Imagine watching from the comfort of your office as an eagle soars over sparkling mountain waters while you prepare for your video conference on a secure fiber internet connection. Or envision having a walking meeting with your team or client, strolling the more than 3 miles of trail that begins outside the office doors and winds around a 200-acre lake before enjoying lunch on the private patio.
A few select tenants will have this experience when over 1,700 square feet of newly renovated Class A office space becomes available in The Foundation for Evangelism’s building at Lake Junaluska. Construction in the new space—both finished and prepped for build-to-suit tenant specifications—wrapped up in early May and is actively leasing.
“With the beautiful lake views, walking trails, and more, we think that as COVID restrictions continue to lighten, professional services will want their offices in more remote areas of the state,” said Mack King. King serves as the senior broker at Wesley Community Development and is a member of the team tapped to consult with the Foundation on their vision for the space.
“We offer connection to a technology backbone and uninterrupted power supply that is rarely seen west of Asheville and rarely available to small business,” said Barby Bowser, the Foundation’s executive assistant and communications manager, who has worked in the building since it opened in 2005.
Looking to their ministry’s future, the Foundation designed and built a global headquarters to support web design and hosting for faith-based organizations in the early internet days. Some 15 years later, they are welcoming companies and workers leveraging the potential of cloud computing and remote workspaces into this tech-ready environment.
The Foundation’s board and its president, Jane Boatwright Wood, invited Wesley Community Development to partner on the project. Wood states, “As a Foundation, we have a calling to be a catalyst for innovation and transformation. Using our building to equip small businesses and satellite offices in Western North Carolina to do their work in a technology-rich, nature-blessed setting is a plan we’ve been developing over the last few years and are excited to launch.”
Those whose work complements the Foundation, such as financial, legal, or estate-planning sectors and non-profit organizations, will be a good fit for the newly renovated space. Professional services like architects, engineers, or real estate agencies would also benefit from the location. Clients of these small businesses would enjoy the convenience of easy access off a major highway, ample parking, handicap accessible entry, and the serene setting.
“We analyzed office trends against use and expense figures provided by the Foundation. Based on that information, we determined that redeveloping the existing floorplan into Class A office space was the best use for the building while helping to bolster the Foundation’s ministry,” said King of Wesley CDC.
Wesley CDC, a non-profit real estate firm created in 2002 by a $2 million grant from The Duke Endowment, is affiliated with the Western North Carolina Conference of The United Methodist Church and works with churches of all denominations to assess their properties. It has developed more than $74 million in real estate by the end of 2020.