Sometimes I wonder what kind of miracle it took to bring a deal like this to fruition. You have this abandoned, 40-year old warehouse with contamination, structural, and code issues. Nobody wants it. And it’s probably much easier to go somewhere else and just do what everyone else does. You rent space or build a new building. But Jeff Reaves, president of Group MacKenzie, and Jay Haladay, owner of Coaxis, saw major potential in this dilapidated structure now known as RiverEast Center. They decided to buy the property and wanted to convert it to office space for each of their growing company’s headquarters. The result?
At $17 million, which includes a 5% increase in the standard budget for the green features, the owners were able to renovate the building to obtain LEED Gold certification. That’s pretty incredible.
They added tons of new windows with special window glazing, daylight sensors, energy efficient fixtures, and reflective white roofing. The building has hi-tech water fixtures, dual-flush toilets, and an innovative rain water collection system. Plus, they installed 15 bicycle lockers with nine showers, and due to the building’s proximity to bus/rail transportation, their mass-transit ridership increased from 7 employees to over 40.
Deservingly, RiverEast Center has won a slew of awards:
- NW Construction Magazine awarded it Best Green Renovation of 2007
- NW Energy Efficiency Alliance gave the building a Better Bricks award
- American Public Works Association-Oregon Chapter gave it the Julian Prize for its unique storm water management system.
Says Jeff Reaves of the building, "No one wanted to touch this project, but we are pleased to have been able to bring jobs to this industrial neighborhood, save an old building and do it all responsibly."