LAB plans to expand operations into neighboring building

The 35,000-square-foot building at 37 N. Lexington Ave. in downtown Asheville was recently purchased for $2.6 million by Cleo River, LLC. And the adjoining Lexington Avenue Brewery plans to lease space in the building to expand operations, reports co-owner Steve Wilmans.

The massive, four-story space, situated between The LAB and Tops for Shoes, has been sitting unused for years. Previously it was the home of Daniels Graphics and Daniels Communications. Renovating the building has the potential to further transform that downtown block, which has also recently given rise to new restaurant/bar The Southern.

The immensely-popular LAB plans to use the space to house new fermenting tanks and cold storage, among other operating equipment, says Wilmans.

“Things are going really good,” says Wilmans. “A problem we’ve had is, as big as the LAB building is, we’ve run out of space in a hurry for the brewing equipment.”

Wilmans also reports that the new owners of the neighboring property — who would like to remain anonymous, he says — plan to renovate the building to include retail space and apartments. Cleo River, LLC is registered to Asheville attorney Jason Peltz, according to N.C. Secretary of State filings. No other parties are listed in the company registration.

Although Wilmans says the LAB has no plans to expand its public area at this time, he reveals that “in a couple years time, maybe we would use the space for filling some kegs and possible bottling.”

Wilmans also owns Echo Mountain Recording Studio in downtown Asheville.

37 N. Lexington Ave

37 N. Lexington Ave

37 N. Lexington Ave

Photos by Jake Frankel.


Thanks for reading through to the end…

We share your inclination to get the whole story. For the past 25 years, Xpress has been committed to in-depth, balanced reporting about the greater Asheville area. We want everyone to have access to our stories. That’s a big part of why we've never charged for the paper or put up a paywall.

We’re pretty sure that you know journalism faces big challenges these days. Advertising no longer pays the whole cost. Media outlets around the country are asking their readers to chip in. Xpress needs help, too. We hope you’ll consider signing up to be a member of Xpress. For as little as $5 a month — the cost of a craft beer or kombucha — you can help keep local journalism strong. It only takes a moment.

About Jake Frankel
Jake Frankel is an award-winning journalist who enjoys covering a wide range of topics, from politics and government to business, education and entertainment.

Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

One thought on “LAB plans to expand operations into neighboring building

  1. ashevillain7

    So are there two levels below street level? I’ve been in that building on the Rankin side and it seemed like just a two story.

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.