Work will start in the next week or so on Rocketts Landing, a riverfront village off Old Osborne Turnpike (Route 5) east of Tobacco Row and near where the Annabel Lee riverboat was docked.
Named for Robert Rockett, who ran a ferry across the James River in 1730, the development will feature high-density living, designed to facilitate walking to shops, restaurants and neighbors. New town houses will take on the character of Richmond’s historic Fan District neighborhood. The centerpiece on this 45-acre site straddling Richmond and Henrico County will be a marina and docks. There will also be a seven-story riverfront condo complex, luxury apartments and the renovation of historic buildings into condos and offices.
Plans call for 1,400 residential units ranging from 700 square feet to 2,200 square feet. Prices will be from $150,000 to $650,000. Three custom-built penthouses with 3,500 square feet each in the riverfront condo are estimated to sell for $1 million plus. The first buildings will begin rising from the ground by year’s end, and people will live in Rocketts Landing by early 2007. Some drawings of what the project will look like are available here (wait for the animation to finish loading).
Once a bustling harbor for Richmond, the port fell into disrepair in the late 1800s. A blighted residential area was leveled in the 1970s. The land is an idled industrial brown-field, a contaminated site that once housed coal yards and oil storage tanks. Environmental repairs for Rocketts Landing include soil replacement and restricted access to groundwater.