Top stories of 2018: Midtown Row construction gets underway

Staff writer

Construction at Midtown Row is full steam ahead, and the mixed-use development is poised to open for business in the first half of 2021, project head Aras Holden said.

Plans for the project began last year, when Bethesda, Md.-based developer Broad Street Realty bought the Williamsburg Shopping Center for $13.3 million and the Monticello Shopping Center for $4.2 million with plans to combine the two.

In 2018, the project got off the ground with Planning Commission’s approval of a final site plan last summer, giving the developer the green light to begin construction. Since then, the Monticello Shopping Center has gotten a face-lift and a number of new stores have either opened or been announced to open at the development, while demolition work has started at the Williamsburg Shopping Center.

At an Economic Development Authority business luncheon last October, Broad Street CEO Michael Jacoby said the real estate company has invested about $110 million into the project.

A number of existing stores and restaurants will stay in the two shopping centers, including Sal’s By Victor, Food Lion, Ace Hardware and Nawab Indian Cuisine. Others have recently moved in, such as organic grocery store Earth Fare and kickboxing gym 9Round, which opened earlier this month.

Midtown Row will also bring in four five-story buildings that will feature a ground floor of retail space and four stories of apartments. In total, the project will offer 240 residential units containing 624 beds across one-, two-, three- and four-bedroom apartments.

“I don’t think it’s any secret that our residential units are geared toward students,” Jacoby said at the business luncheon. “Anybody can live there, but they’re certainly geared toward that.”

As the year winds down, crews are working to update the infrastructure on a demolished segment of the Williamsburg Shopping Center planned for new storefronts. The segment of the shopping center along Richmond Road is expected to be renovated by April 2019, Holden said.

Once that work is completed, Holden said the next phase of the project will be to break ground on the four planned mixed-use buildings and adjoining parking garage in the summer of 2019.

“We are still fine-tuning our schedules and obviously, it’s always very hard to anticipate these things, but we are contemplating a delivery in the first half of 2021,” he said.

Arriaza can be reached at 757-790-9313 or on Twitter @rodrigoarriaza0.

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