WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – Douglas L. Edgeton has been selected as the new president of Piedmont Triad Research Park (PTRP). Edgeton was selected by the PTRP board, with the concurrence of Wake Forest University President Nathan O. Hatch and the board of Wake Forest University Health Sciences. Edgeton also serves as executive vice president and chief operating officer of WFU Health Sciences.
“Following the retirement of Dr. Richard Dean, we are very fortunate to have someone as capable as Doug Edgeton at the helm of this major community initiative,” Hatch said. “The research park holds great promise for the future of Winston-Salem and the region, and Doug has the business insight and leadership ability to help move the project forward.”
PTRP was established in the early 1990s, but under Dean’s leadership, since 2002 the park expanded to a total landmass of about 230 acres in eastern downtown Winston-Salem, from Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard on the north to Salem Creek on the south.
The park is divided into three districts – northern, central and southern. Most of the development to date has been concentrated in the central district, where there are now six park-related buildings totaling about a half-million square feet of space.
“In the central district, we expect to be working mostly on infrastructure for the next two to two-and-a-half years,” Edgeton said. He said that PTRP had secured grants totaling about $33 million for infrastructure improvements, including relocating railway lines, placing power lines underground along with a duct system for communications, storm water management, creek restoration, and new roadways.
In the northern district, PTRP is considering the development of about 16 acres of land and the rehabilitation of two large buildings and an old power plant – totaling about 1.3 million square feet – donated by R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co.
PTRP is now in a due-diligence period with a national developer that has been involved in several similar major historic projects, working on a market analysis and the terms of a possible business deal to develop the property.
“This would be a mixed-use development that could help to totally revitalize this area of downtown,” Edgeton said. “We would like to see about one-third of it used for housing, and we are working to include an affordable housing component. One-third of the space is envisioned as retail, and one-third would be used for life sciences offices and lab space.”
The park is expected to be fully developed over the next 20 to 30 years.
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Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center is an academic health system comprised of North Carolina Baptist Hospital and Wake Forest University Health Sciences, which operates the university’s School of Medicine and its other related enterprises including the Piedmont Triad Research Park. The Medical School is ranked 4th in the Southeastern United States in revenues from its licensed intellectual property.
Piedmont Triad Research Park (PTRP) is a place “where innovation lives.” PTRP is a highly interactive, master-planned urban based park located in downtown Winston-Salem, N.C., that provides office and laboratory facilities to biomedical and information technology tenants. Currently the PTRP community encompasses six buildings providing over 554,000 sq. ft. of wet lab, office, meeting and residential space; and is home to 15 life science, 11 information technology and eight business services tenants. Collectively these tenants employ 890 university and corporate personnel. PTRP expansion, led by Wake Forest University Health Sciences, is under way to create a total 5.7 million gross square feet of mixed-use research park space, reclaiming 230 acres of the city's downtown area over the next 20-30 years.