While some South Sound businesses struggle in this economy, others are moving forward with new developments. Tacoma Lutheran Retirement Community and Daffodil Storage both celebrated project starts at the end of April that not only show their businesses are doing well, but that there is still construction happening in the region.
Daffodil Storage broke ground recently on its newest self storage location at the corner of 38th and Union Avenue, formerly home to  a police headquarters. The 100,000-square-foot, four-story structure will house more than 800 radiantly heated storage units, provide upper-floor access via extra-large, street loading elevators and state-of-the-art security.
More than 30 people braved the chilly weather to attend the ground-breaking. With construction workers in the background, company officials took a few minutes to invite neighbors, Daffodil customers from other stores, as well as local community leaders to the construction site to announce their positive news.
“The addition of a new storage at the corner of 38th and Union, while architecturally revitalizing the neighborhood, will ultimately fill a much needed gap of self storage for business and residential customers in this area,” said Jeff Oldright, operations manager.
Officials have also announced that over the next eight to 10 months the company will likely spend more than $7 million and utilize more than 100 construction workers on the job. Indirectly, this will have a significant financial impact, they said, on many individuals and businesses in the manufacturing, retail and service sectors throughout the Northwest region.
One of the facility’s unique features will be a 35-foot aisle passing through the ground floor, which will provide customers with a safe, well-lit and dry load- and unload-area.
“The Daffodil Storage facility is a unique project that offers a progressive example of storage facilities that are properly integrated into an inner-urban commercial district,” said Jon Graves of Jon Graves Architects & Planners PLLC. “The design, greatly driven by the owners’ vision, breaks stride with the typical box-like storage facilities by incorporating diverse and interesting forms and architectural characteristics.”
The company will also offer truck rentals, packing and moving supplies, mail box rentals, shipping, and conference and office space for lease.
Meanwhile, Tacoma Lutheran Retirement Community broke ground April 28 on the first “green” senior wellness center in Pierce County, with an audience of about 120 watching and cheering.
The Emerson Wellness & Clark Aquatic Center will be about 5,000 square feet with an exercise room, an exercise therapy pool and a spa therapy pool. The estimated cost of the project, including all fees and taxes, is $2.245 million.
“It means an awful lot,” said Paul Opgrande, TLRC president and CEO, about the ground-breaking. “It’s something we’ve been looking forward to for a number of years.”
The architect for the project is BCRA and the construction company is Rushforth Construction. The new facility’s estimated completion date is October 2009.
Besides last week’s ground-breaking, Tacoma Lutheran Retirement Community also began a remodel earlier this year of its health center, as well as construction of a new main entrance.
The community also just completed its 2009 annual surprise survey from the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services Aging and Disability Services and reports having been found deficiency free.