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Development Update: LC RiverSouth

Brent Warren Brent Warren Development Update: LC RiverSouthPhoto by Walker Evans.
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After a series of delays and false starts, progress is now undeniable at the corner of Rich and High streets Downtown. An eight-story building is close to being topped out at the northwest corner, and foundation work for the second “mirror-image” building on the south side of Rich is well underway.

Lifestyle Communities brought the first iteration of the project to the Downtown Commission in the fall of 2012, dubbing it LC RiverSouth. That remains the official name, although new branding for the two individual buildings — one at the former site of the Trautman building on the north corner, the other across Rich where the Beatty building previously stood —will likely be revealed soon.

Columbus Underground recently sat down with Chad Thompson, Chief Marketing Officer for Lifestyle Communities, to get the latest on where the project stands. Regarding the delays, Thompson cited a number of factors, including structural concerns relating to adjacent historic buildings. The Swan Cleaners building, which sits next to the Beatty site, is now scheduled to be demolished to make way for Crawford Hoying’s new 11-story mixed-use project, but to the north, the 199-201 South High building (where deNOVO Bistro used to be located) has been renovated, with the owners looking for tenants for the ground-floor restaurant space and second-floor apartments.

Thompson explained that the current construction boom — and resultant tight labor market — also played a role, making it more difficult to line up subcontractors. He also stressed that LC has many other projects in the works, and has grown substantially as a company over the course of the last year:

“Obviously, urban projects get a ton of attention, and appropriately so, they’re exciting. I’m from here, and it’s great to see that there’s so much going on in our city, but we have a project about to open and lease up in New Albany that’s 18 acres, plus new developments in Canal Winchester and Gahanna, so the volume is pretty intense. Outside of our home base, we have been pretty active in developing projects and pursuing land in other markets. We’re at an incredible tipping point for a small business, really expanding, and sometimes that comes with growing pains, just like any other entrepreneur.”

Fall of 2017 is now the target for opening the first building, with the second building opening at an undetermined time in the future . Thompson is confident that the final product will be worth the wait, with amenities like LC’s signature “The Goat” bar and restaurant, an outdoor pool and a courtyard visible from the street.

“What I love is that when you’re walking down High Street, you’ll be able to look through The Goat, which will have a great indoor-outdoor space, and see through to the pool,” he said.

The second building, on the Beatty site, will have a fitness studio and courtyard on the ground level. Amenities in both buildings will also be available to residents of the Annex at RiverSouth, LC’s adjacent development that was an early entry into the Downtown upscale apartment market when it opened in 2008.

Thompson is also excited about the future of the immediate neighborhood.

“It’s great to see that kind of concentration, with Millennial Tower and all the other projects,” he stated. “We know that with the people will come better entertainment options, and with the river and how it’s changed, the Scioto Mile, it’s become a really nice destination, a great place to live.”

For more information, visit www.lifestylecommunities.com.

CLICK HERE to read more about how LC is growing in markets like Nashville and Louisville.

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