Local investor announces new project in Radcliff | Local News
A planned development that never saw its vision fully realized takes on new life at Radcliff.
The former Hardin Mall property, which once housed the Sears Outlet Store and now the Dollar General, is part of local businessman Mafaz Ansar’s plan to redevelop this southern part of town. The development will be known as Ansar Plaza.
“I never planned on doing what I do,” he said, of investing in real estate to redevelop. “I wanted to do something different.”
Since beginning its investment journey in 2014 in Glasgow, Ansar said it has rehabilitated 11 or 12 properties, investments it considered rough diamonds, throughout central Kentucky.
“I think I’ve always had this interest in taking things that weren’t going so well and trying to reshape them and move them forward,” he said. “I was lucky for that.”
Once slated for a mall development, of which the Sears Outlet Store was the potential anchor, the previous owner never realized the property’s potential with a competitor developing Towne Mall in Elizabethtown at the same time, a said Jeff Farmer, Commercial Realtor for Semonin Realtors.
According to Farmer, he had been marketing the property and its 30 acres for about three years before Ansar showed interest.
Ansar and Farmer renegotiated Dollar General’s lease through 2029 for its 10,000 square feet and secured Ace Hardware as the tenant to fill 11,000 square feet of the 31,000 square foot building.
Ansar said Ace Hardware is working on opening in November or December.
After the renovations, this building will also have two bespoke spaces, on a flexible 7,000 square foot space with loading dock and another 2,500 square foot space, which was the former home of the Hardin County Playhouse, said Ansar.
Ansar also plans to construct another 24,000 square foot building on the site which will contain 8,000 square feet of space for Workout Anytime 24/7 and room for two other tenants.
Farmer said interest in the spaces was expressed by a martial arts group looking to expand to the area and others.
“I think when we inaugurate the pitch, that’s when (the interest) will really start,” he said.
As part of the further development of the property, Ansar said it is working with a few hotel chains to build on the site and the property will have room for restaurants on plots closest to US 31W.
One plot, which is not owned by Ansar, is under contract with Jason and Amber Grimm and their partner Robert VanBuskirk, for a Dairy Queen location.
Formerly on the site of Mexican restaurant Las Margarita, which burned down in 2017, the new Dairy Queen will be the group’s third location in Hardin County.
“We are excited to bring our delicious treats to Radcliff, including our great breakfast menu for early morning travelers along Dixie Highway,” Jason Grimm said in a press release announcing the development.
Ansar also plans to repair the current parking lot.
“We have been working on this property since May,” he said.
The development’s name, Ansar Plaza, was the brainchild of Ansar’s wife, Tiffany. After researching the name, she discovered that it means help.
Farmer said the name was fitting for Ansar’s new project because in previous Ansar efforts, he had rehabilitated properties for the benefit of the surrounding neighborhood.
“The nice thing is that the name means help, that’s really what drives him a lot,” Farmer said. “It’s not so much money, it’s helping the community and helping the people around it.”
Rehabilitating the property is something Radcliff Mayor JJ Duvall has said is a welcome investment.
“Obviously this property in its original form was the old Sears building, but over the years the property and the land next to it haven’t seen the opportunities they really should have,” he said. he declares. “The fact that he wants to clean it up and turn it into a vibrant property will help restore some of the life.”
By bringing in new tenants and developing the outer lots as planned by Ansar, Duvall said he will bring traffic and growth to this area of town, which has seen growth near the intersection with Ky. 313, where the tourist sites Boundary Oak Distillery and Red Hill Cutlery and hotels and restaurants reside.
“We are happy that someone took an interest in this property,” he said of Ansar. “He was willing to take the risk and see the potential in the property.”
It was a risk Ansar said was worth taking and has taken, albeit on a smaller scale, before.
“That’s what makes me different,” he said. “If you go to the place everyone is talking about, it’s going to be expensive and there’s going to be a lot of competition. I want to be where I’m going to shine and everyone’s going to pay attention.
Ansar said it was better able to gain support for its projects this way.
“Radcliff has great potential,” he said. “It’s very close to (Fort Knox) and they have things to do. It will be the future.
“Radcliff is growing and E’town is growing,” he added. “Now it’s the turn of this property. I want to do something different. This is my dream. This is going to be my greatest thing.