ROGERS -- The Jones Trust is working to fill empty space in its Center For Nonprofits @ St. Mary's.
The three-story building with a basement encompasses 256,000 square feet, and 170,000 square feet is leasable, said Mike Gilbert, chief operating officer for The Jones Center and The Jones Trust. The trust has owned the building since 2008. There are 31 nonprofit organizations leasing space in the building.
To learn more about the Center For Nonprofits at St. Mary’s, go to jonestrust.org/stmarys/.
Betsy Reithemeyer, a former chief operating officer and chief executive officer for the trust, said she started working with the trust to help create the Center For Nonprofits in the former St. Mary's Hospital building. The idea began as a way for multiple nonprofit organizations to be in one place so people in need could go to one location, she said.
Reithemeyer gave an example of someone going to the Community Clinic at the center and then walking to another part of the building to go to the Benton County Health Department. A different organization in the building might be able to help someone if one organization can't.
Northwest Arkansas Community College moved its Adult Education Center out of the building May 18, said Steven Hinds, executive director of of public relations and marketing for the college.
The move opened up about 15,000 square feet of leasable space, Gilbert said. This could also be divided into smaller spaces if needed.
The college had a dedication and ribbon cutting Wednesday for the Adult Education Center's new location on the second floor of the Shewmaker Center for Workforce Technologies, Hinds said. The new location is on the college's Bentonville campus.
Employees with the trust are looking for a nonprofit organization to lease the space that can work well and collaborate with the other organizations in the building, Gilbert said. The building houses nonprofit organizations providing education, health care or government related services.
The trust also hired a property management and leasing professional three weeks ago to work with tenants and help fill vacant spaces, Gilbert said. The center has 18,000 square feet of vacant space. As of Thursday, there were 10 spaces vacant and available that are each less than 1,000 square feet.
The building was 89 percent occupied as of Thursday, but that number would drop to 83 percent if Northwest Arkansas Community College's Culinary Arts and Hospitality Program moved out immediately, Gilbert said. The program, which uses 14,801 square feet in the building, has plans to move out. The program's lease expires in June 2016 but it could lease space on a month to month basis if needed.
Plans call for moving the culinary program out of the building before classes start in fall 2016. There isn't yet an exact date for moving.
The school will move the program from the center to a 27,500-square-foot space in the former Tyson Foods plant at 801 S.E. Eighth St. in Bentonville.
Other organizations leasing space in the center include the American Red Cross, American Cancer Society, Ozark Guidance and Community Clinic.
The center recently sent out invitations for an announcement to be made Sept. 16 at the center that will have a "significant impact on the community." Gilbert referred questions about the announcement to Kelly Kemp-McLintock, chief advancement officer for Jones Center and Jones Trust, and she declined to comment.
NW News on 08/23/2015
Print Headline: Space opens at Rogers' Center for Nonprofits