WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (BCBSNC) will help turn two former R.J. Reynolds Tobacco warehouses into state-of-the-art research labs, retail and office space in downtown Winston-Salem. BCBSNC’s investment through the North Carolina Mill Rehabilitation Tax Credits program will enable Wexford Science & Technology, LLC to develop the buildings known as the 91 Buildings in the North District of the Piedmont-Triad Research Park.
“This investment by Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina will enable us to preserve a former manufacturing area in the heart of downtown Winston Salem,” said Doug Edgeton, president, Piedmont Triad Research Park (PTRP). “The State Mill Tax Credit program is a very effective tool for sustainable redevelopment and provides tremendous benefits to the local economy. PTRP is very excited about Wexford’s redevelopment of the R.J. Reynolds 91 Buildings, which is the first step towards a transformation of the park’s North District.”
The 91 Buildings, located at 6th Street and Patterson Street in Winston-Salem, will become a medical laboratory and research facility. Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center researchers will occupy the labs, which will be known as Wake Forest BioTech Place. Future plans for PTRP include additional warehouse renovations into a vibrant urban community that includes green spaces, recreational trails, mixed-use spaces, student/graduate housing, offices and retail.
“Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina has a 77 year tradition of investing in the health of North Carolinians,” said Brad Wilson, president and CEO. “We are pleased to continue that tradition with this investment which creates new medical research labs from historic tobacco warehouses. You could say we’re preserving the past while creating a new future for this part of the Triad."
The 91 Buildings are a five-story structure, clad with architecturally significant glass block attached to a three-story unit constructed of concrete and brick. Wexford has already begun construction, renovating the building’s interiors, adding new windows and an interior 7,500 square foot atrium and raising one of the floors to create the lab spaces that will make this project both unique and historically significant. Additionally, Wexford will pursue a minimum of LEED Silver designation for the 91 Buildings and PTRP has adopted Sustainable Development Guidelines for the entire park, based on the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED ND ratings.
BCBSNC’s investment in the North Carolina Mill Rehabilitation Tax Credits program will enable Wexford Science & Technology, LLC to develop the buildings known as the 91 Buildings in the North District of the Piedmont-Triad Research Park. This was made possible through the Foss N.C. Mill Credit 2011 Fund I LLC, sponsored by Foss and Company Inc. of San Francisco, CA.
About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina:
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina is a leader in delivering innovative health care products, services and information to more than 3.7 million members, including approximately 900,000 served on behalf of other Blue Plans. For 77 years, the company has served its customers by offering health insurance at a competitive price and has served the people of North Carolina through support of community organizations, programs and events that promote good health. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Access BCBSNC online at bcbsnc.com.