CRRA held its groundbreaking for its new headquarters, which will be built on land adjacent to its current building in Midtown, on March 21. The new building will be approximately 58,000 square feet with 2,100 square feet of retail and 7,000 square feet of leasable space. The new headquarters also features a new convenience – a 71,000 square foot parking deck – that will accommodate 214 vehicles for use by members, students and visitors.
CRRA’s new headquarters will also house the Carolina Multiple Listing Services, Inc. (CarolinaMLS), Mingle School of Real Estate and the Housing Opportunity Foundation. It will be ideally situated across from Pearl Park and offer members and visitors a place to gather and enjoy a walkable, pedestrian-friendly environment.
Since 1993, CRRA has made strategic investments, including purchasing land and buildings along Harding and Greenwood Cliff. In July 2012, the CRRA Board of Directors appointed the Greenwood Cliff Task Force to examine current facilities and the investment needed to make necessary improvements and determine a path forward. Their charge was to maximize the use of the campus and ensure that CRRA remains financially stable and viable to its members.
In 2014, the CRRA Board of Directors, based on recommendations from the Task Force’s Feasibility Study, voted for the association to remain on the Greenwood Cliff site, build a new building and parking deck and sell the remaining property.
CRRA went to work to find a developer who would purchase and develop the 5.2-acre site. In March 2015, the board voted to sell the property to Pappas Properties, and in October a purchase agreement for $20.1 million was signed between CRRA and Pappas. The agreement allowed CRRA to remain in its current building with a guaranteed number of parking spaces during construction.
Selwyn Property Group was engaged to provide consulting services to the association during the planning and pre-development process. In 2016, Little Diversified Architectural Consulting was hired to help create CRRA’s vision and establish design drivers in order to build a new headquarters that was not only iconic for the industry, but would serve as a beacon for real estate education and create an environment that supports members and enhances their experience.
Most of 2017 focused on working with Little to determine space requirements and select a contractor; CRRA selected Myers & Chapman. Little conducted a visioning session and meetings were held to finalize design of the building and interior. “We’re looking forward to opening our new headquarters in early 2019 and to deliver on the promise we made to our members,” said Jason Gentry, 2018 CRRA/CarolinaMLS President “To have a building that is welcoming, where members have access to state-of-the-art technology and training, education and professional development that is delivered in a collaborative and innovative environment.” Gentry adds, “Equally important is our commitment to the community and our public and private sector partners. We want to serve as the front door to the community by offering a location to connect and work on critical issues such as safe, affordable housing through the Housing Opportunity Foundation. Our goal is to ensure that our region remains a great place to live and have a home.”