Three Development Ideas Considered for North Market Parking Lot
The City of Columbus has narrowed the list of finalists to develop the North Market parking lot to three. Nationwide Realty Investors, Pizzuti, and the Wood Companies/Schiff Capital Group are the developers that made the cut.
“We look forward to continuing our evaluation with these three teams,” said Development Director Steve Schoeny. “When we reviewed the requests for proposals, we wanted to make sure that potential developments made sense for the area and would be a good fit for the long run. We are pleased with the outstanding interest that we received.”
The three finalists will revise their proposals and a winner will be announced in February of next year.
The other developers who submitted proposals were Casto, Kaufman Development, Lifestyle Communities, and Flaherty & Collins (from Indianapolis, the only out-of-town developer of the seven).
“We got what we wanted from the process, which was a real diversity of proposals,” said Schoeny. “It was difficult to narrow it down to these three, but on balance, they are the ones that have the most to offer for the neighborhood, the market, and the city. They are also the ones that have the best chance of moving forward…and these are three developers that know the area really well.”
After the winning proposal is selected, it would still need to gain approval from the Historic Resources Commission, the Downtown Commission, and City Council.
Images released by the city show a major residential tower being proposed by the Wood/Schiff team. Schoeny said that NRI has chosen not to share the visuals from their proposal, although he said that it is the least dense of the three.
Pizzuti’s proposal consists of two towers – one office and one residential.
“We are not emphasizing office as much, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see not as much office in the final proposal,” said Shoeny. He added that the committee that selected the three finalists (made up of city staff and two representatives of the North Market) felt that residential was the optimal use for the development, both because of traffic concerns and for the positive impact that an influx of new residents would have on the market.
Schoeny’s office will make the final decision on the selection, with input from the North Market, the city’s finance department and the mayor’s office.
“This has been a thrilling process to see what a future North Market can become. I am pleased and honored to have served on the selection committee as we look to enhance our city’s iconic public market for perpetuity ,” said Rick Harrison Wolfe, North Market executive director.
A public meeting was held in November to solicit community input on the plans.