By. Chris Stritzel
On Tuesday July 17th, nearly a year after Phase 2 was revealed, the City of Richmond Heights heard more information about the proposed extension of the Boulevard. It was all to get a ordinance approved for construction of the project. After passing the critical meeting, it appears the Boulevard is moving forward after all and chugging toward full on approval from the city. The development, located just South of the current “The Boulevard” and East of the Galleria, would redevelop a large swath of land that consists of a Mattress Firm and Rally House along with a vacant store space that is used for temporary retail purposes. The current strip mall is depressing and only takes up a small percentage of the lot from Darst to Antler (see site plan).
The Boulevard Phase 2 will consist of the following amenities to truly make this development a mixed use neighborhood...
- A 5 Floor Office Building (up to 200,000 square feet of Class A Space) with retail at the base
- A 6 Floor Apartment Building with retail at the base
- A parking garage that is enclosed and hidden by the residential building. There will be a skywalk connecting the office building to the garage.
- Other retail space not connected to the buildings mentioned.
The one thing Phase 2 leaves out that previous versions included is a hotel. But with the influx of hotels in the Richmond Heights-Brentwood area, it is easy to see why a hotel was left out of the plan. Who knows, maybe Phase 3 will include a hotel but that is way far off. In last years plan, the rendering of the office building showed First Bank as a tenant. The latest edition doesn’t show First Bank at but, the marketing brochure lists First Bank as a tenant along with Deer Creek Coffee. While the marketing process for this just now officially began, it is expected that more office tenants will move into the office building.
A feature not typically found in most office buildings today is a generous 15 feet ceiling height and 33,000 square foot plates. There will also be security on site, a common feature in all of today's Class A office buildings. Overall, then design hasn't changed much since last year when it was announced. The only real major change is the update to the inward facing façade of the office building and the appearance of more brick overall. Another change is the removal of the First Bank logo. You can see the original design linked in this story HERE.
The Taller the Better
A cool thing that the marketing brochure for the office says is that "additional floors can be added". That means that if there is a large enough tenant, the office building could gain a few floors ( maximum of two additional floors). Because each floor plate is 33,000 square feet, the maximum amount of office space that you can have is 198,000 square feet. That is almost the advertised 200,000 but it works. The taller the better! The extra height, as seen in the renderings included here, will make the building more visible thus making tenants want to have their name on the building.
The plans featured above call for construction to be underway by the fall with the first tenant able to move in by the late Winter of 2019. That is if the additional two floors aren't added. With the two extra floors, I say Spring 2020.