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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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The Dirt: Tacoma-based Wooden City coming to Spokane with new restaurant in Genesee Building

By Megan Rowe and Amy Edelen The Spokesman-Review

Tacoma-based Wooden City is expanding to Spokane with a restaurant slated to open in April in the historic Genesee Building.

Renovations began in November to transform the building’s ground floor into the 8,000-square-foot restaurant at 821 W. Riverside Ave.

Longtime Seattle restaurant industry veterans Abe Fox and Jon Green opened Wooden City in he heart of downtown Tacoma in 2018. Green, who is Wooden City’s chef, previously worked at The French Laundry in Napa, California, and Gramercy Tavern in New York City.

Fox was drawn to Spokane last year after visiting friends who relocated to the area.

“I loved everything about the city, and there’s a lot of good things going on,” he said, adding he found the Genesee Building through an online property search.

Although Fox will reside in Tacoma, he plans to make frequent trips to oversee the Spokane restaurant. Green, who relocated to Spokane, will oversee restaurant operations.

Wooden City’s concept and menu will be similar to the Tacoma location, which serves wood-fired pizza, burgers, salads, lamb bolognese, steak and potatoes, and small plates, such as oysters on the half shell and smoked salmon toast.

The Spokane Wooden City, upon completion, will contain a dining area, bar and a mezzanine with room for additional tables. There will also be an event space on the mezzanine level.

The project contractor is Craven Co., of Spokane, which purchased the Genesee Building for $700,000 in 2015. The project architect is Spokane-based Uptic Studios.

Craven began renovations in 2016 on the building, which is listed on Spokane’s Register of Historic Places. The 125-year-old building contains four loft-style apartments on the upper floor and is among the last remaining structures from downtown Spokane’s commercial core in the 1890s. – A.E.

Comcast planning Valley location, remodeling Division

Comcast is planning to remodel its Xfinity retail store on Division Street as part of a more than $4 million investment to expand the company’s brick-and-mortar footprint in the state.

The company is adding more than 1,400 square feet to the store at 4423 N. Division St., in addition to remodeling the existing 2,100-square-foot space.

Comcast is remodeling the store to “make the customer experience better and more convenient” by providing more space with hands-on displays to showcase Xfinity products and services, according to a company news release.

Renovations are slated for completion by summer.

Comcast also announced plans to open seven retail stores this year, including one in Spokane Valley.

The stores – ranging from 1,600 to 3,000 square feet – will be staffed by trained technology specialists who can help customers manage their home WiFi, among other things.

The new store would be the first corporately-owned location in Spokane Valley. A Comcast authorized dealer operates a store at 1510 N. Argonne Road.

The company has not yet confirmed a location for the new Spokane Valley store.

The new stores will bring the total number of Xfinity locations to 25 in the state. Comcast has built or redesigned more than 400 stores nationwide since 2015. – A.E.

PrimeSource to build

new branch in downtown

PrimeSource Credit Union is planning to build a larger branch in downtown Spokane.

The Spokane-based credit union has filed a preliminary application with the city to build a two-story, 5,800-square-foot branch at 428 E. Third Ave.

The new structure would replace the credit union’s existing 3,800-square-foot branch, which would be demolished.

The credit union plans to occupy the new building’s ground floor and lease the upper floor to a prospective tenant, according to the application.

The project is valued at $2 million. Spokane-based ALSC Architects is the project architect.

PrimeSource Credit Union, formerly Telco Credit Union, was founded in 1935 by employees of the Pacific Telephone Co.. The credit union expanded its membership eligibility to all Washington residents in 2002 and opened its corporate headquarters at 9707 N. Nevada St. in 2005.

PrimeSource Credit Union also has a branch in Spokane Valley. – A.E.

Yoga studio Lotus Spokane

to relocate to Fifth Avenue

George Thomsen of Vanguard Contracting is preparing an unoccupied building on East Fifth Avenue for a yoga studio tenant, though there is space for a second tenant. Thomsen said The Lotus Spokane, currently on East Sprague Avenue, will move its operations to 3026 E. Fifth Ave. in May.

The building is across the street from Fresh Soul, a restaurant that opened in summer 2018. Both establishments are within the scope of the 5th Avenue Initiative, an effort by various stakeholders to engage with the city about revitalizing Fifth Avenue.

“I think there’s a lot of momentum, people who want to see the neighborhood involved in their own area,” Thomsen said. “I think the businesses around here are excited to just see a more active neighborhood happening.” – M.R.

Contact Amy Edelen at (509) 459-5581 or

Megan Rowe may be reached at (509) 459-5382 or

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