Arlyn S. Powell, Jr.
Following its annual winter conference in Orlando in January, staff and board members of bicsi (Tampa, FL) returned home to break ground for a new office building in north Tampa`s Hidden River Corporate Park.
The new bicsi headquarters will be a 20,000-square-foot, single-story facility that will include classrooms, general office space, and a shipping area for the organization`s Publications and Education Departments. The 4.4-acre plot will accommodate an additional 25,000 square feet of office space, should future expansion become necessary.
According to bicsi executive director Jay Warmke, an advisory committee of the board of directors made its recommendation last December to purchase and develop the site--an undertaking valued at almost $2.7 million--after seven months of research and study. "We reviewed approximately 40 alternative sites," Warmke said, "including existing buildings, leasing, and build-to-suit." The advisory committee also worked with the Department of Real Estate and Finance of the University of South Florida (usf--Tampa, FL), where the organization currently leases office space, to analyze purchase versus lease options. The usf report, according to Warmke, "indicates that the purchase option is by far the most cost-effective," saving bicsi one-quarter to a half-million dollars over 10 years, depending on interest rates.