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James City County expected to purchase Ironbound Village offices to ease space shortage


Date: July 9, 2004
Contact: Ruth Richey, JCC Communications

Phone: (757) 253-6864



James City County is prepared to purchase three office buildings in Ironbound Village to relocate some administrative divisions from the Human Services Center and to create a new business incubator. The County will purchase the three 4,800-square foot buildings on the 1.39-acre site on Palmer Lane off Ironbound Road for $1.32 million.


The purchase is expected to be approved by the Board of Supervisors at their regular meeting on July 13 at 7:00 p.m. in the County Government Complex, Building F. The County will purchase the three office buildings from Cutting Edge Development LLC, George S. Hankins, Jr., and Howard B. Hankins.


IronboundVillage"We're going to save money in the long run for citizens by eliminating the need for $3.5 million in new construction on property adjacent to the Human Services Center," said James City County Administrator Sandy Wanner. "This is a win-win situation for the County because we were able to negotiate a favorable purchase price in an ideal location. It will fulfill our needs for more space for the next several years. It's also a solution to our space needs that can be accomplished in a few months rather than several years."


The Ironbound Village buildings will house some Community Services offices, including the Division of Parks & Recreation and Youth Services, which will move from the Human Services Center, 5249 Olde Towne Road. In addition, Neighborhood Connections and Housing & Community Development will move from leased offices at 5248 Olde Towne Road. Williamsburg Area Transport (WAT) Administration will relocate from 109 Tewning Road. When WAT operations move to the garage under construction in Colonial Williamsburg-owned property on Route 60, this will allow more room for the James City Service Authority on Tewning.


"This is really going to have a positive effect on the Ironbound area because it is a community driven effort," said Berkeley District Supervisor Jay T. Harrison, Sr. "It will motivate the whole community because the revitalization of Ironbound is coming to reality."


Ironbound Village is a mixed-use project that includes affordable housing. There are 23 single-family homes; seven townhouses are expected to begin construction in the near future.


The business incubator was recommended by an Industrial Development Authority (IDA) consultant study completed last year. The concept calls for an outside incubator manager to recruit technology-based companies that will share resources such as a receptionist, meeting space, counseling services and office equipment. The space will be leased to help the entrepreneurs and start-up business firms survive their early years, according to Economic Development Director Keith Taylor.


"We're in desperate need of space to house Social Services. This function is growing because of the growing County population and increasing community need," said Community Services Manager Tony Conyers. "This returns the Human Services Center to its original purposes of social services and health." The Olde Towne Medical Center is also located at the Center.


"The proximity of County offices within walking distance of residents and the relocation of Neighborhood Connections into a neighborhood are great assets," added Board of Supervisors Chairman Bruce C. Goodson. "This is a public-private partnership that bridges the gap between County government and neighborhoods. It will provide great benefits for citizens who will have easier access to services at a prime location."


Two of the Ironbound Village buildings are nearly complete except for the interior work, while the third building is framed. It will cost approximately $623,000 for electrical, plumbing, some furnishings and equipment, and other interior work, such as connecting into the County's fiber network for phone and data. The two-story brick buildings will provide office space for approximately 60 employees. The projected move-in date for occupying the offices is around the first of the year.


The space for a fourth building originally proposed by the developer is planned for additional parking spaces for County employees and customers. Allocated residential parking places will not be affected.


The nearby Ironbound Square community is undergoing a $3.2 million revitalization under the Ironbound Square Residential Revitalization Program. The Board of Supervisors also recently endorsed a $5.15 million grant application to construct a 67-unit apartment building which would provide supportive housing for lower income senior citizens. The grant application will be submitted jointly by Bay Aging and the Peninsula Agency on Aging to HUD in July.


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