Spokane developer Jerry Dicker has added the former CompUSA building to his company’s roster of downtown properties.
Dicker, the principal manager of Spokane-based GVD Commercial Properties, is paying roughly $3 million for the vacant 25,000-square-foot building, at 808 N. Ruby. The seller is the Lyons Family Trust, based in California. The trust has owned the building since 1997; CompUSA leased it until the electronics retail chain declared bankruptcy in 2007.
Dicker said he has no immediate plans and is looking for a long-term tenant to lease the building.
“We felt it is a good, strategic property for the long haul,” Dicker said.
GVD is a partner or full owner of several downtown buildings, including the Spokane Interplayers Playhouse, the Bing Crosby Theater, the Red Lion River Inn, the Hotel Ruby and the Burgan’s building and adjoining warehouse.
Dicker said he didn’t buy the CompUSA building specifically because of his nearby properties.
But he said he has a strong belief that the University District and the area near Gonzaga University are ripe for continued commercial and residential projects.
“We like the University District and think it’s one of the growing areas of Spokane,” he said. “But we don’t know if there’ll be any synergy (between the CompUSA building and other GVD properties) in that area,” he said.
The purchase was half of a GVD tax-deferred exchange, said Marshall Clark, the owner of Spokane’s Clark Pacific Real Estate, which brokered the sale.
U.S. tax law allows a property owner to defer capital gains taxes if they buy a “like kind” property of equal or greater value to one sold. Dicker did not specify what other property GVD sold to qualify for the exchange.
For several years GVD and Dicker have been partners in Burgan’s Block LLC, a group of investors who want to convert the former furniture building at 1120 N. Division and surroundings into an urban office and retail complex.
Dicker has talked about converting the 1918 structure into a hotel with restaurants, which would serve travelers along Division and the adjacent Gonzaga University campus.
But efforts to move the project forward stalled as city officials raised questions about traffic control and other matters.
With a new administration in Spokane City Hall, he said he hopes the idea can be re-started.