Spokane Journal of Business

McKinstry affiliate agrees to buy U District land

Transaction to be completed later this summer

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A McKinstry Co. subsidiary has agreed to acquire land for continued development of Spokane’s University District.

Avista Development Inc., the development arm of Spokane-based power company Avista Corp., plans to sell a 1.5-acre parcel along the north side of the 500 block of East Sprague Avenue to the subsidiary, Emerald Initiative LLC. The parcel is part of the U District’s South Landing.

The parties didn’t disclose the terms of the sale, which they say they expect to be completed later this summer, according to a joint media announcement released on Wednesday, July 8.

A Seattle-based construction and energy-efficiency contractor with operations in Spokane, McKinstry is designing and building the mechanical, electrical, plumbing, data, and fire-protection systems for the 159,000-square-foot Catalyst Building at 601 E. Riverside, just east of the site Emerald Initiative is acquiring. Both the site and Catalyst neighbor the south landing for the University District Gateway Bridge.

“We are excited for the opportunity to be a part of the growth and innovation happening in Spokane and University District,” says Dean Allen, McKinstry’s CEO and Emerald’s principal, in the press release.

The company isn't disclosing plans for the site at this time.

Avista Corp. CEO and President Dennis Vermillion says the company is confident Emerald Initiative will continue to build on the goals of former Avista CEO and chairman Scott Morris in creating a highly energy efficient complex in the U District.

“We believe they will build on the momentum of what we’ve started, continue to champion transformation and innovation, and further enhance the economic vitality of our community,” Vermillion says in the press release.

The Catalyst Building and neighboring Scott Morris Center for Energy Innovation are scheduled to be completed this summer.

Emerald Initiative also is developing the new Regional Health Partnership building for Gonzaga University and the University of Washington in Spokane at 840 E. Spokane Falls Blvd. at the southwest corner of Spokane Falls Boulevard and Hamilton Street.

Kevin Blocker
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