700-unit Innsbrook apartment project could begin construction in early 2021

By SEAN GORMAN Richmond Times-Dispatch

A Hampton Roads-based developer hopes to begin building a 700-unit apartment community in Henrico County’s Innsbrook office park early next year.

Robinson Development Group plans to build the apartments and roughly 28,000 square feet of commercial space on a 14-acre site between Sadler Road and Dominion Boulevard.

Hal Yuill, a Robinson vice president, said the site’s proximity to millions of square feet of Innsbrook offices could entice workers to sign leases for apartments near their jobs. The office park covers 650 acres.

“I think it’s a captive audience for renters,” Yuill said.

Most of the apartments would be studios and one-bedroom units, although there would be some two- and three-bedroom apartments. Yuill said he hopes construction will begin in the first quarter of 2021 and is expected to take 18 to 20 months.

In addition to a short commute for Innsbrook workers, the site is near West Broad Street as well as Interstates 295 and 64, which provide regionwide access.

“It’s sort of Main and Main from a location standpoint for all of greater Richmond,” Yuill said.

In November, the Henrico Board of Supervisors provided zoning approvals needed for 13 acres of the site.

Last week, the board provided additional approvals to rezone a neighboring 1-acre parcel to help pave the way for the apartment community’s development.

The approvals rezoned the 14 acres from an office area into an urban mixed-use district. A county staff report last November noted that the project would meet urban design guidelines that aim to transform the suburban office park, which was created several decades ago, into a higher-density and increasingly residential area.

Innsbrook could support added growth through infill development, Henrico officials say.

“The area has the potential to be redeveloped with a mixture of uses that take advantage of existing infrastructure, uses and population base,” the county website says.

In addition to the Robinson proposal, other apartment projects are in the works in the Innsbrook area, according to Joe Emerson, Henrico’s planning director.

There is a 100-unit apartment building at Innslake Place, which is at the corner of Innslake Drive and Dominion Boulevard. That five-story building is almost ready for occupancy, Emerson said.

A 123-apartment building is under construction at the same location, and county officials are also reviewing a proposal for the Silver Hills Apartments, a proposed 234-unit development at Nuckols and Sadler roads, Emerson said.

He said construction plans for Robinson’s community have not yet been submitted to county officials.

The conceptual layout of Robinson’s project calls for two main apartment complexes — one that is four stories and the other rising to five, county officials said in a November staff report. Each complex would consist of a pair of L-shaped buildings surrounding a central parking deck, and there would be commercial space on the first floor of the buildings, according to conceptual plans.

Next to Dominion Boulevard, there would be about 14,000 square feet of commercial space in another building, said Jeff Geiger, a land-use attorney for Robinson.

“The goal is to provide commercial space for the residents and the people in Innsbrook,” Geiger said.

Approvals were granted amid concerns from nearby property owners that the new mixed-use community would add too much congestion to neighboring roads.