NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — A portion of more than 100,000-square-feet of empty lots and warehouses are now thriving businesses at the Railyard at Lambert’s Point.
The area is filled with entertainment, restaurants and more.
Located along Hampton Boulevard, the space is between Old Dominion University, Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters, Eastern Virginia Medical School, Sentara Health and Naval Station Norfolk.
Although construction was still underway for the bulk of the project Friday afternoon, many businesses are already a part of the community, including Afterglow Brewery.
Owner Josh Evans said it’s the first and only location for his business after opening eight weeks prior.
He told 10 On Your Side why he chose the Railyard to open up shop.
“It was an empty warehouse,” Evans said. “The backyard was just dirt and not much grass and so I saw a lot of potential. We opened up that weekend after 4th of July. It was great. We had cars that were four blocks down the street here. It was amazing.”
He said the amount of space allowed him to turn his brewery into what it is now.
“We put a sandbox in, or a giant connect four or a foosball table,” Evans said. “We see so many families who are like, ‘Thank you for doing this,’ and that makes me feel great at the end of the day.”
He said the brewery’s location close to ODU is mirrored in how he runs his place.
“We do college football, a lot of the ODU games,” Evans said. “We’re big supporters of ODU. We really like to support them. We’re right around the corner.”
Evans wasn’t the only business owner to be enticed by the square footage.
Trey Hannah is the owner of Sanctuary DMZ right next to Afterglow. The taco restaurant has local hot sauce, a wall of art that gets switched in and out periodically, and more.
The business has another restaurant location in the Neon District, but the amount of people that location can fit pales in comparison to his restaurant at the Railyard.
“The other location only has an occupancy of like 58 and this one’s 150,” Hannah said. “We have a much larger outdoor patio, and the tall ceilings are definitely attractive and just more opportunity — larger kitchen.”
But that’s not the only thing that has contributed to Sanctuary having great business.
“The brewery opening has been a major boost to us,” Hannah said, “even when they have food trucks. They have food trucks on the weekend when they expect a lot of people and have a lot of events, and we’ll still have sometimes a 45 minute to an hour wait for tacos because there’s so many people here.”
The overall project for the Railyard is a joint development between the Local Meredith family and CCB Railyard LLC.
10 On Your Side reached out to see what other businesses plan to open up in the space, but we haven’t gotten a reply.