Spokane Journal of Business

Restaurants & Retail: Steam Plant restaurant reopens in downtown Spokane

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Downtown Spokane’s iconic Steam Plant has reopened with a freshly renovated interior, and new rooftop event space.

Spencer Sowl, facilities operations and property manager for the Avista Development, says the historic building at 159 S. Lincoln closed in July to allow time for renovations, as well as a rebranding of its signage and logos courtesy of Spokane-based creative firm helveticka.

Avista owns both the Steam Plant and the neighboring Seehorn building, and also owns and manages the Steam Plant’s restaurant.   

“It’d been 17 years since the last renovation, so some updates were needed,” says Sowl. “But we realized this was also an opportunity to freshen the interiors and add new things.”

As part of the renovations, Sowl says the building’s main-level restaurant has been renamed Steam Plant Kitchen+Brewery, and reconfigured to include built-in booths and a bar with both table and booth seating.

Sowl says the restaurant’s kitchen also was enlarged and redesigned as an expo space, allowing diners to view the cooking process as they wait.

He says the restaurant also has a new menu and all new staff, including general manager John Lockhart and executive chef Steve Leonard.

Sowl says renovation work at the Steam Plant also included adding a new rooftop event space to the third level of the adjacent Seehorn building.

“There are two new open areas up there with unique views of outside,” he says. “The space can hold up to 150 people, and all food is catered by the restaurant.”

LeAnn Bjerken
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Reporter LeAnn Bjerken covers health care at the Journal of Business. A Minnesota native and cat lover, she enjoys beachside vacations and writing poetry. LeAnn has worked for the Journal since 2015.

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