The Commodore II
A Historic Rehabilitation in The Dalles, Oregon
Outline of the Project
The Commodore II is a mixed use, four story, multi-tenant commercial and residential building located in The Dalles, Oregon. Outlined below is a recap and explanation of the project.
The city of The Dalles, Oregon is located 90 miles east of Portland on the Columbia River off Interstate 84. The city and county have a long history as a cross roads of development. In the mid-1800's Wasco County stretched from Wyoming to Oregon and Northern California to the Canadian border, the largest ever recorded county in the United States. The city of The Dalles was the county seat. The most prominent feature in the city is The Dalles Dam constructed in the 1930's. This is the longest cement damn in the United States stretching almost a mile in length. The city population is 12,400 (24th largest city in Oregon). Within the Wasco country service area the population is 24,500. With the availability of electricity adjacent to the damn, a number of aluminum smelters and related factories have been long time employers.
The claim to fame for The Dalles is its rich historic nature and an active Urban Renewal District. There is an excellent web site for The Dalles at www.el.com/to/thedalles/ There is a complete historical tour of the area and 48 photos of historic buildings, most of these in the downtown area. The Commodore is photo 26.
Our building is located on Court Street across from City Hall. Most of the downtown buildings have been rehabilitated with the Elks Hall being a recent acquisition and being planned for renovation. This building is also featured on the web site. When the Commodore was built in 1906, it served as a Masonic Lodge.
The area along the Columbia River, which runs adjacent to the city, is a strong attraction for tourism. Approximately 20 minutes to the west is Hood River, the wind surfing capital of the United States. The advantage of The Dalles is its semiarid weather, without the rains experienced in Portland. Across the river in Dallesport, Washington a 500 acre industrial project on the Columbia is beginning construction.
The Commodore is a four-story, 48,800 square foot building located at 312 Court Street on a 12,800 square foot site. The building has an 11,700 square foot unfinished basement and an interior atrium/light well accessible from the second through fourth floors.
The building is the largest remaining commercial/residential structure in The Dalles. It has been vacant since May 1, 1995 due to a number of building code violations and deficiencies in fire and life safety. The building also incurred approximately $150,000 in fire damage on May 21, 1995. It is listed on the National Historic Register.
The Development Concept:
The concept for the building is one of mixed-use components. The first floor will consist of rehabilitated retail spaces, with approximately 8,250 square feet of commercial lease space.
The second floor is targeted to office space for service agencies; a portion of which is targeted to the Mid-Columbia Housing Corporation.
The third and fourth floors are designed as affordable housing units. The fourth will be targeted toward individuals and couples earning 60% MFI, and includes one transitional apartment for victims of domestic abuse. We will make the units available to the Community Action Program (CAP) to operate and manage the transitional home. All of the residential units will be furnished with energy efficient appliances and fixtures, designed in compliance with all ADA, HUD and applicable local planning and building codes. All units will be served with forced air heating and air conditioning.
The basement, which has not been functional in the past, will be restored to house storage, an exercise facility for residents, meeting rooms for tenants and community groups and additional office space. The meeting room is intended in part, to provide classroom space for the service agencies to conduct training, counseling and other services for the residential tenants.
Important elements in the Commodore II project:
Rehabilitation vs. New Construction- The Commodore project is a historic rehabilitation building. This project involves cleanup of exterior walls with demolition and rebuilding of interior demising walls. There is no ground up construction. The mitigation of risk due to weather, unknowns with ground up construction, delays due to complexity and scheduling have been mitigated. With an existing structure, only interior work is required thereby reducing weather and underground risks. Also with an existing structure construction on all floors can occur simultaneously thus reducing the linear progression required in new construction projects.
Construction Progress: As of September 1, 2001 all exterior masonry restoration is done; the storefronts are framed in ready for doors and windows; anew roof is on and the side walks are being prepared for handi-cap access to the retail spaces. The building has entirely refitted with steel reinforcements for seismic protection.
Reconstruction of the interiors is 65% with the major systems of the electrical, plumbing and HVAC all about 70% complete. Tile floors and walls, granite countertops in the restrooms and locker rooms and painting have started. The work is scheduled to be completed in mid-November with a Grand Opening planned for November 22nd and 23rd.
Development and Construction Remaining
From December 1st forward the works involves seismic strengthening, construction of new apartments on the 3rd and 4th floor, installation of a new elevator, repair of windows and doors, interior build-out and roof repairs. The leasehold improvements for tenants will be completed as contracts are signed for the 1st and 2nd floors. Construction of the improvements will be made upon tenant needs with most of these cost funded by the tenants as part of their leasehold package.