Cars

Carvana rolls out car vending machine – RichmondBizSense

Summary

Cars and signage have been added to the Carvana vending machine tower, which started being illuminated at night in recent weeks. (Photos by Jonathan Spiers)

With its illuminated tower now loaded with cars, one of the oddest and more eye-catching structures to rise in Richmond is ready to roll.

Carvana today is opening the doors of its “car vending machine” tower at 2201 Westwood Ave. The 12-story structure beside Interst…….

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Cars and signage have been added to the Carvana vending machine tower, which started being illuminated at night in recent weeks. (Photos by Jonathan Spiers)

With its illuminated tower now loaded with cars, one of the oddest and more eye-catching structures to rise in Richmond is ready to roll.

Carvana today is opening the doors of its “car vending machine” tower at 2201 Westwood Ave. The 12-story structure beside Interstate 195 is the online auto seller’s 30th vending machine nationwide. It can hold up to 47 vehicles at a time.

Part customer center, part company billboard, the $4 million facility is the first physical presence for Carvana since it entered the Richmond market in 2016.

Carvana’s Rob Christian in the customer center, which has brick walls and industrial-style hardwood floors.

Customers can opt to retrieve their purchases at the tower, bringing with them a mailed token that’s used to activate the automated machine. It lowers their vehicle down the glass-paneled tower and rolls it out via two vehicle bays complete with runway lights.

The company also offers deliveries to homes or offices, via a distribution hub at an undisclosed location in Petersburg.

The tower comes five years after Carvana initially sought a similar facility near Short Pump. That tower, which would have risen half the height of Richmond’s, was proposed along Interstate 64 within a mile of Richmond-based competitor CarMax’s original location.

A token that’s mailed to customers sets off the vending machine action at the Carvana tower.

Carvana withdrew that proposal after failing to find agreement with neighboring property owners, who had a say in the land’s use.

Designed with its surroundings in mind, the Richmond facility is customized with brick walls and driveways, warehouse-style windows and industrial-style hardwood floors, reflecting the neighborhood that’s between Acca Yard and Scott’s Addition. It sits across from TopGolf.

WHN Architects, out of Charlotte, North Carolina, designed the building, which was built by Colorado-based Catamount Constructors. Kimley-Horn was the engineer. Construction started earlier this year.

A view from inside the Carvana tower.

The customer center, open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays-Saturdays, includes a waiting area, reception desk and touchscreen console, which visitors can use to browse inventory, request an offer on a car they want to sell, and familiarize themselves with the Carvana platform. Transactions are encouraged to be made online and off-site.

The building also includes an office area for more than a dozen employees, a detailing bay for vehicles headed for the tower, and the vending machine itself – an automated vehicle turntable and lift system that includes sensors that won’t allow it to operate if anyone is inside the tower space.

Rob Christian, a Carvana vending …….

Source: https://richmondbizsense.com/2021/11/17/carvana-rolls-out-car-vending-machine/