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News / Business / Clark County Business

Main Street site in Vancouver to be modernized

Former Penney locale to be overhauled for retail, offices

By Anthony Macuk, Columbian business reporter
Published: November 1, 2018, 6:01am
3 Photos
The updated Evergreen International Plaza will be a modern office and retail building known as The Quinn.
The updated Evergreen International Plaza will be a modern office and retail building known as The Quinn. Cascadia Development Partners Photo Gallery

The vacant four-story building at the corner of Main Street and Evergreen Boulevard — formerly Evergreen International Plaza — is slated to receive an overhaul, modernizing it into a retail and office building that the developers plan to call The Quinn.

Cascadia Development Partners, a Vancouver-based commercial real estate development company, is leading the project with the Fuller Group serving as the Realtor for the interior spaces. Plans for the proposed remodel are outlined on the company’s website.

The two upper floors of the 40,000-square-foot building would become offices, while the 10,000-square-foot ground floor would be available for retail. The 10,000 square feet in the basement would be converted into an underground parking garage.

Some of the ground-floor retail space might include sliding retractable window panels to create storefronts, and Cascadia’s website describes the spaces as ideal for “restaurants, coffee shops, bank branch and high impact retailers.”

The redesigned building would have a “modern urban” feel, the website says, with high open ceilings, exposed mechanical ducts and original wood floors. But the project would add a number of updated features including a new elevator, bigger windows, a modern ventilation system, new skylights on the third floor and a rooftop deck and terrace for office employees.

The project has been in the planning stages for at least a year and the project partners are preparing to apply for development permits, with the goal of finishing the project next year, said Doug Bartocci, a partner at Fuller Group.

There are tenants signed to the building, Cascadia Development President David Copenhaver said, adding that he could not yet share their names or reveal further project details.

Cascadia was founded in 2014 and focuses on commercial building projects in the Portland area and Southwest Washington. The company is known in Vancouver for The Uptown mixed-use residential development on Main Street as well as The Esther, another mixed-use residential building planned near Esther Short Park.

The Evergreen International Plaza building was built in the mid-1950s as the home of the Vancouver J.C. Penney, which moved from its original 806 Main St. location. The store closed in 1981, a few years after Vancouver Mall opened with J.C. Penney as an anchor tenant. The downtown building was subsequently renamed and converted to offices.

Some of the more recent occupants include Arthur Murray Dance Studios, Evergreen Publishing and Pacific Continental Bank, but the building has been vacant for the past four years, according to Vancouver’s Downtown Association President Steve Becker.

“We’re just delighted to see that corner come alive,” he said in reference to The Quinn.

A wall on the building’s north side features a mural depicting pilot Valery Chkalov at Pearson Field, which was painted in 2008 through a partnership involving the Clark County Mural Society. The Quinn project webpage doesn’t mention the mural, so it’s unclear whether it would be maintained.

Columbian business reporter