A rendering of the new Grand Avenue Chauffeured Transportation building, set to open in October in the shadow of the Nashville, Tenn. downtown skyline.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Grand Avenue Chauffeured Transportation is dealing with what any business would consider a desirable problem:
Rapid growth in a short period that leads to cramped offices and not enough places to park the fleet.
Grand Avenue broke ground Monday on a $1.4 million renovation project of a 63,000 square-foot building about a quarter mile from downtown and a quarter mile from the Tennessee Titans football stadium.
When work is done by the second week of October, the 4.5-acre site will have plenty of room for Grand Avenue’s growing 49-vehicle fleet and stadium parking for about 200 vehicles, said Bill Faeth, COO of Grand Avenue.
About 12,000 square feet of the LEED-certified building will be designated for offices, with the rest comprising a warehouse-style garage for fleet vehicles. The site also will include a 4,800 special events area for hosting tailgate parties and client social gatherings.
Grand Avenue, owned by CEO Carl Haley, has been steadily growing its fleet and clientele since it bought Faeth’s limousine company, Silver Oak Transportation, in January. The new building will have better proximity to client destinations and more room for growth.
Since January, the merged company has been operating out of Grand Avenue’s current building and Silver Oak’s previous building which combined offer only 13,000 square feet of covered warehouse space and about 4,000 square feet of office space, Faeth said. Both buildings are about 10 minutes from downtown and five minutes from the Nashville International Airport.
Grand Avenue now has 41 employees and 58 chauffeurs. “We are bursting at the seams,” Faeth said. “There is no place to park new buses and mini-buses, so we started already parking them at the new building.”
Grand Avenue bought the new site in April for an undisclosed amount. The company got a comparatively low price because the building was damaged by the epic regional floods that inundated Nashville in the Spring of 2010. “It had a great value proposition,” Faeth said.
Part of the renovation work will involve flood proofing the building, which sits just across the Cumberland River from downtown Nashville. A civil engineering analysis determined the interior walls and outside doors can be fortified to block rising waters, Faeth said.
Sources: Martin Romjue, LCT Magazine; Nashville Business Journal