NEWARK – The deteriorating industrial area on West Main Street has long been a place where people wondered what it was like with hundreds of employees and what it would be like with new activities.
You’ll find out this summer when The Yard at Newark Station opens with four lighted sand volleyball courts, a food truck with a full commercial kitchen, live music, bar, taco service, cornhole, horseshoes and a fire pit in the first phase four – phase, mixed-use development.
The rest of the development plans will be announced at the opening of the outdoor event center on May 28, according to Todd Alexander, president of the Granville-based owner A4 Ragtime Band Development.
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“It’s just a great way to introduce the project to the community and generate interest,” said Alexander. “We thought the opportunity to showcase an outdoor entertainment venue while handling COVID would attract teenagers to the project.” And it’s an easy first step. “
In 1988 Consolidated Industries, the parent company of White-Westinghouse, closed the plant at 325 W. Main St. It had supplied parts for White-Westinghouse appliances such as dishwashers and refrigerators. Much of the site has been empty since then, but Mid-State Warehouse used part of it for storage.
Mid-State sold the 10 acre property from Racoon Creek to 11th Street to A4 Ragtime Band Development in December. A 3 acre lot is for sale on the western edge of the property, however the remaining 7 acres will be part of the Newark Station development.
The volleyball courts are located on the western edge of the 7 hectare property in an open area away from the former factory buildings. The 140,000-square-foot building along West Main Street will be demolished, but the 122,000-square-foot building farther from West Main Street will be part of the development.
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Alexander said there will be on-site events throughout the summer, including for July 4th, as well as an Oktoberfest event and an art show. He said the remaining stages have been set but he plans to make the announcement over Memorial Day weekend.
Brittany Misner, vice president of Licking County’s Chamber of Commerce and treasurer of Licking County’s Young Leaders, said the development had already generated a lot of interest.
“I think people are going to be very excited to have something unique in Licking County,” Misner said. Hope it gets pulled off campus.
“Young people are looking for experience. This is an all-round experience – dining, relaxation, entertainment. I can definitely see several future Young Leaders events there. “
Nathan Arnold, President of Young Leaders of Licking County, said, “I am definitely looking forward to the project. It’s an area in Newark that definitely needs redevelopment. I hope the development will have food trucks and outdoor concerts because that’s what our county lacks. “
Recreational and competitive summer volleyball leagues begin May 31. Each league consists of 16 teams with six players each. Tournaments take place on weekends. Log in or register a team at www.newark-station.com. Space is limited.
Twitter: @ kmallett1958