Park Lane's first building is the 'highly amenitized' Avant.
A decade after the landmark Reno shopping mall was razed to the ground, Park Lane is poised to take the next step in its rebirth as construction nears on its first building.

Park Lane's first building will be a five-story, residential complex named "Avant," said Chip Bowlby, managing partner for developer Reno Land Development. Plans for Avant are already finalized. Construction on the building will start as soon as the developer receives its building permit.

Work on the first building hinged on the completion of the site's preliminary infrastructure. A large piece of that involved replacing aging sewer lines, Bowlby said. In 2016, the city of Reno approved a $3.5 million subsidy for the Park Lane project to address the 50-year-old infrastructure.

The "Avant" building will feature a wrap design that moves the parking lot away from the development's peripheral area and puts it in the middle where it is surrounded by buildings instead. This hides the parking lot from the main roads and makes the building look more prominent from the streets. The design was inspired by the upscale Santana Row retail district in San Jose, California.

The first of eight residential buildings planned for the Park Lane project, Avant will be located on the corner of Kirman Avenue and Apple Street, just on the northwest edge of the Century Park Lane theater. It will feature 227 residential apartment units ranging from 545 square feet to 1,345 square feet. Units will include single-family studios and up to three-bedroom apartments.

Avant's construction will be quickly followed by three more structures, tentatively designated as buildings 4A, 4B and 4C, on the south end of Park Lane facing Grove Street. Those three buildings are planned to have about 300 units total of apartments, including smaller studios geared toward millennials.

All residential buildings will be "heavily amenitized ," Bowlby said. Site plans for the building show several fitness rooms, a club room and pool.  A 1.3-acre park also will be constructed just south of the Avant building, placing it right in front of the movie theater. The developer plans to have restaurants, dog parks and music on the park green. The park could potentially include an outdoor theater as well, Bowlby said.

Reno Land Development is eyeing anywhere between 1,450 to 1,690 units total for the eight residential buildings it plans to build. Additional housing inventory can't come soon enough for Reno, which is in the middle of a severe housing crunch driven by growth, short supply and rising house prices. 

In addition to its eight residential buildings, Park Lane also plans to have several commercial facilities on site. These include a 175-unit boutique hotel, Bowlby said. Between 44,000 square feet to 55,000 square feet of retail space is also planned.

The plans mark a big turnaround for Park Lane, which first opened in 1967 and was one of the first modern shopping malls in the Biggest Little City. After falling on hard times, however, the property has remained vacant for a decade. The property's sale to Reno Land Development closed on September 2016, kicking off the site's rebirth.
Kelly Richmond