Located in the heart of the Wake Forest Innovation Quarter in downtown Winston-Salem, North Carolina, the newly renovated Bailey Power Plant is the district’s newest addition. It is also the last of the historic buildings to be redeveloped by Wexford within the Wake Forest Innovation Quarter and culminates the largest historic redevelopment project in the history of North Carolina, now totaling more than 1.1 million square feet – all of which are LEED Certified. Not only were these projects within the Innovation Quarter incredibly efficient with extensive attention to detail, but all of the buildings were historic renovations, and special care was taken to preserve the historical integrity of the structures. Bailey Power Plant was chosen as the winner of NAIOP NC Redevelopment Project of the Year in 2018.
Dormant for almost 20 years, the renovated Bailey Power Plant complex now features more than 110,000 square feet of inspiration office, retail, and entertainment space as part of the revitalization of the entire area. The complex was originally constructed in 1947 to provide steam and electricity to the surrounding R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company. The architects wanted people in the space to be drawn to the existing historic character. The interiors of the renovated coal-fired plant celebrate machine-scaled structure and timeworn texture by juxtaposing existing materials with minimal new construction. Smooth reinforced concrete, skeletal steel framing, worn brick walls, and tall cylindrical smoke stacks that rise above the flat roofs with painted lettering that spells “R.J.R. TOB. Co” were all left in their original condition to reflect the industrial past of the old building. Because of the age and prior use, extensive floor prep was required, including removing bolts that once secured the original machinery and equipment. The capstone of the development, the Bailey Power Plant project represents the beauty that results when history meets innovation.