Note: This story has been updated with comments from UTurn CEO Adrienne Wright received after publication.
The allure of Henrico’s Westwood neighborhood lured a downtown developer out of town for his first foray into the suburbs.
Fulton Hill Properties, led by developer Margaret Freund, plans a seven-story building with 253 apartments at the intersection of Thalbro and Westmoreland streets, on land that was until recently part of the adjacent UTurn sports complex.
The 1.8 acre site, currently a car park and green space, is opposite Thalbro, Ukrop’s Homestyle Foods headquarters and the recently completed Tapestry West apartments.
The site was subdivided in February from the larger UTurn property and sold to Fulton Hill in April for $1.8 million. Online property records do not list a county assessment for the subdivided parcel. UTurn’s 6.3-acre property, which is now 4.5 acres, was appraised in January at $5.4 million.
Plans submitted to the county call for a seven-story structure with five levels of apartments above a two-level parking podium. Elevations show that the seven-storey building would reach around 74 feet in height, taller than the five-storey Tapestry West apartments, but comparable to the nearby Kinsale head office building.
Tapestry West, by Tennessee-based Bristol Development Group, is one of several apartment projects bringing residential development to the so-called Westwood area, the industrial corridor on the north side of West Broad Street between Westwood Avenue and Staples Mill Road .
Other apartments under construction include Spy Rock Real Estate Group’s 254-unit building near Topgolf and the 340 apartments Alliance Residential Co. is planning at the former Motleys auction site on Broad, a few blocks away. south of the Fulton Hill site.
These buildings are planned to rise five and four stories respectively. Another project planned near the north end of Westwood – a 240-unit tower by a group led by Joe Marchetti Jr. – has been approved to reach 10 stories in height.
The Fulton Hill building would include 2,500 square feet of commercial space on the ground floor and 10,000 square feet of space for amenities, including an interior courtyard and swimming pool, green spaces and plaza. The parking deck would total 299 spaces, one for each room in the building.
Apartments would consist primarily of one-bedroom floor plans, with 18 studios and 46 two-bedroom units. Plans do not include unit sizes or rents.
Reached on Wednesday, Freund declined to comment on the project ahead of a scheduled presentation to Henrico’s Planning Commission next week. The project requires an interim use permit, which Freund requests from the county with representation from Andy Condlin, a local attorney for Roth Jackson Gibbons Condlin.
In a staff report, county planners recommend deferring the request to next Thursday’s meeting to give the company time to provide additional details required by Henrico’s fire division. The report says the county could support the request once those details are provided.
According to the report, the fire division does not support the conceptual layout of the project as presented. Since the size and height of the building requires a 24-foot-wide access road on all sides that do not face a public road, the division says a turnaround for fire trucks is needed there. where the access roads would result in a dead end fire lane. .
Fulton Hill is working on the project with civil engineering firm VHB. Poole & Poole Architecture designed the building and apartments.
The staff report says UTurn previously used the site for parking and would continue operations on its remaining property, which includes a 160,000 square foot building that also houses its Collaboratory of Virginia coworking space for nonprofits. .
CEO Adrienne Wright said UTurn and the Collaboratory are working with Fulton Hill on opportunities to provide amenities and services to apartment residents.
“We are excited about the project,” Wright said Thursday, adding that UTurn had been approached by several developers since it purchased the building in 2005.
“I am aware of Margaret’s work in Richmond. I think she’s going to be really great in this market for the Westwood development because she brings sensitivity to mixed-use housing,” Wright said. “I am delighted that she is part of the overall development of this region.”
The development would be Fulton Hill’s first outside the city, according to its website. The company’s other developments include Artisan Hill, the Lady Byrd Hat building and the Canal Crossing complex, where it recently began an apartment addition that will add 44 units above the Buffalo Wild Wings.
Corrections: Tapestry West was developed by Bristol Development Group. An earlier version of this story mentioned a different developer.
VHB is the civil engineer for the project. Another company mentioned earlier is not involved in the project.