Fort Smith-based Arkansas Oklahoma Gas Corp. (AOG) is in the process of moving out of its downtown Fort Smith offices and locating in a building (former Golden Living headquarters) owned by the Arkansas Colleges of Health Education (ACHE).
AOG, which provides natural gas to more than 60,000 homes and businesses in western Arkansas, is leasing 28,000 square feet of office space on the fifth floor of the ACHE property. Terms of the 10-year lease were not disclosed, but Little Rock-based Moses Tucker said AOG will spend up to $2 million to configure the space for its purposes. The AOG office renovation is expected to be complete by January 2023. Moses Tucker is the leasing agent for ACHE.
Fred Kirkwood, AOG chief customer officer, said the company will eventually sell the property at 115 N. 12th St., in downtown Fort Smith. He said the new space will house people from the downtown office and some employees from the AOG operations facility on Waldron Road.
The former Golden Living headquarters was acquired by ACHE in September 2020. The 318,000-square-foot building – now known as the ACHE Research Institute Health and Wellness Center – sits on just under 55 acres in the south part of Fort Smith. Renovation of the building by ACHE is expected to be completed by December 2022.
According to Moses Tucker, there is 47,430 square feet available for lease on the third floor and 25,000 square feet for lease on the fifth floor.
AOG is not the only company to move to the ACHE building. Fayetteville-based Haas Hall is in the process of locating a charter school on the building’s third floor. The school is set to open in August 2023 with 350 students in grades 7-11. In the second year, the school could reach top enrollment of 500 students in grades 7-12. The start-up cost for the Fort Smith campus is estimated at $1.86 million.
In addition to Haas Hall and Summit, other companies and organizations with space in the ACHE research building are Arts on Main, Brickyard Healthcare, Cre8tive Arts Network, Fab Lab Fort Smith, Fort Smith Symphony, Pearl Senior Care, RAM Regional Art Museum, and the Western Arkansas Ballet.
Centennial, Colo.-based Summit Utilities acquired AOG in early 2017, and owns natural gas distribution and transmission subsidiaries in Arkansas, Colorado, Maine, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Texas.
Summit Utilities announced earlier this year it completed acquisition of gas distribution assets of Houston-based CenterPoint Energy Inc. that provide energy to 525,000 customers in Oklahoma, Arkansas and Texas, and include about 17,000 miles of gas main pipeline in the three states. Overall, Summit entities have approximately 625,000 customers and operate more than 23,400 miles of pipeline.