Story by Lindsey Chester, photos by Brooke Meyer.
Cary, NC – This past Friday, we had a look inside the Jones Foye House at the corner of Dry and Academy Streets in Downtown. Ed Gawf, Downtown Development Manager for Cary, was showing the property to Heart of Cary Association members to stimulate interest in leasing the historic home.What we found was a charming, and surprisingly well maintained interior, despite the conditions seen from the exterior.
The house has a beautiful central hallway with soaring 12 foot ceilings and lots of the original molding and wood trim surrounding old fireplaces and doorways. There is also a funky addition at the rear of the house where a code regulated handicap accessible bathroom and kitchen area were added more recently.
What Kind of Business Would Have You Here?
The historic home, dating from 1896 was purchased by the Town of Cary last year for $600,000 in September. The Town opened the house to the public for the first time in hopes that interested parties could start to visualize new uses for the building.
The town plans to lease the space to the “right party who will add something to this corner”, situated directly across from the new Cary Arts Center and the vacant acreage the Town is accumulating across Academy Street.
Ideas abounded on Friday: a restaurant, art museum, art gallery, coffee house, library, office space, or the right retail.
There are currently 5 main rooms on the first floor with the small funky “kitchen” space at the back. There is also a low ceilinged upstairs space, previously used for office and storage. The lot is large (nearly half an acre), with driveway access on both Academy and Dry. No area is currently paved for parking, but the lot is graded and level.
So how about it entrepreneurs? Make Ed an offer he can’t refuse!
Pictures: Jones Foye House
Brooke Meyer shot photos of the Jones Foye House last week including some of the other rooms: