Grand Opening to Showcase New Market-Rate Homes in Weinland Park
Wagenbrenner Development is hosting a party on Sunday to show off the completed model home in their Grant Park development. The project, which first broke ground late last year, marks the first foray into new market-rate housing for the developer in Weinland Park.
The plan is to eventually build 41 single family houses on the former Columbus Coated Fabric site along North Grant Avenue, north of East Fifth Avenue.
Wagenbrenner’s Eric Casto, who is overseeing the marketing of the homes, said that they are excited to get people into the model home where they can see the layout and finishes for themselves.
“We really wanted to do an above-and-beyond open house, grand-opening-style,” he said, “because we know from our previous development work, sometimes it’s hard to be one of the early buyers when there’s still a lot of undeveloped land around.”
Casto sees similarities between Grant Park and another of the company’s brownfield-to-residential projects; “It looks a lot like when we started at Harrison Park, and that brings out optimism but it also brings out skepticism,” he said, “so this really gives us the opportunity to show people what the houses look like and what the location has to offer.”
Two buyers are in contract, Casto said, with their houses currently under construction and on track to be completed by spring. The rest of the houses will be built “as quickly as demand dictates, we hope that we’ll have a two to two-and-a-half year build phase.”
Across Grant Avenue from the new homes, Wagenbrenner partner Joe Williams said they are planning to build a park along with for-sale units in a yet-to-be-determined multi-family product.
“We have a perfect kind of litmus test,” he said. “Grant Commons on Eleventh Avenue is going to start leasing probably next month, and that’ll be a high quality, fully-gutted rehab rental product, and then we have the new homes on Grant, so we can gauge the buyer versus rental interest for Weinland Park.”
The market-rate project marks a milestone of sorts for the neighborhood, which has see a years-long revitalization effort involving many community groups, foundations, and the Ohio State University.
“A lot of the early days of the revitalization efforts in Weinland Park were about affordability,” said Williams, referencing a recent Greater Ohio report that stressed the importance of a mix of incomes in successful urban neighborhoods. “They preserved and rehabbed all of those Section 8 properties and put them under good management, that was the first step ten years ago… and then we did 40 lease-purchase homes. We’ve done a lot with affordability, so now the next logical step — although we’ll continue to look for affordable options — is to bring in the market-rate piece.”
More information on Grant Park can be found at www.grantparkcolumbus.com.
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Photos provided by Wagenbrenner Development.