The big baseball game that will open High Point’s brand new downtown stadium isn’t until Thursday, May 2 – however, on Tuesday, April 30, there was a lot of excitement among High Point officials thanks to an announcement that only came about due to the stadium’s existence.

Elliott Sidewalk Communities, the “master developer” overseeing most of the downtown development for the city, announced the first tenant for a key building going up at 275 N. Elm St. next to the stadium.

Maryland-based Cana Development is bringing a large eatery area to the first floor of that building.  Cana will occupy about one-third of the mixed-use structure that will be three-stories when complete.  Cana will use the first-floor space to house diverse, upscale dining in what’s being billed as a “food hall.”

Plans are for the top two floors of the building to be used as office space.

Project developers expect the building at 275 N. Elm St. to be finished by July 2020.  It will be a key part of “The Outfields” development next to new BB&T Point stadium. That development, which is, as the name suggests, in close proximity to the stadium’s outfield, will include a hotel, apartments, offices, shops and a grand plaza.

High Point Economic Development Corp. President Loren Hill said on Tuesday that this is a very exciting announcement due to the reputation for quality that Cana brings to the table.  Hill said the coming “food hall” will be a far cry from a typical “food court” one sees in a mall.

“This is much more interesting,” Hill said. “It’s not national chains.”

According to Hill, plans are for the dining in the food hall to be high quality and unique.  Some vendors, for instance, will sell locally grown food prepared by area chefs.

Hill added that the food hall will provide destination dining.

“It will be something that people drive from Greensboro or Winston-Salem for,” Hill said,

Hill was in an unusual position on Tuesday.  Usually, he’s the one who’s in charge of making key economic development announcements in High Point; however, in this case, the rollout was being handled by Elliot Sidewalk Communities and Hill wasn’t aware of the name of the company until the announcement was made.

Hill said that once he heard the news – at the same time everyone else did – he started googling the company and looking at the work that they’ve done in the past and he was delighted with what he discovered.

“They know how to bring interesting projects in,” Hill said.

Most Cana projects are in larger cities like Baltimore and Philadelphia and Hill said it’s great that High Point will now be in such fine company.