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Urbanization of Innsbrook inches ahead with mixed-use plan

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Posted at 10:44 AM, Feb 06, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-06 10:44:43-05

HENRICO, Va. — The plan to transition Innsbrook from a suburban office park to an urban mixed-use community is gaining traction.

A rare rezoning request under Henrico County’s new urban mixed-use (UMU) zoning district is set to go before the planning commission at its meeting this Thursday. The request could transform a 4-acre parcel at the southeast corner of Innslake Drive and Dominion Boulevard from an individual office building into a mix of residential and office uses.

WAM Associates LLC, a group of investors led by developer and broker Joe Marchetti Jr., is seeking a UMU zoning and provisional-use permit to add two buildings totaling 350 apartments and a structured parking deck around an existing office building at 4235 Innslake Drive. The 28,400-square-foot building on the site currently houses Benchmark Mortgage Companies.

While not the first request under the UMU designation – Highwoods Properties received approval for a UMU district on 40 acres southwest of Cox Road and Sadler Place in 2012 – the request is the first since the creation last June of an Innsbrook overlay district that allows for UMU zoning on parcels with a minimum of 4 acres. Previously, UMU was restricted to parcels 20 acres or larger, as it continues to be outside the Innsbrook overlay.

The request could transform a 4-acre parcel at the southeast corner of Innslake Drive and Dominion Boulevard into a mixed-use development. (Kieran McQuilkin)

The request could transform a 4-acre parcel at the southeast corner of Innslake Drive and Dominion Boulevard into a mixed-use development. (Kieran McQuilkin)

Marchetti said the project would follow suit with a 2010 study and urban design guidelines that have been in the works for Innsbrook over the past several years. Those guidelines are meant to help transition the 630-acre park east of Short Pump from primarily office buildings and surface parking lots to a mix of uses that include residential and retail.

“The workforce needs for our new, younger workers are changing dramatically. They’re more about living and working and playing in a tighter environment, so they put less emphasis on cars and more emphasis on walking and bikes,” Marchetti said.

“The new Innsbrook design guidelines along with the new UMU zoning allow for the residential densification of the Innsbrook office park,” he said. “This is just allowing Innsbrook to compete with the urban core for businesses, to keep the jobs in the park.”

WAM Associates LLC purchased the 4-acre parcel at Innslake and Dominion for $3.96 million in 2008. The existing building was constructed in 1984, according to county property records.

Plans call for two new five-story buildings containing 350 one- and two-bedroom apartments and a new three-level parking deck with 261 spaces. With existing parking, that would bring the total number of spaces on the property to 329.

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