Auto Country Club speeds into town with garage condos
HUNTERSVILLE – Ed Bongart had a realization a year ago as he drove around Huntersville.
“I thought, ‘This is the perfect place to start what I wanted to start six years ago in Florida,’” Bongart said.
Bongart wanted to establish a place where car enthusiasts could meet up, swap stories and work on their cars.
That’s exactly what the Auto Country Club plans to be, Bongart said. The club is a $15 million project on a 27-acre lot off Sam Furr Road in Huntersville. It is slated to have 10 buildings at 20,000 square feet each.
There will be 18 garage condos in each building. Garages range in size from 576 square feet to 1,920 square feet. Each condo also includes a fully customizable second-floor loft. The town approved garage condo owners to stay in their lofts for up to 30 days a year.
There’s a good reason for that, Bongart said.
“We’re at a central location in the area and we’re trying to market to people from all over,” Bongart said. “The fact people can stay in the condos means if you live some distance away, you can have a mini-vacation here or stay at them when you go to the races at Charlotte (Motor Speedway).”
Bongart has gotten solid feedback from the public. He’s already reserved half the garages
“I’ve heard from people around here, in Georgia, West Virginia, just all over,” Bongart said.
Mooresville resident Richard Gwilt, 58, reserved a pair of garage condos. Gwilt’s condos – one 576 square feet and 1,344 square feet – will house as many as 11 of his collector cars.
Gwilt’s car collection includes Corvettes, Shelby Mustangs and Camaros. He said he will keep most of his collection in the garage condos as soon as they’re completed.
The condos cost Gwilt $59,900 for the smaller one and $134,900 for the larger one. But Gwilt said he thought the prices are reasonable for what the country club provides. It’s a facility unlike anything else the area has seen, Gwilt added.
“I look forward to meeting like-minded people and talking about cars with them,” Gwilt said.
Bongart said the country club, expected to open by mid 2014, has no restrictions on the types of cars people can store.
“I’ve heard from people who will put in cars like Ferrari, Rolls Royce, several different other makes,” Bongart said.
Bongart said he’s trying to elicit support from local banks in addition to private investors to raise money for the project. The town approved a zoining amendment on April 2 to allow the club to develop. The next step for the club is to submit its site plan to the town for approval. Bongart could not say when he would submit the plan.
The sales office is located at 11136 Sam Furr Road. Call 704-608-4991 for more information.