Virginia Update: Richmond project adds more residential units

Virginia media outlets reported activity surrounding The Lake, Richmond’s giant wave pool development. The Chesterfield planning commission recommended a few adjustments to the mixed-use development to allow for additional units. Officials want room for 400 more housing units beyond the current 1,190 planned residential units. Homes will be mixed consisting of 830 apartments and 360 townhouses.

The 105-acre property would feature 13- acre lake for water-based activity and then a separate wave pool which could be an American Wave Machines pool. There is no official word on which wave making technology will be used. The wave pool will be twice the size of the one in Waco Texas.

The development would be built at 13400 Genito Road, and 2500, 2601 and 2991 Genito Place.

“The park was really designed to be more of a dry experience than a wet experience,” said Brett Burkhart of Flatwater, the group developing the property. “The wet experience, the surf and the lake, are just the attractions that make it unique.”

American Wave Machines has built two surf parks so far in the US including Waco’s chlorinated kid sister at the American Dream Mall in New Jersey. BSR says rides at their wave pool last between 8-10 seconds. By comparison, current full-size Wavegarden Cove models in Bristol and Melbourne offer 12-16 second rides.

Similar to OceanKamp and DSRTSurf, both in California, The Lake project will create an entire mix-use development around the Richmond wave pool.
In a report by news agency Costar the developers have all the permits approved and plan to break ground as soon as possible.

“We anticipate having towards the end of next year the phase one component in place, which is the big lake and some of the initial restaurants and retail,” Burkhart told Costar. “And then hopefully right around the same time, the surf park will be coming online, if not in the spring of 2022. We’ve set kind of an aggressive timeline, and weather pending, we should be able to meet it.”

Flatwater originally was going to put whitewater rapids at the center of their project. But then when BSR Surf Resort opened in Waco, they realized the potential in a wave pool.

“When they flipped the switch and turned it on, it worked, and it worked fantastically,” Burkhart said. “That was the lightbulb moment.”The development will be constructed on land a half-hour southwest of Richmond city center adjacent to a huge youth sports complex.