Spokane Journal of Business

Liberty Lake Children’s Academy plans to expand

Preschool to occupy part of multitenant building in River District development

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Plans are underway to construct a building that will be the second location for a Liberty Lake-based preschool in the River District development.

Teri Finch, owner of Liberty Lake Children’s Academy LLC, says the expansion is necessary because the flagship preschool, at 1322 N. Stanford Lane, consistently reaches its capacity of 178 children and has a waiting list.

“I hate turning people away,” Finch says. “Last January, before registration, our numbers were so high that we thought we’d better start looking.”

The new preschool, to be named Liberty Lake Children’s Academy River District, will be located at 20762 E. Indiana, north of Orchard Park, west of Sweet Annie’s Artisan Creamery ice cream store and Hello Sugar doughnut shop. The River District is a Greenstone Homes development.

Joe Frank, president and CEO of Greenstone, says one other tenant has been identified for the planned 4,000-square-foot building. He declines to identify that tenant except to describe it as a “small community restaurant.”

Frank says the building is valued at about $750,000.

LLCA River District initially will offer two pre-kindergarten classes and three preschool classes, with capacity for 84 children.

Finch says crews are expected to begin work on LLCA River District soon. The new preschool’s single-story, 2,200-square-foot space in a multitenant building will have two classrooms.

Most of the preschool’s staff will take on additional classes, Finch says. However, she expects to hire two or three additional employees for the new location.

The project is expected to be completed by August to give the preschool time to prepare for the September start of the school year.

Liberty Lake-based Greenstone Corp. is developing the 900-acre, mixed-use River District Community, which is bordered by the Spokane River to the north and Interstate 90 to the south, northeast of the Greenacres area. 

Finch says she originally had searched for a larger location to move into, but that didn’t pan out. Instead, she chose to open another preschool in the River District Community. 

“It’s a perfect location for us, as it’s right by a park, as well as right in the neighborhood itself, where families are moving into the community,” Finch says. “They’re younger families, and it’s literally down the street from their houses.”

Finch says that when the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Greenstone asked if she wanted to continue with the project.

“I said, yes, we’d better, because things are going to change,” Finch says. “I didn’t want to miss out on this opportunity.” 

The River District location is taking registration beginning tomorrow, Feb. 12, but Finch says availability will dwindle quickly -- as of the Journal’s press time, parents of 80 children had expressed a desire to register with Liberty Lake Children’s Academy.

However, Finch says Liberty Lake Children’s Academy River District will begin a waitlist, and plans to open one to two afternoon classes, which would serve an additional 30 to 40 children.

Virginia Thomas
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Reporter Virginia Thomas has worked at the Journal since 2017 and covers the banking and finance industries. As a reporter, she loves learning about Spokane's many growing industries. She enjoys travelling with her husband, snuggling with her cats, and cross stitching.

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