With Commission Split on Approval, Kaufman Project On Hold
Kaufman Development’s plan to build a mixed-use development on the former IBEW land between West Second and Price Avenues is on hold after the latest iteration of the project failed to gain the support of the Victorian Village Commission last night.
“Despite great support from the broader Columbus community and several members of the Victorian Village Commission, we were unfortunately unable to demonstrate to the majority of the commission our proposal’s appropriateness,” CEO Brett Kaufman said in an email to Columbus Underground. “We will take a step back and take some time to consider all options.”
The project has called for a mix of office, retail and residential uses since it was first proposed in the summer of 2016. It has been before the commission many times over the course of the last two years, including each of the last four meetings since April. Residents shared their thoughts about the project at each of those meetings, with the majority of them expressing opposition to the development.
One big sticking point has been the height and overall size of the project. A version of the proposal – which called for the tallest part of the building to be nine stories – was approved by the commission in March of 2017, but the Kaufman team came back with a series of design changes in December of last year (which required another vote of approval).
Brett Kaufman told CU at the time that those changes were needed “so that we have something that really functions, and that we can build – that we can afford to build and get financed – and that works in the market.”
The latest iteration of the plan called for the tallest part of the project to be ten stories.
Although an official vote was not held, three commissioners signaled support for the project and three expressed opposition. One seat is vacant on the seven-person board.
The developer did not ask for the application to be continued, which means the project will not automatically appear on the agenda for next month’s meeting.
See below for a sampling of the different proposals.