VANCOUVER, WA-A suburban-style class A office building is under development at the north end of the city, near the confluence of Interstates 5 and 205. Local developers Ralph Smith and Richard Young are erecting the three-story, 22,500-sf University Plaza in the Salmon Creek neighborhood, next to Kaiser Permanente at 14508 NE 20th Ave. General contractor Cedarlake Company Inc. broke ground on the $4.8 million project last week.

Local dentist Dr. Eugene Sakai, a partner in the project, is the building’s first signed tenant. Sakai is taking about 3,000 sf in the building. The rest of the building, expected to go in similarly-sized chunks, is available at $22.75 persf per year (full service), or $23.75 per sf for medical space, says listing broker Kirk Robertson with Portland-based Norris Beggs & Simpson. Robertson says he has so far taken calls from a learning institution, a medical doctor and an engineering group.

“The fact is that most newer office buildings built here in the past 15 years have been located in the Vancouver Mall area or East toward Fisher’s Landing,” says Robertston. “No real attention has been paid to north part of city until just recently. This should provide product for people looking to be closer to their residence.”

The focal point of the structure, designed by architect John McKinney, will be a glassed-in, open staircase topped by a gabled roof. The building’s exterior finish will utilize something called Cearea System, a resin compound with an appearance similar to granite. Completion is scheduled for May 2001.

Currently, the first floor is slated for parking. If the rest of the building leases up and there are still interested parties, Robertson says the first floor would be turned into another 10,000 sf of office space and the parking would be accommodated elsewhere.

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