Dominion Energy office tower, parking deck to be turned into 600 apartments

A developer is planning 300 apartments to rise atop this parking deck as well as in Dominion Energy’s office building on East Main. (Mike Platania photos)

A local developer has big plans for two Dominion Energy-owned properties downtown.

Genesis Properties is under contract to purchase Dominion’s 20-story Eighth & Main office building as well as a nearby parking deck at 620 E. Cary St., and convert the properties into 600 new apartments.

According to documents filed with the city last week, Genesis is planning to convert the existing office building on East Main into 300 apartments, while building a high-rise apartment building atop the current three-level parking deck on East Cary that would house an additional 300 units. Each project also has the potential to have ground-floor commercial space.

A view of the Eighth and Main office building from the parking deck that’s also set to be sold.

Genesis Director of Development Ed Solarz and Dominion representatives each confirmed that the land is under contract to be sold. Solarz declined to comment further.

Dominion spokesman Ryan Frazier said the company, as well as other office tenants, will continue to have people working in the Eighth and Main office building for the next four months or so.

The two properties were most recently assessed at a combined $37.6 million, made up mainly by the Eighth & Main office building’s value of $35.1 million.

Genesis wrote in city documents that an engineer has told the firm that building a high-rise apartment atop the parking deck is possible.

The projects would be among the largest that Manchester-based Genesis has taken on yet. Its other recent work includes the renovations of the Holly Springs Apartments in Manchester and Bellevue Apartments in Northside. Founded by Ron Hunt in 1985, Genesis Properties often includes income-based units in its projects.

For Dominion, the pending sales are a further sign of the energy giant’s desire to shed its excess downtown real estate. Last summer it listed nearly 5 acres along Grayland Avenue in the Fan for sale, then earlier this year it issued a request-for-proposals for an entire city block it owns at 701 E. Cary St. Frazier said Dominion has not yet selected a winner among RFP respondents. The company put the Eighth and Main tower on the market last fall.

The sites Genesis is set to acquire are in a part of downtown that’s seen its share of construction and development in recent years.

Dominion Energy also recently issued an RFP for the site that would have housed its twin office tower.

The parking deck along East Cary Street is directly across the street from 600 Canal Place, Dominion’s glass-façade office tower that it completed in 2019, while the Eighth and Main office building is adjacent to the future home of an approximately 13-story office building that’s going to replace the state’s 26-story Monroe Building.

Douglas Development is putting the finishing touches on its conversion of the former Virginia Department of Environmental Quality building into 189 apartments nearby at 629 E. Main St., while just to the east is where Landmark Property Services and The Wilton Cos. are working on converting the Mutual Building at 909 E. Main St. into 170 apartments. A few blocks south across the expressway, CoStar Group is preparing to break ground on a nearly half-billion-dollar office complex at 600 Tredegar St.

Dominion Energy office tower, parking deck to be turned into 600 apartments