The first phase of mixed-use development Riverbend Village in northwest Charlotte is coming online as the development partners are gearing up for the project’s final components.
About five years ago, Sam Simpson of Greensboro-based Simpson Commercial Real Estate and Randy Smith at Landmark Development Partners considered the 130 acres that would eventually become Riverbend Village as a good long-term play for a mixed-use project. But Charlotte’s booming growth and the completion of the Interstate 485 loop in 2015 ultimately pushed Simpson and Landmark to file a rezoning to allow a substantial development complete with office space — at that time, speculative — a grocery-anchored shopping center, housing units and a hotel.
“This site had always been identified as a strong area for mixed use and that’s evident in the initial rezoning of the property dating back to 2006,” said Lauten Crow, who manages development at Simpson Commercial.
A game changer for the site came in 2016, when Corning Optical Communications, part of Corning Inc., committed to putting its headquarters at Riverbend Village.
Construction on that office building has just wrapped up, and most of the 266 apartments developed by Simpson and Greensboro-based Brown Investment Properties are open.
The first retailers at the site have opened shop.
And some development remains ahead for Riverbend, including a 120-room Courtyard by Marriott hotel, to be developed by MRI Hotels, and townhomes by homebuilder Ryan Homes. In addition, Novant Health is under contract for about 33 acres of land originally targeted for an office building.
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