KINSTON, N.C. (WNCT) — The Kinston Enterprise Center is now on the market after the Downtown Kinston Revitalization Board of Directors voted to sell the office space.
The director of the organization, Leon Steele, said this was a long time coming.
“Our board of directors decided it was time to sell the building, it was a business incubator from its inception when it was a Sears department store, believe it or not, and it was converted into an office building,” Steele said. “We have our mission of revitalization, and this building did its job.”
The decision is now forcing occupants to relocate, such as the local non-profit Kinston Teens. The organization was founded in 2014 by director and Kinston City Councilman, Chris Suggs.
“Definitely caught us a bit off guard, with this catching us right at the start of spring,” Suggs said. “This is usually our busy season for the organization and now we’re faced with this new transition of having to look for a new space. The uncertainty and the time crunch has definitely been exenterated.”
Suggs added that, like other tenants, the potential sudden move puts him in a financial bind as a non-profit owner and would have to quickly exhaust fundraising efforts to find a new headquarters for his organization.
Suggs said he expects new ownership to come quickly, and when that happens, tenants like himself could have just seven days to vacate the property.
Steele, however, mentions that it’s important to recognize the silver linings in the situation.
“Over the years, we’ve had a number of really wonderful tenants and that’s a long period of time,” Steele said. “Not very many landlords could probably say that.
“We’ll miss [the occupants] and we hate to see that this possibly disrupts their operations or lives, but they’ve been here and they’re smart people, they’re good people with good clientele, they’ll be fine.”