Wellness centers are the new golf course retirement community

For many years, residential developments have been constructed round hobbies. There are the Southern California residence buildings with a pool in the courtyard, the Rocky Mountain getaways with ski-up connections to mountain lifts, and maybe most ubiquitously, the retirement communities constructed round golf programs.

Developer Brett Kaufman is aware of these sorts of facilities work to attract in residents and tenants. That’s why he’s constructed a new challenge in Columbus, Ohio, with a selected form of way of life in thoughts. Kaufman’s challenge is Gravity, a mixed-use community of residences, workplaces, and retail with an emphasis on psychological well being and wellness. There’s a transcendental meditation studio, a yoga studio, on-site psychological well being providers, and areas for remedy classes. He calls it a “aware community.”

[Photo: courtesy Gravity]

“When you consider a golf course community, there’s a sure lifestyle that individuals are selecting. And I feel that’s precisely what is going on at Gravity,” Kaufman says. “They’re selecting to be in an atmosphere the place there’s exercise and like-minded individuals and a basic vibe and ambiance that they need to be part of.”

The concept for Gravity got here partly from Kaufman’s personal experiences with meditation, however largely from a frustration with the 15 years he’d spent working for a giant housing developer. “I discovered myself fairly sad, fairly unfulfilled with my work,” he says. He launched his personal improvement firm in 2011, “with the concept that I can deliver the issues that I used to be captivated with in my life into my work, and I may create an organization that might appeal to others that shared that want,” he says.


After a sequence of smaller developments in his hometown of Columbus, Kaufman started planning Gravity as the actual property embodiment of a life-style centered on inside connectedness and psychological well-being.

The primary accomplished part of Gravity contains 234 rental flats priced at market and inexpensive rents, 50,000 sq. toes of workplaces, and 30,000 sq. toes of floor ground retail, along with the on-site wellness facilities and an occasion venue that hosts audio system and festivals.

[Photo: courtesy Gravity]

Kaufman is now increasing the challenge’s footprint, and aiming to develop it right into a community with 1000’s of residents. A $120 million part two is underneath building, and can embody about 25 extra residential items in a 12-story constructing, cohousing choices, townhouses, and 185,000 sq. toes of further retail house. Murals and artwork are built-in all through the challenge. Kaufman says the retail make-up shall be extremely curated to prioritize community-oriented companies. Present tenants embody the nonprofit Roosevelt Coffeehouse, which helps efforts to finish starvation, unclean water, and human trafficking. One other tenant is Pelotonia, a company that runs most cancers analysis fundraising campaigns by way of bicycle races.

Exterior of Gravity’s wellness-oriented grounds, of course, is the remainder of Columbus, Ohio, the place the poverty fee is about 20%. Gravity is positioned in a downtown-adjacent community referred to as Franklinton, certainly one of the metropolis’s oldest neighborhoods. Lengthy a working-class space, the neighborhood has struggled with vacant properties, crime, and drug points lately, and some residents worry {that a} challenge like Gravity will push costs up and lower-income residents out.

To scale back the threat of Gravity changing into a homogenous zone of yoga practitioners, Kaufman’s firm partnered with the nonprofit housing developer Homeport to construct a 50-unit inexpensive housing improvement inside the website, which shall be out there to these making 60% of the space median revenue. In the subsequent part of the improvement, a coliving facility can have rents far beneath market fee, in line with Kaufman.

[Photo: courtesy Gravity]

Kaufman understands that phrases like wellness and mindfulness enchantment to a sure demographic. They will additionally sound like actual property buzzwords, however he insists that Gravity is a honest effort to supply this style of facilities to individuals in Columbus.

“After I first began in the enterprise, no person was speaking about wellness or meditation, yoga, composting, and a number of these items. Even artwork. That wasn’t actually a factor in the actual property world. It’s now. And you recognize what, that’s a superb factor,” he says. “If extra individuals really feel like they should get on the wellness bandwagon and do one thing to be aggressive, nice.”


Gravity, Kaufman concedes, is a little bit of an island in Columbus, providing way of life facilities individuals may affiliate extra with California than Ohio. “What we’ve tried to do is admittedly combination these like-minded individuals, those that have been doing the work on this lane and pull all of them collectively right into a community, that you just don’t should journey to California to expertise,” he says. “You may have that and stay in Columbus, Ohio.”

Kaufman sees the challenge as providing another—a new choice for individuals in Columbus, and in addition a new mind-set about what one of these improvement can do.

“We’re aiming, finally, at creating environments and experiences for our residents and tenants and anyone who engages in the community to have the ability to develop, to have the ability to be taught, to have the ability to join, to collaborate, to seek out methods to only really feel higher and perhaps enhance their lives,” he says.