December 2, 2004 in Business

Dentist has option on downtown land

By The Spokesman-Review

A Spokane Valley dentist has optioned half of a downtown Spokane block and has grandiose plans to develop it.

Philip Rudy has an agreement to buy 63,000 square feet of property owned by architect Glen Cloninger on the block bounded by Washington, Main, Bernard and Spokane Falls Boulevard. The other major property owners on the block are Diamond Parking, with 18,000 square feet, and a partnership between the city of Spokane and the Spokane Public Facilities District, with 39,600 square feet.

Rudy has been talking to the PFD and Diamond about designing a building that would meet all of their needs in return for use of the space, he said. His plan is to construct a 12-story structure over the entire 126,000-square-foot block. The building would include 2,000 parking spaces, retail, future expansion space for the convention center and possibly housing and office suites.

In addition, he’d like to construct additional floors on top of the first 12 for residential condominiums, up to 38 possible stories, he said. Much of the building would be set up as condominium units, enabling businesses and residents to buy the space they occupy.

Rudy said his option calls for paying $7.461 million for the property, or $118 per square foot. Rudy is looking for investors to support his project, but time is running out. If he can’t put the deal together by the end of January, he said, he’ll lose the option.

The PFD has also been trying to buy the block for additional parking and future convention center expansion space. PFD Executive Director Kevin Twohig said the board has supported Rudy’s efforts because his design includes everything the PFD needs.

“I think, wow, he’s got big plans,” Twohig said. “He’s a very sweet man and it would be a pleasure to work with him. It’s wonderful that people are going out there spending their own money to explore these kinds of options.”

Coeur d’Alene businessman Duane Hagadone also has an option to purchase part of Cloninger’s property to build a hotel, but Cloninger said that deal is a “back-up” to the arrangement with Rudy.

Rudy was born and raised in Spokane and has a dentistry office in the Valley. He has dabbled in land development on the side, constructing and selling three office buildings on the Argonne-Mullan corridor in the past 30 years.

He and his wife have the option for the Cloninger land under the name Fearless Phil Investments LLC. “I’m looking for other investors,” Rudy said. “I can’t pull teeth fast enough to make all the payments (myself).”

Rudy will make a presentation on his plans to the PFD board on Dec. 14, he said.

Thoughts and opinions on this story? Click here to comment >>

Get stories like this in a free daily email