The YMCA of Northwest North Carolina has signed a 10,000-square-foot lease agreement to open an express branch in Wake Forest Innovation Quarter, the fast emerging hub for innovation in biomedical science and information technology. The new Express Y facility will be located in the recently announced 525@Vine building and supports Wake Forest Innovation Quarter’s mission of becoming a place where people work, live, learn and play by adding recreational and exercise program offerings.
“The addition of the Y to Wake Forest Innovation Quarter advances our evolution of creating a dynamic epicenter of commerce and culture by providing services to support work-life balance and healthful living,” said Eric Tomlinson, D.Sc., Ph.D., president of Wake Forest Innovation Quarter. “Along with our Bailey Park yoga series and social networking events, we are offering people throughout the city a place to connect recreationally as well as for business.”
Conveniently located for those who work in and live near Wake Forest Innovation Quarter, the new Express Y will open in spring 2014 offering two group exercise rooms, a comprehensive wellness center and locker rooms. Express Y memberships will be open to the public and the facility will also welcome members of other Northwest North Carolina YMCA branches with metro level memberships.
Curt Hazelbaker, president and CEO of the YMCA of Northwest North Carolina, said the Y was attracted to the “energy” in Wake Forest Innovation Quarter. “Everything from the existing businesses, to the future occupants, to the residential component make Wake Forest Innovation Quarter a vibrant part of downtown, and we are excited to be a part of it.” The new Express Y will be the third of its kind in the YMCA of Northwest North Carolina’s association.
The Y is the newest business to score space in Wake Forest Innovation Quarter’s 525@Vine building that is currently undergoing renovations and is scheduled for completion in spring 2014, according to Dan Cramer, senior vice president of Wexford Science & Technology of Baltimore, which owns the building. Wexford is spending $150 million to renovate 473,000 square feet of space in two former “90 series” R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company buildings now known in Wake Forest Innovation Quarter as 525@Vine and the Inmar Headquarters. The development project is one of the largest investments in downtown history.