March 14, 2006 in Business

Inland Northwest Health Services finds home for workers

By The Spokesman-Review
 

Spokane-based Inland Northwest Health Services announced on Monday it has found a new downtown home for about 400 workers who’ve run out of space in the company’s two current locations.

INHS, jointly operated by Spokane’s two hospital systems, will take space in six floors of the 17-story Well Fargo Financial Center. The building, at 601 W. First Ave., is the former headquarters of Metropolitan Mortgage & Securities Co.

The 400 INHS workers, who are currently located in the Holley Mason Building and Steam Plant Square, will be consolidated starting around Oct. 1, said Tom Fritz, CEO of the Spokane-based nonprofit.

INHS has seen rapid growth primarily in the information technology group that provides services to hospitals and medical centers. Fritz said that group might grow by between 50 and 100 people over the next year. INHS also operates St. Luke’s Rehabilitation Center, the Northwest Medstar air transport service and a telemedicine network.

The Wells Fargo building has room for future growth plus offers a central downtown location, Fritz said. “It was important and essential that we locate downtown to be near the medical centers,” he said.

Another factor was the immense height of the Wells Fargo building, Fritz said. “The size of our logo (on the east and west sides of the building) will have a lot of marketing value,” he said.

INHS will take 60,000 square feet inside the Well Fargo center, roughly one third of the building’s total. It will occupy part of the first floor, all of the second, fourth, fifth, sixth and 12th floors, plus part of the basement, according to Walt Worthy, the Spokane developer who owns the building.

INHS workers will find parking spaces in Worthy’s new garage next to the Wells Fargo building, in the nearby Davenport Hotel garage, also owned by Worthy, and in a parking lot his company recently purchased. That lot, across from the railroad tracks south of the Wells Fargo center, has about 110 spaces, Worthy said.

“We’d like to think we have the best space in town at the best price. We’re happy they’re staying downtown and we welcome them to the Wells Fargo Center,” Worthy said.

Staff writer Alison Boggs contributed to this report.


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