Location:Nebo, NC
Owner:NC Department of Natural & Cultural Resources
Architect:PFA Architects
Contract Amount:$7,189,245
Completion Date:September 2021

The 7,950 SF, single-story building with associated site amenities serves as the welcome and resource center for Lake James. The Visitor Center is comprised of a large exhibit hall, retail gift shop, two meeting/classrooms, administrative suite, public restrooms, and building service spaces. The building construction includes steal bar joists, slab on grade foundation, well building, septic, and landscaping. The exterior natural earth tones are reflected in natural river rock masonry accents, Geolam hybrid aluminum/wood siding, hardie siding board & batten, and standing seam metal roof. The rear viewing deck constructed of Geolam decking incorporates exhibits in the patio and amphitheater. The interior warm wood tones compliment the 30 ft tall vaulted ceilings with floor to ceiling acid etched glass. The polished-stained concrete floors highlight a walking path through the exhibits with 4 unique accent stain colors. The offices, breakroom, classroom and lecture hall have maple cabinetry and accent carpet throughout. The service desk and gift shop stand out with black walnut cabinetry. Extensive site work included soil excavations and grading for an entrance road, a paved 202 car parking lot, outdoor classroom/amphitheater, and a new trail access leading to the new pedestrian bridge. The 8 ft wide, 12 ft high off water at center, steel and timber bridge spans 245 ft across the cove and required floating platforms and crane access in the remote location.

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