Motorists Insurance Group continues to give new life to the Discovery District in Downtown Columbus. Motorists announced it will initially invest nearly $20 million to begin developing its real estate holdings in Downtown Columbus. The Columbus-based company plans to develop mixed-use residential and commercial retail buildings overlooking the Topiary Park on the corner of Oak Street and Washington Avenue.
The newest development project will create an attractive neighborhood atmosphere for the area, benefiting residents and the community. A four-step plan calls for the construction of five buildings, including landscaping and improvements to adjacent properties.
The phased approach begins with the development of an 82,960 square foot building with 68 apartment units (13 two-bedroom townhomes; 15 two-bedroom units; 31 one-bedroom units; and nine studio units). This building will have a small retail area at the ground level. 114 parking spaces will be developed to support residents and visitors. In addition, a new pedestrian promenade will be developed on the south edge of the development.
Motorists’ long range development plans also include investing over $62 million to develop four additional buildings with 188 residential units, retail space and integrated parking and garages to support each phase totaling 688 parking spaces.
“We are making another significant investment in our community,” said Dave Kaufman, President and CEO of Motorists Insurance Group. “We’re proud of our financial commitment and ongoing support of community improvements including the Topiary Park, Columbus Metropolitan Library, Columbus Museum of Art and the new wing for the Ronald McDonald House of Central Ohio.”
In 2010, the Columbus Downtown Development Corporation (CDDC) worked with the City to develop the Downtown Strategic Plan, which set forth a goal of creating a new neighborhood in the Topiary Park area. “We needed someone to step up and make an investment, and that’s exactly what Motorists Insurance Group is doing with their leadership in this project,” said Guy V. Worley, President and CEO of the CDDC. “As we’ve seen in other sections of downtown, greenspace is a catalyst for development. The Discovery District already has a gem with the Topiary Park, along with other strong civic institutions such as the Columbus Metropolitan Library, Grant Hospital and Franklin University. Now, with this project from Motorists, the neighborhood will begin to truly take shape, with new residential units and key retail space.”
Motorists Insurance Group headquarters, located at 471 East Broad Street, overlooks The Topiary Park on the northwest corner of Town Street and Washington Avenue. Since the creation of the Topiary Park, Motorists has also been a significant contributor supporting the long-term development of the Topiary Park in conjunction with the Columbus Recreation and Parks Department and the Friends of the Topiary Park. Motorists is a long-term owner of real estate with significant holdings in the Discovery District and the company intends to utilize the Topiary Park as its focal point throughout the development process.
Motorists engaged the Robert Weiler Company to update its development feasibility plan to include creating an attractive neighborhood atmosphere in the Discovery District. The first development phase will begin early 2017 and is expected to be completed by spring 2019.
Motorists Insurance Group real estate development phase one:
Motorists Insurance Group real estate development plan: