The Bulletin has an article today about the development plans for the old Brooks-Scanlon Crane Shed site in the Old Mill District—which some of you may only know as the big, empty lot across the street from the Old Mill Marketplace complex. The gist:
A 50,000-square-foot office building could soon be joining a 105-room hotel and conference center on the former site of the Brooks-Scanlon crane shed near the Old Mill District in Bend.
On the one hand, I’m glad to see some sort of development plans for that spot because frankly, it’s languishing and should have something done to it.
On the other hand, I’m still pissed that the whole reason it’s an empty lot is due to the criminal activities of Crown Investment Group back in August of 2004—when they illegally tore it down under cover of the night.
(You can read a lot about that 2004 event and controversy surrounding the Crane Shed on the Bend Bugle site here. On an unrelated note, I’m glad to see those Bend Bugle archives back online—the Bugle was the print version of the news from the old Bend.com site, almost entirely written and edited by now-KTVZ Digital Content Director Barney Lerten.)
The plan for the new development is to be called “Crane Shed Commons” and offer “a mix of contemporary office space with open and shared spaces… an indoor, shared meeting space, a roof terrace and a small park on the building’s east side.” They will break ground and start construction as soon as they get a building permit, and estimate completion for spring of 2017.
Reading over the Bulletin article there are some items I’d have reservations about in a red-flag sort of way—for instance, “In size, it’s the largest project of its kind built on speculation in Bend in eight years,” emphasis mine, and this:
“If we had 50,000 (square) feet of office space coming on line today, we’d be a little concerned because the rents we could get wouldn’t justify the cost of developing this project,” Schultz said, “but in two years, we’re confident the rents will be significantly higher as the vacancy rate drops.”
But it will be interesting to watch how this develops.