C.-based housing developer Dantes Partners, North Carolina-based life sciences real estate developer Ancora, and Virginia Beach-based Gold Key | PHR, which is the hotel developer along with Shamin. Capital Square is listed as the team’s local development and capital partner.

Other team members include Gensler (master plan architect); Baskervill (design architect); OJB (park and greenspaces); VHB, F&R, Schnabel, and Clancy & Theys (site and infrastructure); Of Place (placemaking and retail); Storefront for Community Design (community visioning); J&G Workforce (workforce); and Reynolds Community College (education).

Capital Square, based in Henrico, has made moves in recent years into development in Richmond’s Scott’s Addition neighborhood. Dantes focuses on income-based housing and is currently developing Pin Oaks Estates, a 98-unit apartment complex in Petersburg. Goldkey | PHR developed The Cavalier Resort in Virginia Beach and Hilton the Main in Norfolk.

Renderings and a site plan show a 30-story hotel along Fifth Street, a park called “City Center Commons,” a trailhead along Seventh Street for the Fall Line Trail, a performance stage and residential buildings.

The one-pager describes City Center as “a true gateway that creates an active and inclusive community, showcasing Richmond as a vibrant city, full of innovation and culture. New downtown residents, longtime Richmonders, and out-of-towners will enjoy a mix of retail and dining venues, opening onto a world-class urban park.”

It adds: “City Center will be grounded by a Gateway Hotel, filled with convention goers who are eager to experience all the neighborhood has to offer. City Center will be a source of fun, entertainment, and respite, but it will also be a catalyst for employment and career advancement for residents throughout the region. This transformative development will position Richmond for success in the decades to come.”

Lincoln Property Company

City Center Lincoln Property Company

Lincoln Property Company’s submission.

Tied to two companies co-founded by former pro football great Emmitt Smith, the team is led by Lincoln Property Co., a Dallas-based firm that has developed commercial and residential buildings across the country, including the 1030 15th Street and 699 Fourteenth buildings in D.C.

Joining Lincoln are Smith’s companies: E Smith Horizons, a subsidiary of Smith’s E Smith Legacy commercial real estate holding company; and Gold Jacket, a Miami-based development investment firm co-founded by Smith.

Rounding out the team are D.C.-based Legacy Real Estate Development; architecture firm CallisonRTKL, a subsidiary of global design firm Arcadis; and out of Richmond, civil engineering firm Timmons Group and general contractor Hourigan.

Renderings show several multistory buildings, including two that would be connected over Clay Street by a pedestrian bridge with “City Center” signage. The one-pager describes the project as a “dynamic urban hub that combines technological advancement with an approachable hometown atmosphere.”

“It will foster the exchange of ideas, starting from the Convention Center and permeating throughout the city, seamlessly transforming a business lunch into an evening concert,” the description adds. “At its core, City Center is a compact, dense, and mixed-use district, promoting walkability and serving as the central point for both downtown and the entire community.”

Richmond Community Development Partners

City Center Richmond Community Development Partners

Richmond Community Development Partners’ proposal.

The runner-up for the Diamond District, the team is led by Houston-based Machete Group and Richmond development firm Bank Street Advisors, the latter whose local projects include the One Canal apartments in Monroe Ward and the Soda Flats apartments under construction beside The Hofheimer building in Scott’s Addition.

Also leading the team are hotel developer and operator Highgate, Richmond development firm M Companies (historic preservation), housing developer Brinshore Development, and life sciences developer GlenLine.

The team also includes architecture firms Hanbury (master planner, urban design); Marvel and Rockwell Group (hotel architect and interior design); SMBW and KEi (design architects with Hanbury), Moseley (affordable housing), and Waterstreet and Fall Line (landscape architects with Marvel).

Rounding out the team are civil engineering firm VHB, Todd Waldo of diversity consulting firm Hugh Helen LLC, CW Consulting Group (workforce development), BRV (placemaking), Stantec (sustainability), and construction firms Gilbane Building Co., Davis Brothers Construction, Canterbury Enterprises and L.F. Jennings.

The team’s site plan and renderings show a hotel along Fifth Street with a pedestrian bridge to the convention center, a “6th Street market” beside the Blues Armory building, a park at Clay and Seventh streets, and life science buildings across Leigh Street from the VA Bio+Tech Park.

The team’s concept describes City Center as “the cornerstone of our downtown, offering convention center visitors a vibrant destination full of life and energy; creating a platform for scientific advancement at the new Bio Tech Park; a convenient and desirable place to live and socialize for VCU Health doctors, nurses, students, and other health care providers; and a new urban living room, offering live entertainment and graceful public spaces for all of Richmond.”

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Bruce Milam
Bruce Milam
11 months ago

This one could move along faster than The Diamond since there’s no huge public obstacle like a ballpark to be built. As well as it’s a much smaller footprint. It appears that there are several quality players bidding for the opportunity. I look forward to seeing that rusty tin can of a coliseum removed.

David Humphrey
David Humphrey
11 months ago
Reply to  Bruce Milam

I too hope it moves quickly, but exact agreement on demolition of the Coliseum could take some time to hash out. That is not a small bill or as simple of a project as it may seem so that could get complicated and delay things.

Scott Burger
Scott Burger
11 months ago

It’s all about the neoliberal churn of corporate welfare these days. It is incredibly wasteful to demolish the Richmond Coliseum instead of reopening it or repurposing it. From an economic and environmental standpoint, this is horrible. Keep in mind, while the City takes bids on demolishing the coliseum, it is essentially giving millions to the private riverfront amphitheater proposal, and raising the cost of utilities (aka basic needs) for citizens. But this is the City of Richmond and it’s sold- out leadership, and why a lot of people choose to live in Henrico and say they live in Richmond.

David Humphrey
David Humphrey
11 months ago
Reply to  Scott Burger

Simple economics. It would take way more money to reopen or repurpose the Coliseum than it would to pay for the amphitheater in its entirety (which the City is not doing).

Michael Morgan-Dodson
Michael Morgan-Dodson
11 months ago
Reply to  David Humphrey

No the City is just giving back all of the revenue from the amphitheater back the developer/management firm. Just like the City now plans to due for the Diamond District (minus the school portion of the sales tax) so the shiny new developments will provide NO direct benefits to the tax rolls and instead claim ancillary tax revenue increases that you know just never seem to materialize in these deals. How much does someone want to bet me that in the final deal a TIF will be required giving back all revenue from the project to either support the convention… Read more »

Jeff Stein
Jeff Stein
11 months ago

I agree with you. Zero sum tax revenues but most likely a net negative for city coffers. The city will also be funding the 500-room hotel in some fashion that will never make money — no private developer would ever build this size hotel without significant subsidy. Add this to the fact that the convention center already loses a significant amount of money — an accelerated loss for several years while being shuttered during COVID. Tourism officials, who are not hotel developers, will argue the hotel and center is needed for “tourism revenues” — yet they will never back this… Read more »

Last edited 11 months ago by Jeff Stein
Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
11 months ago
Reply to  Jeff Stein

Interesting. Do you have a link?

I had my doubts about a convention center at the time, but it seemed a better idea than in some places that were doing one — problem is that there are too many darn CCs!!!

Lucas de Block
Lucas de Block
9 months ago

thats just simply not true.

Justin Ranson
Justin Ranson
11 months ago
Reply to  Scott Burger

With the cost of modernizing and making it ADA compliant and asbestos-free, it’s not worth it – Especially since Green City will be up and running in a couple of years. A polished coliseum isn’t going to compete with that facility. Lipstick on a pig, and all that.

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
11 months ago
Reply to  Justin Ranson

Well, maybe we shouldn’t HAVE a coliseum then.

Nobody seems to pick up on my simple idea of having the city SELL THE LAND to the highest bidder and letting that bidder decide what is the best use for it…. then, the city makes money up front AND on tax revenue!! But many cities like Richmond seem to want to micromanage things into the ground…

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
11 months ago
Reply to  Scott Burger

“Neolib” LOL

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
11 months ago
Reply to  Scott Burger

Oh, snap you are getting more downvotes than Ms. Woodhull!! I feel small.

Anyway, I understand why you are downvoted here and I just downvoted you too — that building is not worth the cost to rebuild, the fact that you bring up environmental concerns about EVERY site prove that you are just anti-building everywhere.

Remember that guy who wanted to turn the thing into a Sunken Ampitheatre?? That may be “creative” but it’s not brilliant. Might work if he wanted to create an urban pond of something…

Darn Neolibs, doing stuff!!!

Brian Glass
Brian Glass
11 months ago

Sorry Scott, but I have to disagree. The Coliseum is functionally obsolete, and asbestos laden. It’s in far worse shape than the Diamond. The cost to save it would far outweigh the cost of replacing it with a better product, that would produce more tax revenue.

Bruce Milam
Bruce Milam
11 months ago
Reply to  Brian Glass

Brian nails it. That old rust bucket has to go! The issue with these huge arenas is that the market for these size venues constantly morphs. The new one to be built in Green City will be obsolete long, long before it’s paid off, as we’ve witnessed in Charlotte and other large markets. Financing them with public dollars for private profit is a bad bet. That’s the same issue with the new Diamond ball park. It’s too big of an investment for Double A team revenues. That level of talent cannot earn the ticket prices of a major league attraction.… Read more »

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
11 months ago
Reply to  Bruce Milam

Thank you for the sense.

Scott Brown
Scott Brown
11 months ago

The Coliseum was outdated long before it was closed. There should have been a plan to replace it prior to it being closed, but planning ahead has never been a strong suit of the City of Richmond. Henrico will have it’s own arena and both Henrico and Chesterfield are going all in on youth sporting events. What does the city have? A minor league baseball team and a minor league soccer team, both play in currently outdated buildings. I will not be suprised when the baseball team leaves. Anyone even know how old “City Stadium” is anyway? The soccer team… Read more »

Michael Morgan-Dodson
Michael Morgan-Dodson
11 months ago
Reply to  Scott Brown

The Kickers got a 40-year lease after the City spent millions to study and do an RFP for redevelopment of City stadium. The Kickers signed that deal in 2017 with the agreement that gave them the revenues, control and rights to develop that site. They are supposed to spend $20M to improve it three phases by 2050. I think they pay $1 a month in rent. The details on the actual improvements, timeline for each year, and financing (by the Kickers) was to come later. I doubt the Kickers would get a better deal in the Counties.

William Willis
William Willis
11 months ago
Reply to  Scott Brown

I would love to see Ukrops build a new soccer stadium in Manchester next to the floodwall and Lee Bridge overlooking the river and city skyline.

William Willis
William Willis
11 months ago
Reply to  William Willis

Correction not Lee Bridge but 9th Street Bridge

Peter James
Peter James
11 months ago
Reply to  Scott Brown

City Stadium is 94 years old – it was built in 1929.

William Willis
William Willis
11 months ago
Reply to  Peter James

Imagine something like this bult in Manchester overlooking the floodwall and City Skyline for the Richmond Kickers https://www.forbes.com/sites/ianquillen/2021/05/20/the-usl-is-experiencing-a-soccer-stadium-boom-its-real-estate-chief-explains-why/?sh=753fa05d7f97

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
11 months ago
Reply to  Scott Brown

“Neolibs” lol

William Willis
William Willis
11 months ago

Not too shabby, I am liking the Capstone Development LLC and City Center Gateway Partners two the best. Either way a definitely improvement over what is there currently.

Casey Flores
Casey Flores
11 months ago

They all look great. I worry about the same team doing this as the Diamond as it may be hard to focus or if financial difficulties arise, both projects would be stalled. I really like the City Center Gateway Partners’ proposal and think all plans should adopt the plan to put a bridge from the hotel to the convention center. Definitely want to see height there as well as housing – including some for purchase.

Ashley Smith
Ashley Smith
11 months ago

Does a performance stage make sense given the amphitheatre we’re about to get as well?

David Humphrey
David Humphrey
11 months ago
Reply to  Ashley Smith

Two totally different size venues.

Ramone Antonio
Ramone Antonio
11 months ago

They all look great. I do hope there is more of an attraction to this area for tourists besides a convention center. Things like an Aquarium, indoor wave surfing or a Big Spa etc. Just an idea of things that would draw people to visit our awesome city.

Justin Ranson
Justin Ranson
11 months ago
Reply to  Ramone Antonio

Oh man, I’d love an Aquarium – Realistically, there needs to be SOMETHING to support the convention center. People like to hold big conventions in places where there are other things to do within walking distance. Residential is great, but they need to add something else to attract out-of-town conventions.

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
11 months ago
Reply to  Justin Ranson

Sure. But I bet it would be cheaper and cooler if the city just helped Broad Street get renovated/ adaptively reused, etc — it could be a really cool scene — it has been trying, but it’s been over 20 years and it still hasn’t popped yet.

Jerel C Wilmore
Jerel C Wilmore
11 months ago

I can’t wait to see which proposal wins the opportunity to be messed around with by city council for years before the whole thing is dropped and the process starts over again.

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
11 months ago

People don’t want to admit the truth in this statement.

Anne Whithers
Anne Whithers
11 months ago

All of these look great! I feel Richmond Community Development Partners and Capstone have the best with the bridge and the green space. RCDP is the ultimate winner for me since they have the most green space shown and it seems like they are alluding to solar on their pitch which RVA needs more environmentally focused construction. It’s awesome watching RVA grow

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
11 months ago
Reply to  Anne Whithers

Yep

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
11 months ago

Well I guess my plan for a squatter “Arts Collective” is just a dream…

But these look nice enough and it seems Capstone is proposing bring a bit of funkiness to Richmond, I could dig it.

Best of all, all this shows how much interest there is in building in Richmond — that is not true everywhere…. now City Hall needs leaders who want to work WITH all the positive energy-~~~~~~~~>

john gerencser
john gerencser
11 months ago

Hi there, seems too me that a lot of people are hoping the city fails with this project. They are convinced the county officials do everything better than city officials. Until now, the counties haven’t had any kind of multipurpose development that approaches the scale of what the city is trying to accomplish with the diamond district and the coliseum area. One only has to look at Short Pump and realise the Henrico just lets developers do what they want. This is the result of lots and lots of land. Richmond does not have this luxury. I want the city… Read more »

Michael Morgan-Dodson
Michael Morgan-Dodson
11 months ago
Reply to  john gerencser

Hoping and knowing are two different things. I HOPE to win the lottery with every PowerBall ticket but I KNOW that is not the case. I hope the City get a winning deal but pointing out the flaws that the city does with its deal with developers going back to Main Street Station Mall and Festival Marketplace (early 1980s). Inflated user numbers, revenue, and talk of big shiny store and places that will bring in the revenue. One only has to look at the City’s history of major (and minor but taxpayer contributed) development deals to see the developers get… Read more »

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
11 months ago

Don’t forget the Stoney administration killed a bunch of businesses in Shockoe Bottom all to spend a bunch of money to redo the plaza near the Train Station.

They are worse than you describe.

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
11 months ago
Reply to  john gerencser

I disagree. I don’t think ANYONE wants the city to fail at ANYTHING other than the usual corruption and trying to control things for political goals. Seriously, only the most mean spirited or embittered would root against the city — if you live in the greater metro, you’d be a fool to root against the city. What you are hearing is FRUSTRATION, and many of the people expressing the frustration used to have higher hopes that were… frustrated…. on multiple occations. This has happened so much that it almost seems a Law of Nature here, and if there was any… Read more »

Victoria Woodhull
Victoria Woodhull
11 months ago

What would be great, is to expand the biotechnology park. We need to get some “big boys” to move and commit to expand the biotechnology. What about a company like Neurolink? Why did RVA chase out all of it’s large pharma companies (Wyeth/Pfizer)?

Michael Morgan-Dodson
Michael Morgan-Dodson
11 months ago

FYI Wyeth in Richmond became apart Pfizer (2009) who then sold its consumer brands to GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) in 2019. GSK split off into two division with consumer products again last year being split into a new UK firm called Haleon. Haleon still has a huge R&D facility on Sherman Road in the City.

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
11 months ago

Thanks for the info!!

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
11 months ago

I would agree, and would love to see more biotech here, instead of another hatchet throwing/craft mead venue.

But why exactly does Richmond think it can attract lots more biotech? We’re not Boston — we’re not even Salt Lake City.

What we DO have a lot of in the greater Richmond region, and few seem to know this outside of the biz, is CHEMICAL ENGINEERING. Now, the guy who hates the Neolibs won’t be for this, but it is big business with great paying jobs, and they would have to build more PARKING!