As the W.C. Bradley Company works to complete The Rapids, an upscale apartment complex in downtown Columbus that will have restaurants and retail tenants, it’s also planning another food-based attraction just to the south off Bay Avenue.
It will be an indoor food venue carved out of what decades ago was a warehouse dedicated to storing cotton for transport down the Chattahoochee River via steamships. A historic textile mill, the Eagle & Phenix, also is in the vicinity, it now having been transformed by W.C. Bradley into modern condos and apartments.
“We have a building back there that we are in the very early stages of trying to design a pretty interesting dining concept,” Pace Halter, president of W.C. Bradley’s Real Estate Division, said Monday of the indoor food court on Bay Avenue.
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The actual location is between the existing 11th and Bay Southern Table restaurant and Whitewater Express, an outdoor rafting and zip-line company that does business on and above the river. It’s situated across from Woodruff Riverfront Park, which is popular year-round with local residents and visitors walking, bicycling and simply hanging out in the area, which includes a children’s playground and splash pad.
“It’s part of the warehouse there,” Halter said. “Technically, in the strictest sense, it’s part of this building, our corporate building, but it’s back behind us here in the lower area.”
The W.C. Bradley executive said the timeline for opening the indoor food venue is a bit fuzzy, with the company still going through its budget estimates for the attraction. His goal is to get started on construction early next year and open by late spring or early summer.
“The current design right now is we’ve got 11 food booths in there,” Halter said. “They may not all be food. There may be some that are more passive dry goods and stuff like that. We really haven’t even started tenanting it yet or even marketing it for that matter.”
There is definite interest, however, with the owners of Trevioli Italian Kitchen in north Columbus wanting to be a part of the food court. Specifically, businessman Sanjay Choudhury and his partner, chef Trevor Morris, want to sell pizza at the location.
The two restaurateurs also are planning a major leap into the downtown area, with plans to open a second Trevioli full-service restaurant in The Rapids, which is just south of the TSYS corporate headquarters and Frank K. Martin Pedestrian Bridge that connects Columbus and Phenix City.