COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — A surface parking lot Downtown — this time, in the Warehouse District — could be turned into a multi-story apartment building.

Real estate developer Riewald and architect NBBJ have proposed building a seven-story building in place of the parking lot at 281 E. Spring St., according to an application scheduled to appear in front of the Downtown Commission on Tuesday. The commission reviews and OKs project applications for any construction within city limits.

After a conceptual application review at an April commission meeting, Riewald and NBBJ have submitted a more detailed proposal for consideration and a vote on Tuesday.

The first two floors of the building would be a mix of a garage, the lobby, at least one retail unit, and apartment amenities. Floors three through seven would be residential, featuring 131 units ranging from 500 to more than 1,000 square feet, according to the application. 

The proposed apartment building would also feature a third-floor indoor lounge and outdoor deck for residents. 

Nine months into the year, commissioners have heard proposals for mixed-used and residential projects downtown that range from 5 to 19 stories. Some require demolitions, with others taking over surface lots. The rush of applications comes as city leaders push for more density downtown, and more housing across the region. 

Both the central Ohio region and the city itself are on track for substantial population growth — by a million or more residents in the next three decades, according to projections.

That growth has moved quicker than the housing needed to sustain it. A housing needs assessment survey by the Building Industry Association of Central Ohio, released in late 2022, concluded the city would need to nearly double its average number of housing permits to meet projected needs.

“We’re trying to move housing projects, particularly those that have affordability attached to them, as quickly as we can through the process as it currently exists,” Dorans said in an earlier interview. 

The Downtown Commission generally meets the fourth Tuesday of every month at 8:30 a.m.