Broad Street Project Could Be First to Break Ground in Franklinton
Residents and neighborhood leaders in East Franklinton are still waiting for the first of a number of proposed residential projects to break ground. That wait could be soon be over, according to Brett Kaufman, CEO of Kaufman Development.
His company’s five story mixed-use development on the site of Phillip’s Original Coney Island and the National Office Warehouse on West Broad Street was approved by the East Franklinton Review Board in July. The plan is to start construction on the project before the end of the year.
“We are full speed ahead,” said Kaufman. “We are knee deep into finishing our drawings, getting our permits, and our financing is falling into place — we are one hundred percent committed, and either late this year or beginning of next we’re going to start moving dirt in Franklinton.”
The reluctance of banks to take a risk on the neighborhood has been cited as a prime reason that several approved developments in the neighborhood have yet to break ground. Asked if getting the project financed was a challenge, Kaufman said that the lending environment is changing rapidly.
“The first ones are always the hardest, but what we have found is that the community — the banking community and the broader community — really wants to see Franklinton happen,” he said. “You need everybody to take that jump with you — the city, the commissions, the councils, the economic development leaders — and in this case, fortunately, they’ve all gotten behind us.”
“It’s a big project, and there’s a big demand for it,” Kaufman added. “We believe that if you build the right product for the neighborhood, it’ll be successful… and in this case, it’s convenient for us that it’s exactly the kind of project that we like to build.”
For more information, visit www.livekaufman.com.
Renderings by NBBJ.