REI to Build a Connected Campus that Brings the Outdoors InBellevue, WA
Outdoor co-op to relocate its headquarters to the Spring District in Bellevue, Wash. in 2020
SEATTLE – September 30, 2016 REI announced that it has finalized an agreement to relocate its headquarters to a section of the Spring District in Bellevue, Wash. Having announced intentions in March, the deal is now complete. The vision is to create a hub that is accessible, sustainable and connected to the local outdoor community.
“We aspire to create something unexpected that embodies our co-op values. We’re envisioning a sustainable, transit-friendly, urban neighborhood that blends working space with green space, takes inspiration from the community around it, and connects to the rest of the Puget Sound area,” said Eric Artz, REI’s executive vice president and chief operating officer.
“After 28 years in Kent, we have outgrown our current headquarters. So, we will build a campus as a gathering place that fosters creativity and connects thousands of increasingly mobile employees,” Artz continued.
Founded in 1938 in Seattle, REI has deep roots in the Puget Sound community. In 2016, the co-op invested nearly $750,000 in outdoor places and causes in and around the Puget Sound area, including grants to Northwest Avalanche Center, Washington Trails Association and Evergreen Mountain Bike Alliance. The co-op also opened a new store at the nearby Bellevue Shopping Center earlier this month, relocating its Redmond location to better serve more than 126,000 active co-op members in the Bellevue area.
“We look forward to the ongoing dialogue with regional leaders on optimizing local outdoor spaces and commuting infrastructure, especially protected bike lanes,” Artz said.
The Spring District will be a walkable, green community with multi use, office and residential space, including the University of Washington’s and Microsoft’s Global Innovation Exchange and a brewpub space. REI’s partners for the new campus include Wright Runstad & Company (developer), NBBJ (architect), Lease Crutcher Lewis (builder) and Hornall Anderson (creative).
“We couldn't be more thrilled that an organization with such strong roots in the Puget Sound community has selected the Spring District for its new headquarters. The values of the co-op, particularly around sustainability, align strongly with the values that are represented in the Spring District,” said Greg Johnson, president of Wright Runstad & Company.
“Creating a new home for REI is an exciting opportunity to rethink the future of work to help it better serve and connect with its employees, members and community. Offices should blur the boundaries between work and play, indoors and outdoors, public and private, adventure and rest. REI is the perfect partner to work with to design a campus that reflects this spirit of exploration and conservation,” said Mindy Levine-Archer, principal at NBBJ.
"REI means so much to the region and to many of us personally. We're also proud to be part of this outstanding project team," said Troy Bloedel, vice president at Lease Crutcher Lewis.
Notes to editors:
• The co-op currently employs more than 1,400 on its campus in Kent, Wash., where it has been located since 1988, and several satellite offices throughout the Puget Sound area.
• REI will develop eight acres of land in a section of the Spring District, between SR 520 and Bel-Red Road.
• REI is ranked one of Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work For and Glassdoor’s 50 best places to work. Both organizations recently recognized the co-op again as one of the 20 Best Workplaces in Retail.
• REI was advised by Heartland, LLC, a Seattle-based real estate advisory and investment firm, in this transaction.
About REI: REI is a specialty outdoor retailer, headquartered near Seattle. The nation’s largest consumer co-op, REI is a growing community of more than 6 million active members who expect and love the best quality gear, inspiring expert classes and trips, and outstanding customer service. REI has 146 stores in 35 states. If you can’t visit a store, you can shop at REI.com, REI.com/REI-Garage or the free REI shopping app. REI isn’t just about gear. You can take the trip of a lifetime with REI Adventures, a global leader in active adventure travel that runs 170 custom-designed itineraries on every continent. REI’s Outdoor School is run by professionally-trained, expert-instructors who teach beginner- to advanced-level courses about a wide range of activities. To build on the infrastructure that makes life outside possible, REI invests millions annually in hundreds of local and national nonprofits that create access to–and steward–the outdoor places that inspire us.
1500 Jefferson Building Awarded The International Outstanding Building of the Year (TOBY) in the Government Building CategorySeattle, WA
SEATTLE July 6, 2016 – Wright Runstad & Company announced that the 1500 Jefferson Building in Olympia, Washington was awarded The Outstanding Building of the Year (TOBY) in the Government Building category at the 2016 Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) International Conference & Expo held in Washington, DC. To win this prestigious award all properties must first win local and regional competitions. The properties are judged on overall property management excellence in such key areas as engineering, sustainability, emergency preparedness, community outreach and tenant relations.
Wright Runstad & Company has managed 1500 Jefferson since it opened in 2011. Wright Runstad & Company also developed 1500 Jefferson in a public private partnership called the “Developer Model” with the State of Washington and the National Development Council. A similar public private partnership was also employed by the same partners to develop Edna Lucille Goodrich Building in Tumwater, Washington.
The six story, 240,594 square foot Class A office building is occupied by two State of Washington agencies, WaTech and Department of Enterprise Services. These state agencies enjoy the value of a high tech office building, excellent customer service, conference and training center with advanced audio visual equipment, secured bicycle storage, shower facilities, employee lounge areas and a deli/restaurant. The thoughtfully landscaped 8.8 acre grounds also compliment the adjacent residential neighborhood. “The 1500 Jefferson building is a real asset for the Great State of Washington,” said Judy Fitzgerald, Chief Financial Officer of WaTech. “Its 21st century design accommodates all types of working arrangements, supports all types of employee needs and provides public access to the grounds and deli. There are about 950 people who areproud to work in this building each day. The building demonstrates the value of public service and the pride Washingtonians take in their civic spaces."
Designated a LEED Platinum building by the US Green Building Council, the 1500 Jefferson Building is also known for its operating cost savings and sustainable features in HVAC, plumbing, electrical and water consumption without sacrificing operational quality. Environmentally progressive, the 1500 Jefferson Building promotes long term sustainability by use of recycled materials in its interior finishes. Building systems feature state of the art HVAC controls, lighting system, dimming perimeter lighting, integrated shades and occupancy sensors all contributing to a high Energy Star rating of 92 and Energy Use Index of 50 (the national average is 67.3, the lower number the better). The onsite property management team also works closely with state agencies and service providers to continually energize a strong recycling and compost program that diverts more than 56 tons of material from landfills every year.
Wright Runstad & Company would like to thank the National Development Council, the State of Washington, BOMA International, BOMA South Puget Sound chapter, the property management team, state employees and our industry partners who care for the building and state agencies every day.
This was the second international TOBY win in the Government Building category for Wright Runstad & Company and the National Development Council. King Street Center, located in the Pioneer Square neighborhood of Seattle and occupied by King County, earned the international TOBY in 2005.
About Wright Runstad & Company
Seattle-based Wright Runstad & Company develops, acquires, manages and leases high-quality commercial office buildings located primarily in the Pacific Northwest. The company is in its fifth decade as one of the region's premier real estate development and operating companies, delivering outstanding property performance and superior investment returns. Wright Runstad & Company maintains an exceptional reputation among tenants and institutional investors for its demonstrated commitment to integrity and high levels of quality and service. For additional information visit: www.wrightrunstad.com
About BOMA International
The Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) International is a federation of 91 BOMA U.S. associations and 18 international affiliates. Founded in 1907, BOMA represents the owners and managers of all commercial property types including 10.5 billion square feet of U.S. office space that supports 1.7 million jobs and contributes $234.9 billion to the U.S. GDP. Its mission is to advance a vibrant commercial real estate industry through advocacy, influence and knowledge. Learn more at: www.boma.org.
Click here for a pdf of the press release.
Wright Runstad & Company Announces 1.5 Acre Purchase within The Spring District by AMLI ResidentialSeattle, WA
SEATTLE February 29, 2016 – Wright Runstad & Company, developer of the 36-acre Spring District in Bellevue, today announced that AMLI Residential Properties (“AMLI”) purchased Parcel 17, nearly 1.5-acres of land, for residential development. The sale extends Wright Runstad & Company and Shorenstein Properties’ strategy to work with leading multifamily developers to construct the residential property in The Spring District.
“This is a strong endorsement of The Spring District as Bellevue’s emerging walkable neighborhood,” said Greg Johnson, Wright Runstad & Company President. “AMLI Residential is a national leader in luxury apartment construction and sustainable development.”
AMLI purchased 1.47 acres to develop a single residential building with approximately 220 units. The property is located in the southwest corner of The Spring District, just north of Security Properties’ first development phase, encompassing just over 300 units.
“The Spring District is the most exciting new development on the east side,” said Scott Koppelman, Senior Vice President at AMLI. “The progressive and environmentally conscious design matches our philosophy for building green and creating greater value for the larger community.”
AMLI is working with GGLO Architects and Rafn Construction to design and develop the site. Construction is expected to start in early 2017 with completion by early 2019.
About The Spring District
The Spring District, a new urban neighborhood in Bellevue, is a high density, transit-oriented mixed-use development of office, residential and retail space, parks, and diverse local retail.
For additional information visit: www.thespringdistrict.com.
About Wright Runstad & Company
Seattle-based Wright Runstad & Company develops, acquires, manages and leases high-quality commercial office buildings located primarily in the Pacific Northwest. The company is in its fifth decade as one of the region’s premier real estate development and operating companies, delivering outstanding property performance and superior investment returns. Wright Runstad & Company maintains an exceptional reputation among tenants and institutional investors for its demonstrated commitment to integrity and high levels of quality and service.
For additional information visit: www.wrightrunstad.com.
About Shorenstein Properties LLC
Founded in 1924, Shorenstein Properties LLC is a privately-owned real estate firm active nationally in the ownership and management of high-quality office properties, with offices in San Francisco and New York. Since 1992, Shorenstein has sponsored eleven closed-end investment funds with total equity commitments of $7.9 billion, of which Shorenstein committed $648.5 million. Shorenstein uses its integrated investment and operating capabilities to take advantage of those opportunities which, at the particular time in the investment cycle, offer the most attractive risk-adjusted returns. Investments have included ground-up developments, asset repositionings and stabilized assets; investment structures have included asset acquisitions, mezzanine loans, preferred equity investments and structured joint ventures. These funds have invested in properties totaling 56.7 million square feet in transactions with a gross investment value in excess of $13.4 billion.
For more information, visit www.shorenstein.com.
Click here for a pdf of the press release.
Seattle Dept. of Planning and Development Issues Master Use Permit Decision for Rainier SquareSeattle, WA
SEATTLE December 3, 2015 – Wright Runstad & Company today announced that the Seattle Department of Planning and Development (DPD) issued the Master Use Permit (MUP) decision for the Rainier Square redevelopment project, part of the University of Washington’s Metropolitan Tract in downtown Seattle. The mixed use project includes a tower of 58 stories containing more than 750,000 square feet of office space and approximately 200 apartment units. The project also includes 30,000 square feet of distinctive restaurants and retail shops and a 155 room premium hotel, which will be in a separate 12 story building in the mixed use complex. Parking for more than 1,200 cars will be provided in a new underground garage.
“This is a big milestone for Rainier Square,” said Greg Johnson, president of Wright Runstad & Company. “The Master Use Permit is the culmination of the city’s land use and design review and public comment period. The design incorporates feedback from the design review board for a bolder and more dramatic sweeping curve up the east face of the tower. The exciting visual interplay between the new tower and existing Rainier Tower makes Rainier Square a strong compliment to one of the city’s most iconic buildings.”
The project will contribute approximately $11.5 million for affordable housing, the preservation of open space, and support for childcare and landmarks in Seattle.
Union representatives from the Iron Workers, Carpenters and Operating Engineers labor organizations expressed support for the Rainier Square redevelopment project. “Not only does Rainier Square provide jobs for our union members but also reflects the pride we all feel in the great buildings of Seattle,” said Jeff Glockner, Business Manager Iron Workers Local #86. “We congratulate Wright Runstad on this milestone and look forward to building the new Rainier Square.”
The University of Washington owns the Metropolitan Tract in downtown Seattle, containing approximately 11 acres, or more than four city blocks, where the original university was located before moving to its present location in 1895. In addition to Rainier Square, the Tract includes buildings such as the Fairmont Olympic Hotel, the 5th Avenue Theater and the IBM Building.
“It’s an exciting time in our urban core, with a really wide range of activity that will transform this area of downtown,” said Downtown Seattle Association President and CEO Jon Scholes. “From streetscape improvements to new retail, restaurants and large-scale developments there’s a lot of momentum here, and a number of these projects are contributing to affordable housing, providing even greater benefit to the community.”
The Rainier Square redevelopment project is being designed by architecture firm NBBJ. Construction is planned to begin in early 2017 with the first tenants occupying the tower portion of the project in late 2018. “We are seeing strong office and retail tenant demand for Rainier Square,” said Johnson. “We have several active negotiations underway, including with a major hotel operator.”
About Wright Runstad & Company
Seattle-based Wright Runstad & Company develops, acquires, manages and leases high-quality commercial office buildings located primarily in the Pacific Northwest. The company is in its fifth decade as one of the region's premier real estate development and operating companies, delivering outstanding property performance and superior investment returns. Wright Runstad & Company maintains an exceptional reputation among tenants and institutional investors for its demonstrated commitment to integrity and high levels of quality and service.
For additional information visit: www.rainiersquare.com
Click here for a pdf of the press release.
Global Innovation Exchange Coming to The Spring DistrictBellevue, WA
The Spring District was selected by The University of Washington as the location for a new international educational institution called the Glocal Innovation Exchange or "GIX" for short. To learn more about this exciting project, check out these articles.
- The Wall Street Journal, 6/18/15 - U.S., Chinese Universities to Launch Technology, Design Program
- The New York Times, 6/18/15 - University of Washington and Chinese University Unite to Form Technology Institute
- Bloomberg, 6/18/15 - Microsoft Funds University of Washington, Tsinghua Tech Program
- MarketWatch, 6/18/2015 - U.S., Chinese universities to launch technology, design program
- The Seattle Times, 6/18/15 - UW, top Chinese university to run tech program in Bellevue
- The Seattle Times, 6/18/15 - New UW-China institution in Bellevue boosts region’s tech standing, diplomatic relations
- VentureBeat, 6/19/2015 - Microsoft plows $40M into a new science and technology institute in Seattle
- PC World, 6/18/15 - Chinese university opens Microsoft-backed U.S. outpost
- PC Magazine, 6/19/15 - Microsoft Funds Joint University Program
- CIO, 6/18/2015 - Chinese university opens Microsoft-backed U.S. outpost
- Network World, 6/18/15 - Chinese university opens Microsoft-backed U.S. outpost
- Xconomy, 6/18/15 - Tsinghua, UW, Microsoft Partner for Global Innovation Exchange
- GeekWiare, 6/19/15 - GIX: What’s next for the new U.S.-China tech institute in the Seattle area
- GeekWire, 6/18/15 - UW and China’s Tsinghua Univ. creating tech grad school in Seattle area, with $40M from Microsoft
- Puget Sound Business Journal, 6/18/15 - EXCLUSIVE: Microsoft exec: New international tech institute in Bellevue will redefine region
- Puget Sound Buiness Journal, 6/18/15 - Bellevue's mega Spring District lands Microsoft/UW venture GIX as first major tenant
- Bellevue Reporter, 6/18/15 - Global Innovation Exchange coming to Spring District | UW, Chinese university partner for research, problem-solving
- UW Today, 6/18/15 - UW and Tsinghua University create groundbreaking partnership with launch of the Global Innovation Exchange
- University of Washington, 6/18/15 - UW, Tsinghua University and Microsoft to create pioneering university, encourage students to think big, change the world
- University of Washington, 6/18/15 - Introducing GIX - A Video
- Inside Higher Ed, 6/19/15 - From Beijing to Puget Sound
- The Seattle Globalist, 6/19/15 - UW teams with ‘MIT of China’ on new tech program in Bellevue
- OnWindows, 6/19/15 - Microsoft helps launch new Global Innovation Exchange partnership
- Microsoft Blog, 6/18/15 - The Global Innovation Exchange – a groundbreaking new partnership
- South China Morning Post, 6/19/15 - With Microsoft's backing, Tsinghua to become first Chinese university to offer master's degree in US
- Shanghai Daily, 6/18/15 - Top Chinese, U.S. universities launch Global Innovation Exchange Institute in Seattle
- Global Times, 6/18/15 - Top Chinese, US universities launch Global Innovation Exchange Institute in Seattle
- Beijing News Media, 6/18/15 - Tsinghua University of Washington set to join Microsoft Innovation Institute invested $ 40 million
- China.com, 6/18/15 - Tsinghua University of Washington in the United States set up to bring innovative college funding Microsoft
- US China Press, 6/18/15 - Microsoft's $ 40 million to help build innovative Tsinghua University & UW Exchange School