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Corso Wants to Keep Short North Focus on Locally-Owned Businesses

Walker Evans Walker Evans Corso Wants to Keep Short North Focus on Locally-Owned Businesses
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Local restaurateur and real estate developer Chris Corso has a soft spot for local businesses in the Short North. Since launching the Pint House in 2013, he’s gone on to open Forno in 2015 and Standard Hall in 2016. And after announcing plans for the Food Hall, he sees the continued success of non-chain restaurants as a vital component of the future of the rapidly developing area.

“No offense to any of the other developers that are doing amazing things in the neighborhood, but as a long-time resident of the Short North, I want unique locally-owned businesses that keep the spirit of the neighborhood,” Corso explained.

After years of operating Downtown nightclubs, Corso turned his attention to the Short North as a testing ground for more accessible restaurant and bar concepts before going larger scale with development plans. A five-story mixed-use development was proposed earlier this year by Concept Equity Development — a partnership between Corso and Mark Smith — on a site located on the northwest corner of Third Avenue and High Street. Yesterday, Corso unveiled plans for a nine story building directly across High Street.

“We’re trying to figure out what we want on that corner and what the fabric of the neighborhood will look like,” he stated. “What we don’t want to do is create something where you have to get a national tenant to make it work. My entire goal has been to control enough real estate so that we can truly have an area that is non-commercial, neighborhood friendly, with unique concepts.”

While the new development is still in a conceptual phase, Corso hopes to break ground across the street next summer on the five-story mixed use project, which will include a ground floor restaurant that he equates to the “energy of Forno.”

Stay tuned to Columbus Underground for more details.

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