September 3, 2010 in Business

Here’s the Dirt: Safeway updating regional center

Rooftop refrigeration system seen as a safety measure
By The Spokesman-Review
Colin Mulvany photo

Dale Dudley, a welder with PermaCold Engineering Inc., works on installing new refrigeration lines on the roof of the Safeway warehouse and distribution center at 5707 N. Freya St. The company is spending more than $1.9 million to move the refrigeration system to the roof of the 283,000-square-foot building.
(Full-size photo)

It’s costing Safeway Corp. $1.9 million at its Spokane regional distribution center to move the large building’s refrigeration system onto the roof.

The work started in July and is expected to end in the fall. Center manager Mike Fuhrman said he hopes the center can switch over to the new roof lines at the end of October.

Built nearly 50 years ago, the sprawling center measures 283,000 square feet. About 75,000 of that building is cooled and used for produce, meat and perishables.

Compressors, evaporators and condensers will also move to the roof. The center’s refrigeration system lines are currently placed up against the ceiling.

Company officials decided to move the existing refrigeration system and lines to the roof as a safety and maintenance measure. “It’s safer to get them out of the way and away from daily activities,” Fuhrman said.

The center serves 43 Safeway stores in Eastern Washington, North Idaho and western Montana. It has about 144 employees, with 110 of those being warehouse workers.

PermaCold Engineering of Everett is doing the work. The key date, in late October, will involve shutting down the interior lines and switching to the roof system within a 48-hour weekend window, Furhman said.

BPA buying North Side land

The Bonneville Power Administration is paying about $560,000 to CDC Mead for 7.4 acres of unimproved industrial land in the 2100 block of East Hawthorne Road, in north Spokane.

The land adjoins property on which BPA has power and distribution lines for area utilities.

CDC Mead is a subsidiary of Commercial Development Corp., of St. Louis, which purchased the former Kaiser Mead land after the aluminum smelter was shut down.

The parcel was the only piece on the south side of Hawthorne that the BPA didn’t own.

NAI Black’s Earl Engle represented CDC Mead. The purchase price essentially reflects the land’s assessed value, Engle said.

Ameritrust at Fernwell

Ameritrust CDC has opened a downtown Spokane office at the Fernwell Building, 505 W. Riverside Ave.

Ameritrust development officer Mike Estess will run the Spokane office. The company’s main office is in Seattle.

Estess will manage Ameritrust’s Eastern Washington efforts as a certified development company licensed by the Small Business Administration to administer the agency’s 504 loan program.

The 504 program is a financing program that offers long-term fixed-interest rates on primarily owner-occupied commercial real estate projects.

Avista consolidating offices

Avista Utilities will consolidate three offices serving its Colville district into a single, 31,380-square-foot operations center next year, spokesman Jessie Wuerst said Thursday.

Garco Construction is the contractor for the $3.8 million construction project, which will incorporate storage warehouse space, fleet maintenance facilities and offices for 30 employees, Wuerst said.

Construction will be completed around March 1, she said, with move-in expected two months later.

Green Home moving in

Green Home LLC is moving into a 4,150-square-foot section of the Spokane Business and Industrial Park at 3808 N. Sullivan Road, in Spokane Valley.

The company installs home energy efficiency products.

Here’s the Dirt is a weekly report on new developments and business openings, closings or movement in the Inland Northwest. E-mail or call (509) 459-5528.

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

Get stories like this in a free daily email