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City may help S.G. Atkins CDC purchase Nissen Wagon Works building

Updated: Sep 27, 2023

The City of Winston-Salem is considering helping S.G. Atkins Community Development Corporation acquire and revitalize the old Nissen Wagon Works building.

Carol Davis, executive director of the CDC, made a presentation to the Finance Committee on Monday Sept. 12, detailing their plans for property located at 1539 Waughtown Street. Davis discussed plans to transform the abandoned site into a co-working warehousing space which will provide multiple businesses with the opportunity to use shared warehouse space without having to purchase or lease an entire building.

“I believe this property represents an opportunity for our emerging entrepreneurial ecosystem, not just for co-warehousing but for co-working space and for adaptive reuse of a site that has been obviously in disrepair for a long time,” said Davis while going over plans for the site.

After housing the Nissen Manufacturing Center for many years, the building was sold to Western Electric in the early ‘90s. While other businesses and corporations have occupied the space over the years, for over a decade the property has been deserted.

According to Davis, the current owner, MM Buggy Factory LLC, purchased the property last year. After accessing the building, they decided the project was more than they had bargained for. In December 2018, parts of the building collapsed after snow piled on the roof during a winter storm. “After reviewing the site in detail, they determined that this deal had some hair on it, so to speak … it was a little more than these for-profit developers wanted to get involved with because before you could lease any of it, you have to go in and do remediation,” she said.

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