|Davidson College Purchases Downtown Building; Will Open Expanded College Store on Main Street
April 25, 2011
Contact: Stacey Schmeidel, 704/894-2798
Davidson, NC -- A new Davidson College Store is coming to Main Street.
Davidson College has purchased the two-story building at the intersection of Main and Depot Streets in downtown Davidson in order to establish an expanded College Store. The new store will combine the functions of ‘Cats on Main and the current College Store, located on campus in the Alvarez College Union.
The new downtown store is a key element of the college's strategic plan, developed over the past four years under the leadership of former president Tom Ross. With the support of town leaders, the college established a presence downtown with ‘Cats on Main, which opened in 2009. The store has been popular, drawing students and college visitors downtown. The new space at Main and Depot Streets is considerably larger than ‘Cats on Main, and will allow for a wider variety of merchandise.
The college took ownership of the building at the end of 2010 and assumed all the leases. The building's largest tenants-Bonsai Restaurant and BB&T Bank-will remain in their current locations until their leases expire in January 2012.
The college is working to select a space designer to develop detailed plans for the downtown store. The college plans to begin construction in that space in February 2012, and the new College Store is slated to open in August 2012, in time for the fall semester. Once the downtown store is open, the current store space in the Alvarez College Union will be revamped and used for student services.
"The 'Cats on Main store has been a big hit on Main Street, and we are excited about the college's expansion of the campus store to Main Street," said Davidson Mayor John Woods. "This expanded college-oriented operation will further connect the college and town, making college services more accessible to the public. This is great news for Main Street and for the college-town connection."
"This location is immediately adjacent to campus, and we can't imagine a better spot for the Davidson College Store," said Ed Kania, Davidson College's vice president for finance and administration. "We believe that the new store will accomplish what ‘Cats on Main has done in an even bigger way. We're excited about the possibilities that this provides for our students and for the town of Davidson, and we appreciate the support that town leaders have given us as we've developed the college's presence on Main Street."
Both Bonsai and BB&T plan to relocate in the area, and are currently seeking alternate space.
The square footage of the downtown building is roughly equivalent to that of the current College Union store-but the fact that the space can be designed from scratch is advantageous.
Davidson is a highly selective independent liberal arts college for 1,900 students located 20 minutes north of Charlotte in Davidson, N.C. Since its establishment in 1837 by Presbyterians, the college has graduated 23 Rhodes Scholars and is consistently regarded as one of the top liberal arts colleges in the country. Through The Davidson Trust, the college became the first liberal arts institution in the nation to replace loans with grants in all financial aid packages, giving all students the opportunity to graduate debt-free. Davidson competes in NCAA athletics at the Division I level, and a longstanding Honor Code is central to student life at the college.