Earth moving around College Drive

Published 12:22 pm Saturday, April 5, 2014

The developer of luxury apartments Hampton Roads Crossing plans a new shopping center that will be attached to the Kroger Marketplace about to go up off North Suffolk’s College Drive.

John Peterson III, senior vice president of The Terry Peterson Companies — whose apartment project off Hampton Roads Parkway is around the corner — said the approximately 100,000-square-foot shopping center would be “a little bit like what they have done at Harbour View East.”

“(It) will be basically attached to the Kroger, directly to the north,” Peterson said.

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“We are in the process of leasing right now, (but) we don’t have any tenants, nor do we have a delivery date.”

Peterson said he suspects there will be tenants to announce in the summer. “We only need to get site plan approval, then permits for the building,” he said. “The infrastructure around it is all being developed as part of the Kroger development.”

In November, Kroger announced the hybrid grocery store, incorporating 30,000 square feet of non-grocery items — like furniture, home décor, appliances and storage needs — with 96,000 square feet of traditional grocery space.

The company’s Mid Atlantic real estate manager, Fenton Childers, said it will be Hampton Roads’ 10th Kroger and Virginia’s fifth Kroger Marketplace — the fourth is under construction in Portsmouth, and the third is trading in Virginia Beach.

According to Suffolk spokeswoman Diana Klink, the site plan for Kroger has been approved and a land-disturbing permit obtained. “Architectural plans have been approved, and a building permit has been issued,” she added.

“There’s a great deal of activity going on,” Childers said. “We have been working on preparing the pad for our store — and the foundations — for some time.”

Much of the utility and storm-water management work has been done, he said, adding, “You will probably see walls going up in the near future. Once that foundation is complete, you will see walls go up immediately, and after a couple of weeks they will be hanging ceiling and putting the roof on.”

A harsh winter made building conditions tough, Childers said, but the company plans to open the doors to the public in the fall with a target of November opening.

Peterson said the infrastructure around his company’s future new shopping center is being developed as part of the Kroger Marketplace project.

The developer is expected to apply for building permits for the shopping center sometime in the fall.

Still being the early stages of development, a name for the new shopping center has yet to be decided, Peterson said, but he added that whatever name is selected would include “Hampton Roads Crossing.”

Childers said Kroger selected North Suffolk’s College Drive for its new store “because of the exciting growth in that area.”

The large number of multi-family residences going ahead in the area would provide the density of population required for a store like Kroger Marketplace to generate the sales it needs, Childers said.

Besides Hampton Roads Crossing, which property manager Adrienne Newson said will incorporate 216 one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments, Meridian Harbourview, which can be seen from Interstate 664 near the Western Freeway interchange, is also going up fast.

Off Harbour View Boulevard, those 224 apartments — also one-, two- and three-bedroom, and specifically described as garden-style apartments — are being occupied by renters as buildings are completed, according to Renee Pulliam, Property Management Division vice president of developer Waverton Associates.