Development of Oxford’s newest shopping center is well underway. The first phase of The Sansing at Oxford Commons is scheduled to be completed in March 2017. With 15,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space, the development is set to serve what developer Blake Tartt sees as an “underserved” area of Oxford.
The Sansing will feature a brand new restaurant by the name of Southern Craft. Owned and operated by Griffin Tanner, owner of the Round Table, the restaurant’s menu will consist of everything from craft beers and steaks to wine and high-end salads. Originally the development was set to have a Fuddruckers, but Tartt decided against the burger chain in the interest of giving the people of Oxford a restaurant with a local flavor.
“I really wanted to support local business, and Southern Craft was a better option to show that support,” Tartt said. “We’re excited about Southern Craft, as well as Freshii, who we just signed a deal with.”
A high-end, boutique/retail style apartment complex is set to be built in the next phase of development at The Sansing, but has been placed on hold for the time being due to a moratorium period placed on construction on Sisk Ave. The hold is due to “the overburdened intersection of Sisk with Hwy 7,” according to director of planning Judy Daniel. City Engineer Bart Robinson hopes that a resolution can be agreed upon, and is most concerned with the safety of Oxford citizens.
“Obviously, the sooner the better. We are hoping to find a resolution to the problem through a TIF Bond. Currently, the timeline depends on developers providing a development agreement that with terms the Board of Aldermen will approve. The resolution will increase capacity and decrease safety concerns at the intersection of Highway 7 and Sisk Avenue.”
While his development has been placed on hold, Tartt agrees with the reasoning behind it and appreciates the way the city has handled the challenging situation.
“The city has been great to work with, and I think they are doing the right thing. They have issues out there, and it’s great that they’re dealing with them before more construction will take place,” Tartt said. “I do business in a lot of cities, and Oxford has been the best city to deal with in this type of situation.”
The apartment building will be unique in the fact that it will not be open to students. A 21-and-up age limit will be placed on the units in an effort to serve the growing young professional population in Oxford.
“We’re doing something completely unfocused on students. There’s a lack of class-A, multi-family units for young professionals, and this apartment complex will help serve that need,” Tartt said.
Construction on the second phase is dependent on a resolution between the planning department, MDOT, and the Mayor. Once a resolution is found, Tartt noted that construction on the apartments should take around 12 months. Several retailers have already begun the process of joining the development, according to Tartt.
Steven Gagliano is a writer for HottyToddy.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.