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TUALATIN, OR-The Tualatin City Council this week worked through four appeals regarding the redevelopment of the Durham Quarry, a $150-million endeavor by a pair of Northwest owner/developers that will transform 29 acres fronting Interstate 5 into a 680,000-sf lifestyle center.

Of the four appeals to be heard, two related to transportation issues–one by the neighboring City of Durham and another by an individual–were deemed dealt after the developers, Opus Northwest of Bellevue, WA and Center Oak Properties of Gresham, OR, agreed to contribute $300,000 to improve area streets and enhance Lake Oswego’s nearby Lake Grove business district. The other two, related to methane gas trapped beneath the site, were swept out of the way after Opus and Center Oak agreed to strictly follow direction provided by the state Department of Environmental Quality.

Bruce Wood, a senior director with Opus Northwest in Portland, OR, tells GlobeSt.com he expects the DEQ to sign off on a soil management plan any day now, at which point the company will pull its grading permit and begin pushing 250,000 cubic feet of dirt around the site, an effort that will take a few months to complete. Still to come from DEQ is a plan for a long-term remedy of the situation, which needs to come before the end of the year if so building permits can be pulled and actual construction can begin in time for the project to stay on track to open for the 2004 holiday season.

Last week, the project got a big boost when Crate & Barrel committed to opening its first Oregon store at the project. While Regal Entertainment Group was the first to commit to the project with an 18-screen movie theater, Crate & Barrel’s commitment is a big green light for other retailers to join the project. As a result, Wood said last week that tenants for over half of the 464,000-sf first phase will be announced by the end of September.

Opus and Center Oak are acquiring the property from Washington County for $14 million. The development plan is for 40-foot-tall retail buildings wherein mezzanines could be added. A retailer that leases the space could either have 40-foot ceilings or add a second level mezzanine for more retail space, storage or offices. As well, says Wood, a second level space could be leased out to a restaurant that would be accessed through a ground-level storefront. Crate & Barrel will be utilizing a mezzanine level for more retail space.

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