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Renderings of proposed Greensboro tower

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Triad Tower will be located at the intersection of I-40 and Hwy 68 (I-73) near Piedmont Triad International Airport in Greensboro. Currently the tower is proposed to be 14-stories but if interest is high, the tower could be 25-stories making it the tallest suburban office tower in the Carolinas. The tower will include ammenities such as a ground level helipad, penthouse restaurant and observation deck, floor to ceiling aquariums lining the main lobby, a large indoor exotic fish pond, underground parking and pedestrian tunnel connect to other nearby buildings. The tower is expect to be complete by 2007 but construction could start as early as next summer.

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The tower will be located behind the building on the far left side of the photo. The tallest building to the far right is the 7-story Embassy Suites Hotel.

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Swanky Greensboro high-rise offices near PTI on drawing board

7-14-04

By Nate DeGraff Staff Writer

News & Record

GREENSBORO — A local conglomerate plans to build a high-rise office tower near Piedmont Triad International Airport, apparently confident that swanky amenities will reel in tenants in a soft office market.

If built, the Triad Tower would dramatically alter a west Greensboro landscape chock full of hotels and low-rise office parks. Plans show the 14-story, 221-foot-tall tower on Triad Center Drive, just northwest of the Interstate 40 and N.C. 68 interchange, according to Falk Companies, the site developer.

All that could change, however, because company President Harry Falk wants to build as high as 360 feet and 25 stories, assuming he gets approval from the Federal Aviation Administration. At that height, Triad Tower would rival Greensboro’s tallest buildings.

Plans for the 144,000-square-foot tower include a penthouse restaurant, an observation deck, floor-to-ceiling aquariums and a ground-level helipad. Construction could start next spring, and the tower should be ready for tenants by 2007, Falk said Tuesday.

“It’s my view that the product that we’ll bring to market will be uniquely differentiated from every other product on the market today,” Falk said.

The announcement comes at a time when the lagging local office market remains littered with vacancies. Much of the empty space can be attributed to a sour economy that prompted a recent exodus of white-collar jobs from the area, real estate experts said.

“(Triad Tower is) entrepreneurial and exciting to talk about, but I don’t know how successful he’s going to be out of the gate with the market the way it is today,” said Bobby Finch, a broker with Triad Commercial Properties.

But Falk said he’s confident that Triad Tower will offer the location and the amenities — underground parking and an indoor exotic fish pond are also in the works — to draw in plenty of tenants from the Triad, the Southeast and across the country. Companies can also buy space, he said.

Project architect Bill Monroe said the tower could cost from $14 million to more than

$30 million to build, depending on its height. Falk says he’s prepared to put down some of his own money to support the project, and has outside investors lined up as well.

“Yes, there are challenges,” Falk acknowledged. “But I have every reason to believe it will be a success.”

To lure tenants, Falk is aiming a multimedia marketing package at 21 big-name companies, including BB&T, Freightliner, SunTrust and RBC. FedEx, which is building a cargo hub at the nearby airport, is also on the list.

The packages will include information on naming rights, which means one of those companies could eventually attach its name and logo to the building.

Falk will also mail letters to 2,000 to 3,000 Triad businesses about the tower, including those who lease space in downtown Greensboro, on Green Valley Road and in the business park corridor between Greensboro and High Point, he said.

If built, Triad Tower will dwarf other buildings in west Greensboro, and will be closer in height to downtown buildings. The center city’s signature tower, the 20-story Jefferson-Pilot Building, is 374 feet tall.

Despite Falk’s optimism, some commercial real estate experts were skeptical that he could get FAA approval for the project and attract enough tenants.

Well-established real estate companies like Highwoods Properties and Liberty Property Trust are having trouble filling space – signs that Falk’s plans may be overly ambitious, said Finch, of Triad Commercial Properties.

“He may just be a genius, but it’s still very aggressive, in my opinion,” Finch said.

Liberty, in fact, is not planning to build any new office space in the area, said Larry Gildea, regional director and senior vice president.

“Right now, it’s very, very quiet,” Gildea said. “I expect it to be that way until the economy improves or until other events in the Piedmont Triad equate to the need for more office space.”

But in the end, the tower’s prestige and presence could lure plenty of tenants to the space, especially if Falk offers competitive leases, said David Hagan, president of Hagan Properties.

Still, Hagan acknowledged that weak market conditions could eventually force Falk to delay or even abandon his plans for the tower.

“I think that’s the reality of any project of that magnitude,” he said.

Falk, however, dismissed suggestions that the project could die. He said he’s hiring a prominent aviation attorney to help him negotiate the FAA approval, and sees the tower as a dramatic, soon-to-be-sought-after addition to the Triad office market.

“Under every circumstance, Triad Tower will be constructed,” he said.

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Great looking tower!!! Let's hope that it will end up being even taller :) Nice to see something so attractive being built in Greensboro. Sure, we would all love to see this in the downtown area, but I prefer to see it somewhere than nowhere at all.

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If this building is built out to its maximum proposal of 25-stories, it will be almost double the height that is depicted in the renderings. It would also be visible for miles. imagine standing on the top floor observation deck looking over the airport and listening to the planes roar over your head! Greensboro and Winston-Salem's skylines and the mountains would be visible from the top. I really like the idea of the large indoor exotic pond and the floor to ceiling aqauriums lining the entire lobby. I think it will be Greensboro's only high-rise that has a restaurant on the top floor. The city club occupies the top floor of the JP building but thats not really a restaurant.

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Looks like a nice looking building. I do wish it were downtown instead of by the airport but you take what you can get I suppose! Anything vertical is good IMO! ;-)

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Yes indeed, anything vertical is good. The last high-rise built in Greensboro was back in 1997 when Koury Corp. built the 12-story Grandover Resort. Greensboro doesnt built towers often like Atlanta or even Charlotte where one or two towers are proposed every year. So when one is proposed, im excited about it where ever its built in Greensboro. But I would rather see it downtown as well.

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