On going roadwork along 15th street and upper Main immediately after you enter Vancouver from I-5 is causing regular traffic slowdowns, but doesn’t seem to be hurting business. I went and had some a morning beverage at Compass Coffee last week. Spoke with owner Bryan Wray as there have been earth moving machines and holes in the road along his stretch of Main for a couple of weeks. Bryan says in spite of the project, they’ve had some of their busiest days ever.
His customers are willing to walk a few blocks to visit the warm confines and get that special Compass flavor. Other downtown developments are counting on that “walking “traffic to help their success.
I wrote an article in the VBJ last June entitled “Gateway to Downtown – don’t drive past it”. Talking about the impact four local families are having on the twenty square blocks that make up a corridor as you enter Vancouver from I-5. We’ve seen Ellie Kassab’s Prestige Plaza mixed use, multi-story multifamily project go from groundbreaking to ribbon cutting and now open for residents. I understand tours of the suites are frequent and the spaces are filling up.
One block west at the former city hall, the facades have totally changed giving it a more open modern look. According to Tom Shimoto the broker for the project they are also having many discussions with prospective tenants.
Meanwhile an article in the Columbian this week says Ellie Kassab has his Prestige Plaza project on the market and that the Fort Vancouver apartments are also on the market and actually under contract.
Permitting work goes on for David Copenhaver’s six story housing project on 17th and Main at the former Dulin’s restaurant site, as does the multifamily project on 15th and Columbia.
All this activity and permitting work has triggered significant discussion of parking and impacts on traffic flow, by property and business owners all along this corridor as it provides not only the major entrance to downtown, but to the Port of Vancouver as well.