Category: New Location

Yard House restaurant will be accompanied by other additions to The Shops at River Walk

A restaurant isn’t the only new business coming to The Shops at River Walk, but it’s likely to arrive there before anything else does.

Construction workers at the development on the north side of Stockdale Highway just west of Calloway Drive were busy Monday building a future location for Yard House, the chain known for its vast selection of beers, often served in tall glasses, as well as burgers and salads.

Scott Thayer, senior vice president of developer Castle Cooke California Inc., said the 8,870-square-foot restaurant project is coming along well, as is a roughly 1,500-square-foot patio being built for Yard House. But he was not authorized to say when it’s expected to open.

He did, however, share a little bit about what else might be going up nearby.

There’s going to be a new office building, for one thing — a two-story affair measuring 17,000 square feet, Thayer said. He added that final plans for the project have not yet been sent to city officials for review.

In addition, two buildings measuring 5,700 square feet each will be built near the Yard House. But again, he’s unable to disclose who’s going in at those spaces.

Thayer did offer this, though: They’re going to be retail stores.

Once leases get signed — and not before — Thayer said the names of the future tenants will be released.

He said he’d like to share more but that now things are in potential tenants’ hands.

“The longer they take to sign the leases, the longer it’ll take for us to start” construction, he said.

https://www.bakersfield.com/news/yard-house-restaurant-will-be-accompanied-by-other-additions-to/article_1c1f0048-96dc-11e9-9fbb-3b76cba60b46.html

OPENING DATE SET FOR NEW CLOVIS COSTCO; FRESNO ACE OPENS

Photo by David Castellon The new Westlake Ace Hardware at 1536 N. Champlain Dr. in northeast Fresno has opened for business, replacing the Orchard Supply Hardware store.

Published On June 18, 2019 – 11:18 AM
Written By David Castellon

A new Ace Hardware store is open for business in northeast Fresno, while a date in July has been set to open Clovis’ new Costco store.

The final phase or construction is underway for the new Costco on the west side of Clovis Avenue south of Shaw Avenue, one of the busiest traffic areas in Clovis.

The new store will be about 30,000 square feet bigger than the current one, a few blocks west at 380 W. Ashlan Ave.

Plans are to close that store on July 17 and open the new store and gas station the next day, according to a manager, who added that the gas station at the Ashlan Avenue store may stay open awhile after the location closes.

Another new store, the Ace on East Champlain Drive, near East Shepherd Avenue, opened on May 31.

It replaced the Orchard Supply Hardware that shut down there early this year, along with all of the 97 other OSH stores in California, Florida and 0regon.

So far, the former OSH stores on Champlain and in Visalia have been converted into Ace stores under separate management.

Westlake Ace Hardware, an affiliate that now operates 127 Ace stores in 10 states, took over the lease on the Champlain Avenue, and there is speculation that Ace affiliates are eyeing other former OSH stores in the Valley and in other parts of California.

https://thebusinessjournal.com/opening-date-set-for-new-clovis-costco-fresno-ace-opens

TranPak Ground Breaking at Freedom Industrial Park in Madera

Madera, CA – A ground breaking ceremony will be held Monday, July 1st at 11 AM as the City
of Madera welcomes TranPak to the Freedom Industrial Park. Currently located in Fresno,
TranPak will be constructing a new state-of-the-art facility. The new 65,000 square foot building
will allow them to streamline their operations and provide more space to meet the growing
demand for their products.

Span Construction and Engineering has been selected to do the entire design/build of the facility.
Span was founded in 1980 and maintains their home office in Madera. Completion date will be
in March of 2020 and TranPak will be fully operational by April 2020.

The Company was founded in 1994 by Marty Ueland. While Mr. Ueland remains the President
of the Company, his son Christian is the General Manager and runs the day to day operation.
TranPak manufactures its own proprietary pallets and has the largest, most versatile inventory of
plastic pallets, bins, liquid containers in North America for Just-in-Time delivery.

The public is invited to attend the groundbreaking at the site located at the Southeast corner of
Victory Lane and Independence Drive.

New $25M Oakhurst Community College ‘On Schedule,’ Could Open In 2022

OAKHURST – The new $25M Oakhurst Community College Center is quickly taking shape. Late Friday, college officials released an updated project timeline that could have students in classrooms as early as fall of 2022.

According to Darin Soukup, director at the Oakhurst Community College Center, construction is now slated to start late next year — and be completed in the spring of 2022.

“At this point, we’re actually pretty close to being right on schedule,” Soukup said Friday.

Pond on new Oakhurst College site – photo Gina Clugston

The new campus will be located behind the True Value Hardware building and the Mountain Christian Center adjacent to the Madera County Sheriff’s Department substation. The 30-acre development site overlooks a large pond and is framed by sweeping mountain views.

The site was selected, in part, for its access to — and visibility from — Highway 49.

“We had very thorough site selection analysis,” Soukup said. “[The development site] is still part of a wildland urban interface, however the location was determined to be the most defensible in the case of a wildfire.”

New Oakhurst Community College design – photo George Lurie

To be built in phases as the area’s population grows, Soukup confirmed the new center will operate initially from one 28,000-square-foot building. The campus master plan, according to project architect Paul Halajian, will allow for expansion as enrollment and future funding dictate.

Halajian, principal at Paul Halajian Architects, the Clovis-based firm designing the new center, said this week that his team is “just starting the schematic design phase” of the new campus.

“Right now, we’re determining what the first building will look like and how elements like the parking lot, landscaping and common areas will be laid out,” Halajian said. “We don’t want to go in and level the area. We want to work with the natural terrain. This is not going to look like an urban campus.”

By late spring, college officials plan to host another community meeting to unveil final design renderings.

Kim Patten of the LA-based design firm Steinberg Hart – photo courtesy Paul Halajian

Halajian’s firm was selected from a pool of pre-qualified applicants and is teaming with Los Angeles-based architectural group Steinberg Hart on the project. While Halajian is the “architect of record,” Steinberg Hart’s Kim Patten is the lead design architect.

Halajian said he partnered with Steinberg Hart because the firm has “more experience master planning a large campus project.”

Halajian has been the campus architect for Fresno State since 2005 and has designed a number of buildings on campus, including the new Physical Therapy and Intercollegiate Athletics Center. The Valley native also designed the new monument at Fresno State commemorating the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide.

When asked at community meetings held in Oakhurst last month and late last year what they would like the new center to look like, Halajian said participants expressed the greatest interest in a “contemporary style.”

New Oakhurst Community College parcel map

“That was the aesthetic that seemed to resonate most with both faculty and community members,” he said. “It’s not going to look like a log cabin. But [the new center] is going to celebrate nature and natural materials.”

The facility will be designed to include community spaces and offer senior activities. “We want it to be an economic engine for eastern Madera County and place for the community to be proud of,” the architect said.

Oakhurst Community College Center is part of the State Center Community College District (SCCCD), a network of area community colleges that includes Fresno City, Madera, Clovis Community and Reedley Colleges.

The new Oakhurst Center was approved by SCCCD trustees after voters OK’d Bond Measure C in 2016. The facility will replace the current Oakhurst Community College Center, which is adjacent to the Oakhurst Library.

Current Oakhurst college campus – photo Gina Clugston

About 1,050 students are enrolled in classes this academic year at the downtown campus, which uses portable buildings as classrooms.

“The majority of our students are part-time and tend to be older,” Soukup said. “These students, known as re-entry students, are coming back to school needing to be re-skilled because they are desiring a new career path.”

SCCCD officials paid $1.8 million for the new campus site, leaving $23.2 million to spend on design and construction. Halajian said $17.5M is earmarked for construction costs and $5.5M for permits, fees, testing, furniture and equipment.

When completely up and running, the new center is expected to double student enrollment.

For Halajian, the chance to design such an important project is sure to be a career highlight.

“We are really excited to be part of this,” he said. “The building site is absolutely stunning. It’s the kind of site architects just die to work on.”

https://sierranewsonline.com/new-25m-oakhurst-community-college-on-schedule-could-open-in-2022/

HILTI GETS BIGGER HOME IN VISALIA FOR FUTURE GROWTH

Visalia Mayor Bob Link, in the white shirt, shakes hands with Hilti, Inc. employees following a ribbon cutting at the company’s new, larger distribution center at the Visalia Industrial Park. Photo contributedåç

Published On June 20, 2019 – 3:12 PM
Written By David Castellon

If you aren’t in the business of constructing homes, commercial buildings or other structures, chances are you never heard of Hilti.

But in Visalia, the Luxemburg-based maker of professional-grade power tools and other construction products has made a name for itself over the past 24 years as a business and employer in the Visalia Industrial Park.

Now, the company is expanding its presence, having leased a newly-built, 166,000-square-foot building to house its West Coast distribution and Value-Added Service centers.

On Wednesday, the new facility at 4630 N. American St. was opened to local business people and dignitaries for a ribbon-cutting ceremony conducted by executives from Hilti, Inc. — the company’s Oklahoma-base U.S. division — and Visalia Mayor Bob Link.

The Visalia distribution center is the largest of 12 Hilti distribution centers in the U.S. and Canada, covering the West Coast and Pacific Rim.

Among the tasks performed at the Value-Added Service Center are assembling prefabricated parts installed with new walls to prevent the spread of fires and equipment to mount lights and heavy equipment to ceilings.

The European company has eight factories around the world, making tools mostly for commercial-builders, but some Hilti products can be found at Home Depot hardware stores and at about 100 Hilti stores in the U.S.

Hilti vacated two smaller buildings in other parts of the Visalia Industrial Park — which combined offered about 65,000 square feet of space — to move into the new building. Staff, work spaces, inventory and supplies occupy only about two thirds of it, said Patrick O’Connell, vice president of logistics for Hiliti, Inc.

He said sales for the company are on the rise, particularly in the U.S., so moving to a larger building is intended to prepare for growth.

Currently Hilti employs 30 people in Visalia, both at the new building and at a separate tool repair center also in the Industrial Park. While there are no immediate plans to expand that staff, there now more than 50,000 square feet available to make room for added hires and equipment in the future if the growth continues, as expected, O’Connell said.

https://thebusinessjournal.com/hilti-gets-bigger-home-in-visalia-for-future-growth/

Bitwise’s planned expansion into Bakersfield seen as taking the city to ‘the next level’

 

 

John Cox / The Californian

Anticipation was in the air as dozens of Bakersfield business and political leaders jammed into a small room on the second floor of the Padre Hotel Wednesday morning for what was sure to be a big announcement.

Once things got going, levity took over. The two presenters, one of whom stood in front of the crowd while the other spoke via video link from Fresno, made little jokes and took friendly jabs at each other.

The day’s big news, as The Californian reported Wednesday morning, was that downtown Fresno-based tech hub Bitwise Industries had raised $27 million that, among other things, would help pay for the company’s expansion into Bakersfield.

Bitwise’s plans call for coding classes, shared office space and other forms of local investment. Initial operations are expected to begin by early next year, followed by the purchase of a permanent space downtown for Bitwise’s new second home.

There were questions from the audience, naturally. Someone asked why the company chose to expand into Bakersfield as opposed to some other “underdog” city.

“The answer is, we were terrified of what you’d do if we didn’t” come to Bakersfield, quipped Jake Soberal, Bitwise’s CEO and co-founder.

There’s truth in his jest: The company has talked for about two years with local leaders anxious to bring Bitwise’s brand of tech culture to downtown Bakersfield. By now, anything less would have been a big disappointment. Instead, people in attendance saw the news as cause for celebration.

“My initial feeling is this is literally game-changing for the community,” said Kern County’s administrative officer over workforce development, Teresa Hitchcock.

She linked workforce development, a key focus for Bitwise, with local economic development. Her prediction was that local companies will quickly recognize the value of having a training entity come to Kern, and that other individuals will see the value later as they begin to benefit from expanded opportunities.

Bakersfield businessman Morgan Clayton saw substantial promise in Wednesday’s announcement.

“Bitwise has validated we have a starting point,” he said. “We are now connecting to the millennials,” he added, referring to 20- and 30-something-year-olds who have largely embraced digital innovation and its associated business opportunities.

Local economic development chief Richard Chapman, president and CEO of Kern Economic Development Corp., traced the news to a tour he and others involved with KEDC took to Fresno in 2017. That’s when Bakersfield leaders learned how tech hubs can spark new businesses and good-paying careers.

He expressed hope Bitwise will attract other tech companies, which will, in turn, offer internships for local youth with computer programming talent.

David Anderson was optimistic for different reasons. The Bakersfield financial advisor and managing partner at Moneywise Guys noted that downtown has added positive amenities in recent years that could be attractive to tech companies and the kind of people they employ.

Bringing Bitwise into the mix, he said, “takes downtown to the next level.”

https://www.bakersfield.com/news/bitwise-s-planned-expansion-into-bakersfield-seen-as-taking-the/article_40b0f672-92e1-11e9-9911-cb60bd736cf3.html

Hotel construction is booming as developers bet on Bakersfield’s economy

Expectations that Bakersfield’s economy is on the rise have created the city’s biggest hotel boom since the Great Recession.

Half a dozen hotels with a combined 658 rooms are proposed or under construction, all on the city’s west side and many of them extended-stay properties geared toward business travelers. Some of the incoming brands are entirely new to the city.

Hoteliers say the rush of private investment is being driven in part by other local projects, such as the Amazon distribution center under construction near Meadows Field Airport. There’s also a sense the city’s relatively low housing and labor costs have created an incentive to build while the savings last.

IMPROVING CONDITIONS

Conditions in Bakersfield’s hotel market have improved significantly during the past decade — the city’s occupancy rate is up more than six points, average room rates have increased 25 percent and Bakersfield’s hotel room inventory is up 12 percent, according to hotel data tracker STR.

Those numbers alone don’t explain the construction seen in the market lately, said Francois Khoury, general manager of the DoubleTree by Hilton Bakersfield, which is finishing up more than $15 million of renovations that began in April of last year.

He said a bigger factor in the recent investment is anticipation that oil prices are on the way up and that now’s the time to prepare for good times ahead in the local economy.

“Everybody wants to be ready,” he said.

AFFORDABILITY AND GROWTH

Jenny Hlaudy, general manager of The Courtyard by Marriott, sees affordability as bringing investor attention to the Bakersfield market. Land is inexpensive locally, she said, and so are housing costs.

At the same time, the area’s overall growth, combined with large construction projects going on around town, are helping not just hotels but also local restaurants and stores. She said the net effect is a desirable place to build new lodging.

“It’s huge,” she said of the hotel boom. “We haven’t had that much growth, as far as hotels, in many years. … It’s going to truly impact this city.”

One of the new hotels coming online later this year is a 113-room Home2 Suites by Hilton west of Coffee Road near Brimhall Road. Director of Sales Denise Connor said a large housing-residential-retail project proposed nearby, the Bakersfield Commons proposal, is probably one reason why the hotel is being built.

“With the Bakersfield Commons coming in, that is going to bring in potential new growth,” Connor said. She added that new roads projects and the Amazon center are further positive signs that could lead to business for the hotel.

SHARED BENEFITS

David Lyman, manager of Visit Bakersfield, the city’s convention and visitors bureau credited an increase in local events for recent hotel investments, as well as travelers stopping overnight on their way to national parks to the north and south.

Whatever the reason, Bakersfield’s hotel tax — a 12 percent addition to the cost of a room — is now bringing in more money than it ever has. This fiscal year alone the tax is projected to raise $9.7 million for the city’s general fund.

Add that to the money visitors spend on meals and supplies, he said, and the local hospitality industry becomes an economic force that is growing fast.

“These projects create and retain jobs, not just the people who work in the hotels and restaurants,” he said. “We all like to keep that money flowing locally.”

https://www.bakersfield.com/news/hotel-construction-is-booming-as-developers-bet-on-bakersfield-s/article_b7730026-87e1-11e9-8101-2fe0197fa532.html

New logistics center will bring 25 jobs to county

An Israeli company has announced that it will bring 25 new jobs to Oildale. On Monday, the company, Hadco Metal Trading Co., hosted a groundbreaking for a 250,000 square foot logistics center planned to be located near Meadows Field Airport.

“Kern’s thriving logistics and transportation industry is attracting international and national attention to our area,” Supervisor Mike Maggard said in a statement on Thursday. “Kern County and our private sector partners will continue to build upon this excellent news of providing jobs and economic growth.”

Hadco said in a release that it would invest $25 million in the new center, which will be used to distribute metal products to customers located throughout California and the surrounding regions.

“Hadco intends to make further investments in order to further expand the capacity of the plant and increase hiring,” the company said in a news release.

The company currently operates five logistics centers throughout the United States, employing about 150 Americans.

Hadco services machine shops, fabricators and equipment manufacturers. Its main hub is located in the Philadelphia region.

It is unclear what kind of jobs will be available at the new center, or what the timeline is for construction.

The company expects to receive four-to-five trucks carrying materials from suppliers at its Bakersfield facility, and send two to three trucks loaded with materials out each night to transfer stations and customers north and south of the city.

The logistics center will be located in the vicinity of the new Amazon facility currently under construction that is expected to bring 2,000 jobs to the county.

https://www.bakersfield.com/news/new-logistics-center-will-bring-jobs-to-county/article_ad1cac7a-7dba-11e9-b593-8322a6994705.html

What’s happening with Modesto, Turlock’s empty OSH, Toys R Us sites? A lot, actually

 

The empty Orchard Supply Hardware, Toys R Us and Babies R Us sites in Modesto and Turlock, CA all have been sold or leased. OSH sites on Oakdale Road in Modesto and Turlock will become Ace Hardwares. 

Those big empty Orchard Supply Hardware, Toys R Us and Babies R Us buildings dotting Stanislaus County might not be empty much longer.

In April it was announced the owners of Strand Ace Hardware in Escalon were going to take over the former OSH site on Oakdale Road. Work continues on that site, with a planned opening at the end of June. Now another new Ace Hardware is slated to take over the former OSH site on Geer Road in Turlock. A banner went up on the building last month with a planned late summer opening.

Modesto’s second former Orchard site, on Sisk Road, was sold earlier this year to Mad Monk Holdings, LLC, whose Berkeley-based owner also operates Rasputin Music & Movies. The next-door Toys R Us building was sold as well earlier this year, to the Miami-based commercial real estate investment firm Corbin Holdings.

A little further north on Sisk Road, the former Babies R Us site remains vacant, but plans are still moving forward for Rasputin Music & Movies, which currently has a shop on Dale Road, to relocate to the space. The new store will be a combined Rasputin and an Anastasia New & Vintage Clothingstore, both associated with Mad Monk Holdings, LLC.

Strand Ace Vice President Dirk Swanson, whose family has run the Escalon hardware store since 1975, said they hope to open in about three weeks, with a grand opening celebration planned for the last week of June. Staff has been working at the site daily — rearranging, organizing and stocking inventory. The 44,000-square-foot building is a significant step up from the company’s existing 28,000-square-foot store, which will remain open when the new one debuts.

AA Strand Ace Hardware 03.JPG
Strand Ace Hardware owner Dirk Swanson works inside the new hardware store in the former Orchard Supply on Oakdale Road in Modesto, Calif., Saturday, June 1, 2019. Andy Alfaro AALFARO@MODBEE.COM

Swanson said the company has been hiring the 50 to 60 positions needed to staff the new store. There are still a number of positions available and job-seekers should go to the Strand Ace websiteto apply. They’ve already hired a handful of former OSH employees for the new Modesto store as well.

In Turlock, the OSH on Geer Road near California State University, Stanislaus, closed last year when the largely West Coast brand was dissolved by its parent company, Lowe’s. In all, five Orchard Supply stores in the region were shuttered: two in Modesto and one each in Turlock, Manteca and Sonora.

The space, in the same complex as a Michael’s and Big Lots, has been stripped down to the studs inside. A spokesman for Mentzer PR Group, which is representing Ace Hardware, said a soft opening is planned for late summer. The new store will be owned and operated by a a subsidiary of Ace Hardware Corporation.

MR Ace Turlock 1.JPG
The former site of Orchard Supply Hardware on Geer Road in Turlock, Calif. The building is being converted into an Ace Hardware. Marijke Rowland MROWLAND@MODBEE.COM

The Illinois-based hardware company has more than 5,200 hardware stores in about 70 countries. Ace stores have been filling empty Orchard Supply buildings up and down California, including recent stores in Fresno and Thousand Oaks.

The other former OSH building in Modesto on Sisk Road remains empty and boarded up. According to county property records, the building was purchased by Mad Monk Holdings in February. The holding company is run by Berkeley entrepreneur Ken Sarachan, who operates the new and used music/movies chain Rasputin and new and used clothing store Anastasia. He also owns several buildings along Berkeley’s famed Telegraph Avenue.

Sarachan purchased both the old Babies R Us space and OSH store on Sisk Road this year. In February it was announced that the Modesto Rasputin store, which has been located two doors down from Trader Joe’s on Dale Road since it opened 2014, would move to the empty Babies R Us site. The new space will be a merged Rasputin and Anastasia store. At the time representatives had hoped to make the move this spring, but the company has gone through restructuring since. Rasputin stores in Stockton, Fairfield and Newark have closed.

MR Ace Sisk.JPG
The former site of Orchard Supply Hardware on Sisk Road in Modesto, Calif. Marijke Rowland MROWLAND@MODBEE.COM

Modesto store manager Ryan Hewitt said while the move to the new space is still planned, there is no set date yet. He said staff have been clearing out the old Babies R Us store, which was owned by now-defunct parent company Toys R Us, and still had fixtures and other furniture inside. They plan to hire more employees to staff the new site, and are looking for clothing buyers in particular. Interested parties should email hiring@rasputinmusic.com.

Hewitt said the company has not announced what it plans to do with the Sisk Road Orchard Supply site yet. But for the time being, it has been used to store items from the closed Rasputin locations and other sites.

Next door to the old Orchard Supply on Sisk Road, the Toys R Us building also remains vacant. But it too was purchased earlier this year by an outside buyer.

Corbin Holdings picked up the property in late December 2018. The privately held Miami real estate investment firm has purchased a string of old Toys R Us/Babies R Us buildings in California, Iowa, Connecticut, Virginia, Florida and Louisiana. The company website touts the purchase of the approximately 46,000 square-foot building in Modesto just of Highway 99 for its high-traffic location between Vintage Faire Mall and the nearby Walmart and Kohl’s stores.

https://www.modbee.com/news/business/biz-columns-blogs/biz-beat/article231051258.html

Bitwise 41 in Downtown Fresno taking shape

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) — Bitwise 41 in Downtown Fresno is taking shape. Offices are getting closer and closer to completion in the building formerly known as the Old Spaghetti Factory.

“We are inside, so the glass is in, lights are up, doors are on, windows are set and you can tell it is starting to look like a finished building which is super exciting,” said Channelle Charest with Bitwise.

The new building is adding to Bitwise Industries growing footprint in Fresno. They have four campuses total and two of them are currently under construction including Bitwise 41 on Ventura and R street. It’s located just steps away from the Hive and State Center Warehouse.

“Accessibility is key, anyone can get here, it is super easy to see right off the freeway and it is a historical building in Fresno,” said Charest.

Business FresYes Realty has already announced they’re moving in along with 150 agents, they’re taking up the entire second floor. They’re not the only ones, Express Employment Professionals is also calling the building home and, More tenants are on the way. Bitwise is staying tight-lipped but is dropping some hints.

“It will be a mix of our base tech tenants which is great,” she said. “They will be focusing on education and also expanding our startup community in Fresno as well.”

In addition, they’ll also have others moving in that will support their current occupant base. Bitwise 41 is scheduled to open August 1st of this year.