08/23/09: “Eagle Village Is Taking Off,” The Free Lance-Star

Eagle Village Is Taking Off
UMW making progress on Eagle Village

The University of Mary Washington’s Eagle Village will have about eight restaurants—local and chain—when the first phase opens in August 2010, UMW Foundation President Jeff Rountree said in an interview last week.

He said he expects the initial redevelopment of the former Park & Shop retail center to have about 15 stores total, but would confirm only two—Quiznos and Lee’s Cleaners.

Those stores will be on the first floor of Eagle Village’s 244,000-square-foot mixed-use facility, which is being built where Roses used to be. It will have a parking garage and retail and office space.

Lee’s Cleaners plans to move there from its location at the far end of the shopping center.

“We’re actually experiencing quite an active pool of tenants vying to come in, which is not happening anywhere else,” Rountree said.

He said Eagle Village will offer a “diverse culinary grouping of restaurants.”

Rountree said work on the $115 million first phase—paid for by UMW’s private foundation—is on schedule for a summer 2010 opening.

The 7-acre construction site is off U.S. 1, across from the Fredericksburg campus.

UMW is still planning the project’s second phase, but Rountree said he thinks it will include student apartments above retail space.

Model Apartment Will be On Display This Fall

In addition to shops and restaurants, the first phase will have a 212,000-square-foot housing complex with 156 student apartments. The two-bedroom apartments can house up to four students and will be finished by next July, Rountree said.

UMW hopes to unveil a model of an apartment in October at the former Frank’s Nursery & Crafts site.

These days, three five-story stair-and-elevator towers are the tallest structures on the construction site. They won’t stand out for long.

By mid-December, Rountree said, he expects to have a roof on the apartment complex. Walls will go up on the mixed-use building in September, he said.

Related Projects Under Way

UMW also is clearing land next to Goolrick Hall for the $15 million Anderson Center—named for former university President William Anderson. The 55,000-square-foot convocation center will seat up to 2,700 and will be a venue for basketball games, concerts and other performances.

It’s scheduled to open in late spring 2011.

In mid-January, UMW hopes to put up a pedestrian bridge over U.S. 1, a little north of College Avenue—near the Anderson Center’s future site. The school is working with city officials to close a portion of U.S. 1 for three days.

“It’s going to be quite a spectacle,” said Rountree, who expects a lot of observers.

The school will need three cranes to install the walkway’s pre-built pieces. Workers will construct those parts in a fenced-in area behind the Twi–Lite Motel, which UMW purchased earlier this year.

It’s unclear when the Twi–Lite Motel will be demolished.

In the coming months, Rountree said, he expects a lot of progress on Eagle Village and hopes to announce more tenants.

“It’s going to take off.”

Jeff Branscome: (540) 374-5402
Email: jbranscome@freelancestar.com
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Published: August 23, 2009 by The Free Lance-Star

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