Columbus land developer Charlie Ruma has revealed more details regarding the redevelopment of the Riviera Golf Club property off Avery Road in Dublin, including his hope the subdivision could host the Building Industry Association of Central Ohio’s Parade of Homes in 2017.
I wrote Wednesday about the sale of the Riviera course to Riviera Ventures LLC, a joint venture between Ruma’s Davidson Phillips Inc. development business and Columbus-based homebuilder M/I Homes Inc. (NYSE:MHO).
“I’m still part of the deal and I will be the whole way through,” Ruma told me. “It’s been a joint venture all along.”
I haven’t heard back from M/I since I broke the story of the land sale but Ruma told me the breakdown of the division of the 185 lots planned on 152 acres. Davidson Phillips will get 40 lots for custom homes as part of the joint venture agreement, while M/I Homes will get 119 for construction of single-family homes and 26 for patio homes targeting the empty-nest market of older adults without children at home.
“My phone has been ringing off the hook,” Ruma said of the interest he’s received from homebuilders for his share of the lots. “There will be a lot of competition for (home) lots.”
He expects Virginia Homes, an affiliated homebuilder run by Ruma’s son Charles Ruma, to buy about 10 lots.
“It depends upon what Charles wants to do,” the elder Ruma said.
He told me his cut of the lots and share of the joint venture fell dramatically when opposition from residents in neighboring subdivisions to the initial 284-lot plan prompted the developer to reduce the housing density through the creation of parkland in the center of the 45-year-old golf course and other open spaces.
Still, Ruma said he has no regrets with his one-quarter share.
“It’s good for M/I,” he told me, “and it’s good for us.”
Regarding the possibility of a Parade of Homes at Riviera – Ruma told me that depends in large part on whether those in neighboring subdivisions, such as M/I Homes’ Belvedere community immediately south of Riviera, and the city welcome the subdivision hosting the annual showcase of upscale homes. It will also depend on whether the developers can get enough lots ready in time for builders to start on construction next fall.
“I don’t know whether we’ll have a Parade of Homes or not,” Ruma said. “But we’re looking into that.”
Meantime, Ruma said he hopes to file a final plat, or specific road and lot plan, for the land by the end of October and receive city clearance in early 2016. That approval will prompt the construction of roads and utilities through the site next spring.