With these industries in varying stages of long-term decline, the
region continues to experience multipronged economic renewal
via expanding sectors including aerospace, arts and culture, defense, education, healthcare, life sciences and transportation. The
regeneration is fertile in more ways than one, as in the case of High
Point-based company BuzziSpace.
Featured in the October 2017 edition of Industry Week, this Belgian manufacturer of “acoustical furnishings that absorb sound to
reduce noise and provide privacy in imaginative designs” moved
into a century-old former textile mill in 2014. Presently on course
to nearly triple its employee base from 40 to 115, the company
created a community garden in front of its new headquarters.
“Our employees planted fruit trees, vegetables, berry bushes
and Muscadine grapes,” stated Tom Van Dessel, CEO of BuzziS-
pace. “At first, the vegetables and berries will be shared by our
employees, but when the crops are larger, they will be shared with
the surrounding community. We want what we are doing to be an
example to others to do similar things. We are surrounded by small
‘mill’ houses that may still be occupied by former workers of the
textile mill. Now, we are hiring some as workers.”
It’s a pitch-perfect example of renaissance in the Triad, where
consciousness around achieving health and wellness in its var-
ious forms is influencing convention center design, off-agenda
activities and more.
Health and wellness are deeply rooted in North Carolina’s historic
fifth largest city, courtesy of the early Moravian settlers who used
gardening for food, for community engagement and connections—
and medicinal purposes. Historic Bethabara, the national landmark
site of North Carolina’s first Moravian settlement from 1753, features
reconstructions of “Hortus Medicus,” the nation’s oldest known
medical garden, and oldest known colonial community garden.
There’s another medicinal garden at the Vierling House in Old
Salem, with other group-capable havens including the Old Salem
Museums & Gardens, Reynolda Gardens, Paul J. Ciener Botanical
Gardens and Tanglewood Park.
Today, the City of Arts and Innovation is blossoming with redevelopments such as the Twin City Quarter convention complex.
Encompassing the Winston-Salem Marriott, Embassy Suites Winston-Salem and newly reinvented Benton Convention Center (see
Latest + Greatest, page 90), the complex was created with delegate
well-being very much in mind.
Industrial lineage runs deep in the Triad region, reaching back to the enterprising Moravians who settled Salem, N.C., in 1753. Over time, the area would evolve
into a regional manufacturing stronghold,
powered by tobacco, textiles and furniture
CITY LAKE PARK, HIGH POINT
Renewal and wellness
form the foundation
of North Carolina’s
BY JEFF HEILMAN
HISTORIC BETHABARA MEDICINAL GARDEN, WINSTON-SALEM