MISSOULA — The city of Missoula issued more than 70 building permits in the month of April, including two projects valued at a combined $8 million.
Despite the coronavirus pandemic, the pace of permitting hasn’t slowed down and construction continues at a number of sites, according to Development Services.
“Things have not slowed down much at all for us when it comes to issuing permits,” said Don Verrue, who came out of retirement to serve as interim director of Development Services until a new director is found.
April’s permits included a 110,000 square foot distribution center at 3299 Flynn Lane. Owned by Summit Beverage, the project is valued at roughly $2.4 million.
The Missoula City Council last December annexed a parcel of property off West Broadway that will accommodate the new distribution facility, along with the regional Veterans Affairs clinic.
Mike Markovich, vice president of community relations for Summit, said Costco purchased the company’s current facility at Great Northern Ave. Costco plans to expand once Summit leaves for its new facility.
The city also issued a permit for the Missoula International School, which plans to build a new building at 800 S. Third Street W. That permit is valued at $5.5 million.
While the school didn’t return calls seeking comment on its plans, it has spent the last few years raising funds for the project. The new facility would enable the school to vacate its current building in the lower Rattlesnake.
A construction fence also has appeared around the former Shopko building in recent days, suggesting that WinCo Foods may be close to starting construction. While the city has not yet issued a building permit for the project, Verrue said he expects to see activity soon.
“They’re changing some things on the outside of the building,” he said. “It’s not much, but it’s enough to have to go through the design excellence review. They’re working on that.”
WinCo completed the purchase of the former Shopko building last September. Calls to the Boise based company were not returned. Construction crews were at the site on Monday.
“Once that (design review) is done, we’ll be pretty close to issuing a building permit,” said Verrue. “But I can’t give you a date on that.”