Work starting on 700-unit ‘Metropolis at Innsbrook’ after $8M land deal

By Jonathan Spiers – Richmond BizSense

The first phase of a massive mixed-use development that’s set to add hundreds of apartments in Innsbrook is getting underway.

Robinson Development Group is starting work on Metropolis at Innsbrook, the first part of a two-phased project that’s planned to fill a 14-acre site between Dominion Boulevard and Sadler Road, just north of the Wells Fargo campus off Innslake Drive.

At buildout, the full development is planned for 700 apartments and 13,000 square feet of commercial and amenity space — a reduction from initial plans that had called for more than twice that amount of commercial and amenity space.

The initial phase will consist of two apartment buildings and a parking garage on an 8-acre lot fronting Dominion Boulevard. The two buildings will total 402 units, with sizes ranging from 450-square-foot studios to three-bedroom floorplans totaling 1,200 square feet. Monthly rents have not been set.

The phase is estimated to cost $83 million and take two years to complete, with the first units delivered in 18 months. A schedule for the second phase has yet to be determined, said Hal Yuill, Robinson’s vice president of investments and acquisitions.

The 8-acre lot was recently subdivided from the larger parcel that Robinson purchased last year from Wells Fargo. The company had paid $7.4 million for the 14-acre parcel, and sold the 8-acre portion for $8.44 million in a deal that closed June 9.

Yuill said the lot was sold to a joint venture consisting of principals with Robinson and other new investors. Henrico property records list the buyer as Innsbrook Apartments I LLC, which lists Robinson’s Norfolk address as its office.

Yuill said the larger parcel, at 4359 Sadler Road, was broken up into three lots per a subdivision plat recorded with the county. Robinson retains ownership of the other two lots.

The commercial and amenity portion of the project, to be built in the second phase, will fill a smaller lot fronting Dominion Boulevard, with an address of 4400 Dominion Blvd. The smaller lot will initially be used as a construction retention pond.

The rest of the second-phase land has not been assigned an address and will be accessed via the first-phase site. Yuill said access to the site will be from Dominion Boulevard, with no access from Sadler Road.

The apartments will be housed in four- and five-story buildings surrounded by parking decks with direct floor access for residents. Community amenities are planned to include two courtyards, a pool, a fitness center and a rooftop social area. Six street-level units will be designed as “live-work” spaces.

Peter Vick and Harrison Hall with Colliers International are handling leasing for the commercial space.

KBS is the contractor on the project, and Saunders + Crouse Architects is the designer. Townes Site Engineering is the civil engineer.

Robinson’s other developments in the region include Sapphire at CenterPointe, a 192-unit complex in Midlothian that it recently sold to Capital Square for $48.3 million. It also developed the next-door Oxygen at CenterPointe, a 255-unit complex that it sold in 2017 for $45.8 million.

Metropolis at Innsbrook is getting underway just as other developers are moving forward with their own infill projects in the transitioning office park.

Just south of Robinson’s site, at Dominion Boulevard and Innslake Drive, WAM Associates LLC, led by Joe Marchetti Jr., and Richmond-based WVS Cos., is finishing up their 220-unit Innslake Place.

To the north, Dominion Realty Partners is looking to develop a mix of apartments and for-sale townhomes totaling 360 units at 5000 Dominion Blvd., beside Dominion Energy’s Innsbrook operations center.

And Lingerfelt CommonWealth Partners, headquartered in Innsbrook, recently filed plans with the county for a series of infill projects that would add nearly 1,400 apartments in coming years.