Redevelopment Brings New Life to Charlotte Properties


ATCO Properties located in Charlotte recently purchased 75 acres last year for $13.5 million. The plan is to adaptively reuse the buildings there for office space, a film studio, apartments, hotels, and production plants. Henry Ford used to build Model T’s in one of the plants acquired in the purchase. It was also once used to build missiles. The plan is to install new businesses in over 1.2 million square feet of vacant warehouse. The plan is to be developed in stages.

This plan helps alleviate some of the environmental concerns by reusing spaces that are already zoned for commerce. Preserving the local ecosystems and waterways is crucial. By effectively recycling older businesses, we conserve resources, time, and the precious ecosystems.

Another company in Charlotte, Edifice, relocated to a former airplane hangar. The 1.7 acre lot was purchased in January for $1.4 million. The 20,000 square feet of space took six months to prepare for business. Axiom Architecture designed the exterior, and the interior was designed by Redline Design Group. Dragonfly Studios supplied interior reclaimed-wood details. The address was incorporated in the architecture design along with multi-colored glass. It now staffs about 45 people. The owners chose the building because of the proximity to the older location. The firm is working on another restoration project in north Charlotte, and renovating East Mecklenburg High School.

The idea was to give more space for each employee. There is about 250 square feet per employee. The building also makes use of more open spaces and collaborative meeting rooms.

This trend is becoming popular not just in United States, but around the world.

Australian businesses are also making new use of older spaces. Commercial property investor Fivex refurbished a 19th-century post office in Sydney. The $5 million dollar project is now a mixed development commercial, retail, and residential area. They upgraded the outside and added a built on four story building which includes six luxury apartments. A bank occupies the space, and a hair salon rents the upper floor. They preserved the timber staircase in the adaptive reuse project. Maintaining historic buildings and using them for modern businesses is an example of sustainability in big cities.

Australia has strong winds across the whole coast, and often businesses use cyclonic buildings alongside hangars or warehouses because they are easy to build and take down. Reuse of older spaces is typical of this culture.

Another restoration project is to redevelop a bank building into a restaurant with a retractable roof. The playful mix of modern design with classic buildings inspires architects to be imaginative and resourceful. The team plans on maximizing outdoor seating space by making use of the roof. They plan on adding a second staircase to accommodate more traffic.

In Ireland, a Belfast cinema is set to be redeveloped. The cinema will be incorporated into the new office buildings. Recently The Richland Group built new apartment buildings near the site. They are targeting younger people looking to invest in properties. About 100 construction jobs will be created, and at the end of the project the buildings will employ about 450 workers.



I am a former real estate agent, currently living in Charlotte. I've spent decades in Chicago working, but I have decided to return to my home city. Nowadays I mostly write about things related to real estate market in general and relevant fields.