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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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The Dirt: Former automotive shop to become brewery, restaurant

By Amy Edelen Nicholas Deshais and Becky Kramer The Spokesman-Review

A former automotive shop on the west end of downtown Spokane will soon be a brewery and restaurant, according to city permit data.

The Watts Project will transform the former Watts Automotive shop, 1312 W. First Ave., into a 6,600-square-foot brewery production facility and tap room called Brick West Brewing.

Permits issued by the city show $750,000 in work to renovate the building, which sits just west of the intersection of First and Cedar Street. When complete, the building also will have a 8,100-square-foot restaurant, and the roof will feature a patio with covered seating.

Plans filed with city indicate the building will have a roof-top bar as well.

Matt Goodwin and Jordan Tampien are behind the construction project. The two are co-owners of the Boiler Room on Spokane’s North Side and Backyard Public House in the West Central neighborhood.

Tampien is also part of a team developing a $9.5 million, seven-story residential tower at 1309 W. First Ave., which is currently under construction across First from the Watts building. The team includes his brother, Joel Tampien, and another set of brothers, Matt and Ryan Goodwin.

General contractor for the Watts project is T.W. Clark Construction, of Spokane Valley. The architect is Trek Architecture. – N.D.

Spokane Metals relocating to Spokane Valley from Airway Heights

Spokane Metals is relocating its operations from Airway Heights to Spokane Valley.

The steel fabrication company is building a $2.4 million facility at 4100 N. Barker Road in Spokane Valley’s growing northeast industrial area.

Plans call for a two-story, 22,588-square-foot building, according to permits filed with the city.

Spokane-based Labar Architecture Inc. is designing the project. Davenport-based Halme Builders is the project contractor.

BR Land Group LLC purchased the more than 7-acre site for $223,000 in 2017.

Spokane Metals Manager Vlad Kuchin said the new facility is more than 10,000 square feet larger than the leased building in Airway Heights currently occupied by the company.

Kuchin said most of the company’s employees live in Spokane Valley and that was a factor in the decision to relocate.

Construction is expected to be completed by next year. – A.E.

Virtual reality gaming business to fill former Starbucks near Gonzaga

A former Starbucks near Gonzaga University will become a virtual reality arcade, according to permits issued by the city.

The building at 1217 N. Hamilton St. will see about $50,000 in interior work to remove walls and build spaces needed for the gaming space. For years, the 2,200-square-foot space housed the Seattle-based chain cafe.

The project is led by Pam Glen, who said Immerse VRcade should be open in early April.

When complete, the arcade will have 10 booths and a variety of games to play. Players can play in 15-minute increments, and it will cost $30 per hour.

Glen said educational and entertaining games will be available. She said her favorite is one in which players walk out on a plank 50 stories above city traffic.

The arcade will feature virtual reality headgear that allows players to experience the immersive technology. When complete, the arcade will join a number of similar gaming facilities in the area, including H.I.V.E. Virtual Reality and Virtual Gamerz in Spokane, and Virtual Reality CDA in Coeur d’Alene.

The property the building sits on is owned by LLC & M, a company governed by Greg Byrd, the managing broker for Spokane’s Byrd Real Estate. The property houses a number of buildings built between 1937 and 1970, though parts were remodeled in 1995, and was most recently sold in 1998 for $873,000.

The general contractor is Branda Building and Design, of Spokane. – N.D.

Assisted-living center in Coeur d’Alene expands

The Renaissance at Coeur d’Alene, an assisted-living facility, has completed an expansion.

With the new building, the number of living units at the Renaissance will increase to 80.

Chateau Rochelle is licensed for 16 residents and features about 7,300 square feet of resident living area. Glauser Construction was the contractor on the project.

The Renaissance at Coeur d’Alene is owned by Radiant Senior Living, which operates 19 communities in Oregon, Washington, Montana, Nevada, Colorado and Idaho.

The facility will have a grand opening with music and refreshments 4-6 p.m. Thursday at the Chateau Rochelle building, 2772 W. Avante Loop. – B.K.

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