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Thursday, December 5, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  Business

Spokane’s third charter school finds home in downtown Lerner Building

4 Degrees Real Estate is anticipated to close on the sale of the Lerner Building building at 718 W. Riverside Ave. at the end of the month. (Jesse Tinsley / The Spokesman-Review)
4 Degrees Real Estate is anticipated to close on the sale of the Lerner Building building at 718 W. Riverside Ave. at the end of the month. (Jesse Tinsley / The Spokesman-Review)

Spokane-based 4 Degrees Real Estate is purchasing the Lerner Building in downtown Spokane, with plans to add a new tenant – Lumen High School, the city’s third charter school.

4 Degrees Real Estate is anticipated to close on the sale of the more than 20,000-square-foot, three-story building at 718 W. Riverside Ave. at the end of the month, said Jordan Tampien, who co-owns 4 Degrees Real Estate with his brother, Joel.

Scot David LLC is the current owner of the Lerner building, which was built in 1914 and once housed the Liberty Theater and a Lerner clothing store. It’s now home to Method Juice Cafe, Paint & Pints and The Ridler Piano Bar, which all will remain in the building.

Lumen High School will assist young parents with obtaining an education by offering child care services and classes under one roof. The coursework is blended with life-skills education to help young parents achieve personal, family, college and career goals.

After Lumen High School received charter school certification in June from Spokane Public Schools, it began searching for a building to accommodate classrooms. With the help of Jordan Tampien, Lumen High School stumbled upon the Lerner Building.

“We were just really trying to find something that was affordable and that met our square-footage needs and provided access to transportation,” said Shauna Edwards, Lumen High School founder.

The building was perfect for Lumen because of its proximity to the Spokane Transit Authority Plaza, Tampien said.

“It’s a location students can get to easily,” he said. “A lot of them end up taking STA buses, and it’s across from the STA Plaza.”

Tampien didn’t disclose the purchase price, but the building is valued at more than $1.7 million, according to the Spokane County Assessor’s Office.

Lumen High School will occupy the second and third floors of the building, which will undergo about $800,000 in renovations, Tampien said.

The second floor will accommodate about 10 classrooms, early-learning rooms and office space. The third floor will have additional office space, an indoor play space for children and a multipurpose common area.

Edwards said there are plans to potentially utilize office space for medical and social service providers on a rotating schedule.

Because the school will be in downtown Spokane, it could provide an opportunity for students to participate in internships with nearby businesses, Edwards said.

The Tampiens’ purchase of the Lerner Building will mark their seventh property acquisition in Spokane.

The Tampiens, along with brothers Matt and Ryan Goodwin, are developing a seven-story residential tower at 1309 W. First Ave. The Tampiens are also renovating the former Watts Automotive shop at 1312 W. First Ave. into a brewery, production facility and tap room, which is anticipated to open later this year.

“We’re big believers in being able to activate sites that have otherwise gone vacant,” Tampien said.

Lumen High School aims to move into the Lerner Building in June and plans to welcome its first class of 60 students in September 2020.

“Our hope is the teen parents get to experience education, and also move forward and become leaders in our community and pay it forward,” Edwards said. “We’re really excited to be working with 4 Degrees Real Estate to have a building that’s so accessible for students right in the heart of downtown, and hopefully positively impact the community down there.”

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