Real estate firm trades aluminum-clad flying saucer building for Scott’s Addition

The former McKinnon and Harris building is taking shape as a revamped office building.

The final makeup of the roster of new tenants at a redeveloped furniture manufacturing building in Scott’s Addition has become clearer.

Local real estate investment firm Cava Capital confirmed last week that it is moving its headquarters into the former McKinnon and Harris building at 1806 Summit Ave., while city records show that local health food company Health Warrior also is in as a tenant.

Cava Capital has been based out of the old Markel headquarters at 5310 Markel Road near Willow Lawn, a building known for its aluminum foil-like exterior and its flying saucer-like shape. Cava has been in the building since moving its operations from Charlottesville to Richmond in 2014. The firm is 10 years old.

Cava is leaving the distinctive former Markel building near Willow Lawn.

Owner Frank Cava was part of the investment group that included Spy Rock Real Estate Group and local investor Brad Cummings, which purchased the McKinnon and Harris building for $2.4 million this year, with the intention to convert it into retail or office space.

Cava said his company will more than double its office space from 2,200 to 5,000 square feet through the move.

“We outgrew this space … but the real impetus is that I want to grow a company where we’re a destination, where people want to come work,” Cava said of moving to sought-after Scott’s Addition.

Cava Capital buys and fixes up residential units that often are eligible for Section 8 housing vouchers, Cava said. The firm either sells the houses or keeps them as rental properties.

“We’re trying to better the community house by house and build a class of assets to provide affordable housing for the city of Richmond,” Cava said.

The firm has a portfolio of over 200 houses, and recently acquired 29 in Richmond in a $3 million deal. It ranked 18th on BizSense’s RVA 25 list of the fastest-growing private companies in the region.

Frank Cava

Frank Cava

Cava and his staff of 17 are looking to move into the new digs in late 2018 or early 2019.

Joining them in the building is national coworking brand Venture X and financial firm Agili, formerly known as JoycePayne Partners.

Cava is one of two previously unnamed tenants that Spy Rock’s Andrew Basham alluded to this month when confirming that the 37,000-square-foot building was fully leased.

City records show the other is likely to be Health Warrior, which has grown quickly in recent years selling bars and other snacks made from chia seeds.

A building permit filed with the city in late September describes Health Warrior as a tenant. Health Warrior CEO Shane Emmett declined to comment. The company is based a block away from the McKinnon and Harris building at 1707 Summit Ave.

UrbanCore Construction is the general contractor handling the building’s renovation. PermitZip is doing the mechanical, electrical and plumbing drawings.

The McKinnon and Harris tenants will join a growing list of companies moving their headquarters to the neighborhood in recent months as the Scott’s Addition office market remains hot.

Last month, staffing firm Aerotek and Ippon Technologies signed on to move their local offices to 1901 Roseneath Road and 3431 W. Leigh St., respectively.

In August, the redeveloped HandCraft Building at 3300 W. Leigh St. filled out its available office space with Nasdaq Dorsey Wright, with local retailer Need Supply Co. taking over Evatran’s 20,000-square-foot lease.

Construction firm Whiting-Turner also recently signed on to move its offices to The Spur, a mixed-use development at 1519 Summit Ave.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments