General Information and Directions
Phoenix Station is a retail and business center located on the border of Gibsonville and Elon NC. It is a total 11,700 square feet and currently houses five tenant spaces. It was developed by ECA Properties, LLC and opened in 2008 for business. It is easily accessed from Exit 140 (University Drive/Elon University) and near Elon University.
Phoenix Station was conceived and started in 2006 when Kevin Bengel bought the almost 2 acre lot nestled along the railroad track on the border of Gibsonville and Elon, NC. Prior to his purchase, the lot had been zoned for agricultural use for many years while the towns grew up around it and served mainly as a convenient turn-around spot. Kevin's company, Alamance Consulting Engineers, had been leasing office space in the old Opera House (aka Montwhite Building) in downtown Graham for 8 years. Having worked for builders, architects and developers for years preparing engineering drawings, it seemed like a good move to try his hand at a small development project. He looked at it as not only an investment, but a chance to experience and learn the process from the owner's perspective. It also afforded an opportunity to to use some energy saving design products that could be evaluated from an engineering perspective for his and his clients benefit.
With the property being located at a previous railroad crossing and Gibsonville being a railroad oriented town, a railroad motif seemed to be a logical design scheme. This and the site's close proximity to the mighty Phoenix of Elon University resulted in the name of Phoenix Station. Building on this concept, the design team at Alamance Consulting Engineers developed a long narrow structure with a high clear story down the middle, metal roof, a large front canopy with simulated support brackets and hanging storefront signs underneath to simulate the look of an old train depot (see concept renderings). The building is 195 feet long by 60 feet deep and stands 28 feet tall at it's highest point. Large storefront windows were incorporated in the front to facilitate both retail or business occupancies. The building is mostly wood construction, but there is a steel spine supporting the clear story. The rear of the building is the southern exposure. The abundance of windows in the clear story allow permit plenty of warm sunshine to illuminate the interior giving the space a very open feeling and help supplement the tenant heating systems. Among the energy saving features currently incorporated in the space are: high efficiency variable speed heat pumps (Alamance Consulting Engineers), an automatic variable speed kitchen exhaust hood and waterless urinal (The Mission). The Mission also uses fabric HVAC ducting in the dining area which is just neat. Special thanks go out to civil engineer Chad Huffine (The L.E.A.D.S Group), structural engineers Bob Pippin (Pippin Engineering), Architect David Ripperton and Alamance Consulting Engineers (Plumbing, Electrical and Mechanical Design).
The construction of the shell building started in November of 2007 was completed in July of 2008 thanks to the steadfast work of Dodson and Chatman Construction. Despite over a month of weather related delays, they completed the project very quickly. They also did the upfit work for Alamance Consulting Engineers and the Colorado Cafe which were completed in September and November of 2008, respectively. Special tanks to Jeremy Kenyon and Boyd Chatman who kept the project moving and did a fine job. Other contractors who have contributed to the construction and maintenance of the building include Stonewall Construction, Chadco Builders and Kemco Electric.