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Update on Tacoma’s planned McMenamins: Project still a go, consultant says

Post by Kathleen Cooper / The News Tribune on May 18, 2012 at 11:20 am |
May 18, 2012 11:20 am

The McMenamins Elks Temple project is cooking along.

That’s the word from Michael Sullivan, owner of Artifacts Consulting, which is working with the Portland-based brewpub operator to renovate the historic Beaux Arts building downtown.

“Things are rolling along fine,” he told me this morning. “We’ve been waiting on the permits to be issued. The latest drawings have been submitted. All the bids are in. The contractors are contracted.”

After my colleague Lewis Kamb’s report on improvements to Stadium Way, I did my standard check-ins on the project’s progress. I’ve been having a hard time getting Mike McMenamin on the phone, and to be totally honest, I was starting to get a little nervous. Typically when developers don’t call you back, it’s because bad news is on the horizon.

(Also reporters often aren’t developers’ favorite people to talk to, so there’s that to consider. Although I am charming. But I digress.)

Sullivan explained: “They were opening a brand new McMenamins in central Oregon, and Mike has been buried in getting that place opened.”

The demise of the mixed-use project next door, which was to have held 90-some-odd McMenamins hotel rooms, meant some of those rooms had to come back into the Temple. That meant plans had to be redone.

Sullivan said the contractors still believe they can do the work in under a year, keeping with the planned opening next spring.

“I hope so. The scope of work is just so massive. It’s hard to imagine. But they might do it,” he said. “I look forward and think to myself, if we are done by late spring/early summer next year, the timing with the (Murray) Morgan bridge getting open again and the new library building finished at UWT, all those things are starting to align.”

Next year is looking like a good year, indeed.

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