Two Spokane investment groups plan to renovate the downtown buildings formerly known as the Sherwood Mall and bring in new tenants.
New owners of the side-by-side downtown properties include several well-known area developers and investors, including Spokane Chiefs and Spokane Indians owner Bobby Brett.
Brett is general manager of 1953 Box LLC, the group buying the two-story building on the corner of Stevens Street and Riverside Avenue. Built in 1953, the building was the first Spokane branch of First National Bank.
Sure Would LLC, led by Tom Clemson, has purchased the eight-story Sherwood Building next door, at 510 W. Riverside Ave.
In the 1970s, the two buildings were joined and marketed as Sherwood Mall, with a skywalk connecting to a building across Stevens Street.
In 1995 Sterling Financial Corp. bought and renovated the two buildings.
In 2007 the bank sold the buildings for $3.7 million to a group of North Idaho doctors.
In August 2012 Sterling moved all of its workers from leased space in the buildings to other downtown locations, vacating the Sherwood properties.
Two weeks ago the doctors group sold the smaller building to Brett and his partners for $500,000 and the Sherwood tower building for $800,000.
Brett’s partner, Chris Batten, said the first tenant will be Numerica Credit Union. The building will be rebranded the Numerica Building.
The space last used by Metro Cafe on the second level will be converted and used as offices for Spokane’s Nystrom + Olson Architecture, Batten said. Owners Sam Nystrom and Chris Olson are also members of the 1953 Box investment group.
Batten said the group plans to lease 10,000 square feet to another commercial tenant. He also said a new coffee shop will move into the second level.
Renovations will likely begin this spring. Numerica will use the location at its first downtown branch and is expected to move in by fall, Batten said.
The larger building was built in 1917, designed by architect Kirtland Cutter.
Originally, the goal was for the two investor groups to buy the properties together. Batten said he and Brett and the 1953 Box LLC group decided it was easier to separate the two deals.
Batten said both new owners intend to file petitions to have the buildings added to the Spokane register and possibly the National Register of Historic Places.
The two deals were handled by Chris Batten of RenCorpRealty; Michael Mathis and Vic Overholser of SDS Realty; and Kevin McCathren of McCathren Management.