What used to be a home for pigeons, hawks, and other wildlife will soon be home to a major Erie-based IT company.
Velocity Network dove into this $8 million project more than a year ago. Now, they are just months away from completion. A massive crane lifts large steel beams into place on what used to be a major eyesore in downtown Erie.
Velocity Network is getting closer to opening the doors to their new headquarters. Though he looked at more than 20 properties, CEO Joel Deuterman landed on the abandoned and deteriorating Rothrock building on West 10th Street.
Deuterman says, “To tear down a structure without looking at repurposing it, in my mind, is an enormous mistake.”
Repurposing it may be an understatement. The building will feature a state-of-the-art training room, a workout facility, and full kitchen. Also, an outdoor patio for relaxation.
Brad Wiertel, COO, says, “We are creating an environment for our employees that’s going to be second to none.”
We’re on the fourth floor right now and here’s the view. You can see it’s completely exposed to the outside, but soon the facade of the building will give this area of downtown, a whole new look. From top to bottom will be glass.
Wiertel says, “We want to provide as much natural light as possible and offset that with all of our energy saving lighting.”
The central downtown location will allow the IT company to work with local university students.
Deuterman says, “Easily, this is the best property for Velocity and for the region quite honestly.”
One group is particularly excited about Velocity Network’s big move, the Erie Innovation District.
Karl Sanchack, President & CEO of Erie Innovation District, says, “It’s emblematic of what we want to try to do throughout the entire downtown. A lot more digital capabilities, a lot more cyber capabilities, provide a new look, a new feel, and a new workforce.”
New headquarters are expected to be up and running this November.
Deuterman also bought the old building across the street. He’s planning on repurposing that property as well as another space for his employees.