Guiding and facilitating a dozen of the area’s most eagerly anticipated and prominent mixed-use development projects, Tarabicos Grosso’s real estate attorneys are leading the way with land use approvals, transactional work, and leasing in connection with these communities. These innovative projects promote smart growth and redevelopment in Delaware with pedestrian-friendly design that blends residential, commercial, and institutional uses to serve our local communities and spur economic development.
Demand for this type of mixed-use real estate has swept the nation in recent years, with developers and communities across the U.S. seeking to create destinations where residents, tenants, and patrons can live, work, shop, and play. Our firm has led the way in bringing this model to Delaware, with a record of successful, groundbreaking, and diverse mixed-use projects, including most notably: the Town of Whitehall in Middletown; the Galleria at 2000 Pennsylvania Avenue in Wilmington; Linden Hill Station in Pike Creek; and Forwood Commons and Concord Plaza in Brandywine Hundred.
Some of our active projects currently making headlines include:
Our firm is assisting developer Delle Donne & Associates, Inc. in connection with the proposed $350 million redevelopment project known as Avenue North, a bold and ambitious plan to infuse new life into the 80-acre property and its existing office campus located at the intersection of Concord Pike and Powder Mill Road in Wilmington. The proposal seeks to reinvigorate this area of Brandywine Hundred with a modern, walkable, amenity-filled campus combining one million square feet of premium office space, 335 luxury apartments, a 200-room hotel and conference center, and retail space to include shops, restaurants, and other community amenities. Upon its completion, Avenue North will contain at least 1.8 million square feet of end-user space, becoming a modern, community destination on a scale unlike anything built in Delaware. Tarabicos Grosso partners Mike Hoffman and Larry Tarabicos are leading the legal team with respect to obtaining land development approvals for the project, with an initial plan currently under review by the County.
Developer Ernest F. Delle Donne, through an affiliated LLC, acquired the Avenue North property in June 2017 in a complex transaction guided by firm partners Geoff Grosso and Scott Matthews. Geoff and Scott continue to lead the legal team with respect to Avenue North’s transactional matters and, most recently, played a key role in the negotiation of long-term leases for premium Class A office space located in the site’s existing Center and Pavilion Buildings. The firm represented the landlord, Brandywine Investment Group II, LLC, an affiliate of Delle Donne & Associates, in connection with the leasing of the entire Center Building (containing approx. 386,000 square feet of office space) to Delaware health care giant Christiana Care and the leasing of the entire Pavilion building (containing approx. 90,000 square feet of office space) to global water treatment leader Solenis.
Read more here.
Barley Mill Plaza
Our firm is also assisting developer Pettinaro Company with land use approvals for the most recently announced project at the old Barley Mill Plaza property in Greenville. The proposed redevelopment project seeks to revitalize the long-vacant business center, formerly the site of DuPont Co., with a mixed use community combining residential, office, and retail uses with attractive, modern design to create an upscale community destination.
Plans for the site include 80 residential luxury “flats” unique to the area and housed in attractive, high-end, 4-story buildings, as well as an additional 33 upscale townhomes consistent with the Greenville area. Also proposed are two brand-new, attractive 3-story office buildings consisting of 160,800 square feet of modern office space and 152,200 square feet of retail space to include restaurants with outdoor seating, a bank, and Delaware’s first – and highly anticipated – Wegmans supermarket.
With the guidance of Larry Tarabicos and Mike Hoffman, Pettinaro’s preliminary proposal to transform the long-inactive portion of Barley Mill Plaza into a modern, walkable community amenity is receiving widely positive feedback and support from the community. News that Wegmans is expected to open at the site in 2022 received cheers and applause from the audience at recent community meetings.
This is the second major development project Tarabicos Grosso has facilitated at Barley Mill Plaza. In 2015, our firm represented Odyssey Charter School in connection with its acquisition and redevelopment of approximately 36 acres at Barley Mill Plaza to serve as the school’s K-through-12 campus. The project, financed through the issuance of $34.65 Million in bonds by the Delaware Economic Development Authority, was the largest such bond offering ever for a Delaware charter school.
Read more here.
College Square Shopping Center
Mike Hoffman is also assisting owner and developer Fusco Management with the land use approvals for the proposed redevelopment of the College Square Shopping Center in Newark. The project seeks to re-energize the 46-acre site by transforming the aging shopping center into a modern, vibrant, walkable, active lifestyle center with a mix of retail and residential space.
The proposed mixed-use complex will blend retail space, expected to include a grocery store, bank, restaurants with outdoor seating, coffee shop, and pharmacy, with 306 apartments to be housed in an attractive, modern, 4-story building. The mostly one-bedroom and two-bedroom apartments are designed to appeal to young professionals and empty nesters. The project also proposes the addition of a thoroughfare connecting Delaware Avenue to Marrows Road. Between the lanes of the road will be a vibrant, community plaza with tables and benches designed to enhance the neighborhood feel while also serving as a traffic calming measure. Over 20% of the property will be maintained as green space.
Read more here.
Fairfield Shopping Center
Our firm also recently assisted developer Delle Donne & Associates, Inc. with the financing, leasing, and land use approvals for Fairfield Shopping Center in Newark, including the negotiation of a lease for a new, eagerly anticipated Food Lion supermarket. Food Lion has taken over the space formerly occupied by Superfresh, which closed in 2015 after the company went bankrupt, leaving residents of west Newark and nearby corners of Pennsylvania and Maryland with extremely limited options for groceries. The expanded and newly renovated store features a fresh, modern design and has provided employment to many in the area, including employees of the former Superfresh.
Tarabicos Grosso represented the landlord, FSC SPE, LLC, an affiliate of Delle Donne & Associates, in connection with the negotiation of a long-term lease to Food Lion, LLC. Partners Geoff Grosso and Scott Matthews led the legal team with respect to the leasing and transactional work for the project, which also included a $7,950,000.00 financing transaction to fund the renovation of the shopping center.
Read more here.
Mixed-Use Projects Underway
Town of Whitehall
Galleria at 2000 Pennsylvania Avenue
Linden Hill Station
What’s New at Tarabicos Grosso
As we continue to work on larger and more complex land use and commercial real estate projects, we continue to add highly skilled professionals to our team. Associate attorney Noah D. Chamberlain has recently joined our firm.
Noah D. Chamberlain graduated, cum laude, in 2017 from the J. Reuben Clark Law School, Brigham Young University, where he served as executive editor of the Journal of Public Law. Noah has since gained experience in corporate law, governance, and real estate with a prominent local law firm.
Tarabicos Grosso is also pleased to welcome rising third year law students Alberto M. Longo and T. Paul Markovits to the firm as participants in our 2019 summer associate program. Tarabicos Grosso’s 10-week summer associate program provides accomplished law students with the opportunity to gain practical law firm experience and exposure to a wide range of interesting legal matters and client projects.
The firm continues to do excellent work in 2019, with rewarding projects that benefit our many great clients and enhance the community in which we live.