ADVERTISEMENT
Advertise Here

Office Hours

Posts tagged: Great Northern Building

McKinstry renovates downtown historic railroad repair building

This is the first third of our SR business story running tomorrow at Spokesman.com.

Along with it will be a photo slideshow by Jesse Tinsley (whose shot is featured here), and a video. The print version will appear in Friday's daily editions of The Spokesman-Review.

Several years ago, Dean Allen was driving around Spokane, in search of a site for a company office. He spotted an aging brick building along the banks of the Spokane River just east of downtown, and he decided it had potential.

Allen, the CEO of Seattle-based McKinstry, now says that large building, built in 1907 and originally used as a railroad repair depot, was the best possible choice. It brought together about 90 workers inside a historic building that Allen hopes will become a gathering spot for other creative, innovative companies and startups.

McKinstry, which designs, builds and manages other companies’ properties, has several offices across the Western United States. The firm has operated in Spokane for about 10 years.

But for Allen and others, McKinstry's restored Spokane building is the plum and perfect example of the company’s core values of innovation and historic preservation. The company didn't take the cheap route; they invested more than $20 million in the project.

Inside the Great Northern Building restoration (hats off to McKinstry)

Lost in the hubbub about Apple and Trader Joe's coming to town is the bigger news that the McKinstry company, a high-end facilities management and design-build firm, bought and is renovating the historic Great Northern Building, on the east edge of downtown Spokane.

In the past few days we got a chance to get a view of what's happening inside and outside the building. The building is on the national historic register; it was originally the repair depot for the first electric railway system that operated between downtown and Liberty Lake and points east.

This cell-phone photo shows “car barn 2” inside the Great Northern Building, which sits between the Habitat building on Trent and the Spokane River. The view is toward the south and toward the Spokane River.

The original wood ceilings and brick walls have been cleaned up and are used as key features in the building plan.

The McKinstry offices will be on the left side of the barn. Some other spaces will be available to lease to commercial tenants.

A permit pulled by McKinstry estimates the cost of restoring the building will approach $10 million.

Get blog updates by email

About this blog

The Spokesman-Review business team follows economic development in Spokane and the Inland Northwest.

Sign up for our business email newsletter
Latest comments »

Read all the posts from recent conversations on Office Hours.

Contributors

John Stucke John Stucke is a deputy city editor who helps build local news coverage and writes about health care, bankruptcy and rural affairs.

Recent work by John

Alison Boggs (@alisonboggs) Online Producer Alison Boggs posts and manages content on spokesman.com and its social networking accounts.

Recent work by Alison

Scott Maben Scott Maben is a Deputy City Editor who covers North Idaho news and higher education.

Addy Hatch is the city editor, and formerly was business editor.

Search this blog
Subscribe to this blog
ADVERTISEMENT
Advertise Here