NEW ALBANY, OH-Casto officials say they are close to announcing the two anchor tenants for Albany Park, a planned $100-million mixed-use retail development here along Hamilton Road, between State Route 161 and Dublin-Granville Road. The first phase of the project will be a 300,000-sf lifestyle center, with another 200,000 sf of retail, office and possibly a hotel planned for later development.

The project is going up on 300 acres, though the company had to agree not to develop 40 acres of wetlands in order to switch the zoning from industrial to commercial. The zoning was changed last year.

A company spokeswoman tells that leases for the two 100,000-sf anchors are almost signed. She says she couldn’t comment on the names of the anchor stores, or the possible tenants for the rest of the inline space or the 27 out-parcels. “We’re still finalizing things, and we’re definitely still looking for more tenants. We should have the anchors announced in a couple months,” she says. “As construction finishes up on one, phase two’s site work will already be in process. There will be office, but not high rises, and possibly a hotel component. We hope to have the development completed in three-to-five years.” She says she can’t comment on the rumor that Target is one of the anchors that’s in negotiations, though Target officials reportedly confirmed the talks.

The area has seen enormous growth, with the number of households within five miles of the project increasing by 32% since 1990, and a 65% household increase within one mile, according to Casto officials. “We know there’s going to be continued growth there, it’s a main thoroughfare,” the spokeswoman says. The Columbus-based firm owns retail property in more than 90 shopping centers, with more than half of them in Ohio, though the company also owns in Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Alabama, Illinois and Indiana.

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