$2M investment

Perry & Associates moving into 116-year-old building

PEYTON NEELY   The Marietta Times
ABOVE: Employees of Perry & Associates, Certified Public Accountants enter their new location at 313 Second St. in Marietta Thursday afternoon. BELOW: The original building operated as a Ford car dealership in the early 1900s.

PEYTON NEELY The Marietta Times ABOVE: Employees of Perry & Associates, Certified Public Accountants enter their new location at 313 Second St. in Marietta Thursday afternoon. BELOW: The original building operated as a Ford car dealership in the early 1900s.

Constructed in 1900, the building located at 313 Second St. in Marietta will now house Perry & Associates, Certified Public Accountants, adding historic restoration and economic growth to the city for the new year.

Perry & Associates was previously located 428 Second St. and the move represents a $2 million project to keep the history of the building as authentic as possible.

“These are the original floors and ceilings from the beginning,” said Scott Woods, director of business. “We wanted to keep our business in Marietta and that’s when we found this building.”

Restoration of the more than 100-year-old building has been ongoing for the past year. The company worked with the Ohio Historical Society and were granted the Ohio Historical Preservation Tax Credit. The Ohio Historic Preservation Tax Credit program is partnered with the State Historic Preservation Office which determines if a property qualifies as a historic building.

The site was first owned by George C. Wilderman, who owned and operated a Ford Car dealership downtown. Wilderman owned the first Ford Car dealership in Marietta which flourished when Henry Ford began the assembly line manufacturing.

The original building was a two-story, flat roofed, brick building. It had floor-to-ceiling glass allowing the dealership to have cars inside and out of the building, which was unique for this time period. The building now has offices in the upper floors along with 32 work stations for employees. The downstairs still holds the original open floor plan with the receptionist desk being the center of the floor.

New windows were installed in the front of the building allowing people driving by to see the front desk, keeping the openness of the first floor.

“We did a lot of work to bring the building history back,” said Woods. “We would submit plans to the Ohio Historic Preservation Office. They would evaluate every aspect of the building and give us recommendations. We officially got verbal approval to begin construction in August.”

Jodey Altier, president and managing partner of Perry & Associates, said she is excited to be able to support the history of the building while providing economic growth for Marietta.

“We actually surveyed all of our employees who are actually in their mid-to-late 20s,” she said. “It was unanimous that everyone wanted to be downtown and stay in our founding city.”

According to the Marietta Water Department, the Third Street building has been vacant since Rite-Aid Pharmacy changed locations in 2000. Prior to that, Beagle Discount Pharmacy occupied the building.

“We did a complete build out. The hardest project was finding windows almost identical to the original ones on the front of the building,” said Woods. “There is so much more space for growth in our business and we hope to expand by 15 or so people within the next few years.”

Currently there are 34 employees with Perry & Associates.

Before, Perry & Associates was leasing its 428 Second St. location. It purchased the new building for $475,000.

“We are open now and just completing a few more things inside,” said Altier. “Our official grand opening will be on Feb. 14.”

Brett Burns, auditor for Perry & Associates, said he’s proud of the history behind downtown Marietta and looks forward to working right in the middle of it.

“Marietta is all about the history,” he said. “The downtown atmosphere makes you forget you’re just in Marietta because of the big city feeling.”

Mayor Joe Matthews was a dear friend of the original founder Randall Perry of Perry & Associates, he said.

“I am thrilled to see them move closer and it’s a nice addition to downtown,” he said. “Anytime we can get a new business in Marietta, I’m happy to help out. New businesses mean more city taxes being paid and everybody’s just better. I am really excited to see they managed to preserve the history of the building while boosting local economy.”

 

History of the building at 313 Second St.

¯ It is the new home to Perry & Associates, Certified Public Accountants.

¯ The historic building was formerly owned by George C. Wilderman.

¯ It was an operated as a Ford car dealership constructed in 1900.

¯ The last time the building was occupied it was a Rite-Aid Pharmacy until 2000.

¯ The restoration of this building represents a more than $2 million investment project for Marietta.

Source: Debbie Cunningham.

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