MISSOULA — The Brooks Street corridor will continue its transformation from dilapidated movie theaters and defunct shopping centers to a place of business and commerce when a new office building breaks ground in the coming weeks.
Stockman Bank, which plans to open its new Brooks Street location next month, recently sold a parcel of land behind its new branch, where Envision Commercial Construction plans to build a three-story executive office building with commercial condos.
“It’s really going to be a nice addition to the back part of that property,” said Bob Burns, the Missoula market president for Stockman Bank. “You’ve seen a lot of development on the other side of Brooks Street for a number of years now. This drastically improves what used to be a pretty dilapidated corner on a critical corridor coming into Missoula.”
Brian Walker, president of Envision Commercial Construction, said work will start in coming weeks at 2315 McDonald Avenue once the city completes its building permit. The project includes 38,000 square feet on three floors with a full basement.
“It’s going to be commercial condos – condo space for lease or purchase,” Walker said Tuesday. “We have about 65 percent of it under contract. It remains to be seen with the balance of the 35 percent that’s unsold how many total suites it will be broken into.”
As planned, the commercial suites will range from 2,700 to 5,000 square feet in size, though smaller suites will be available. Plans call for completion in June 2020.
A number of changes have come to the Brooks Street corridor in recent years, most of it on the southern edge. Several years ago, the Woodbury Corp. razed the old Kmart store and replaced it with the South Crossing development, which includes a mix of popular retail and dining options.
Stockman is in the final stages of completing work on its new three-story branch, while a number of new additions have landed in and around Southgate Mall, including the AMC dine-in theater and Bridge Pizza.
Future plans call for additional housing, while other projects are rumored. Mountain Line has plans to launch 15-minute service along the corridor.
“The Brooks Street corridor has seen a lot of growth in the last five years, when you look at things like South Crossing and Stockman going in there and getting rid of the old structures,” said Walker. “We’ve been building in Missoula for about 20 years now, and we’ve got a dedicated customer base over in that area that wants office space, but it’s been next to impossible to find.”
Stockman was also sold on the Brooks Street corridor, prompting it to invest roughly $15 million in its new bank. That facility will include a mix of tenants and a training room large enough for 100 people in the basement level.
A ribbon cutting is set for Oct. 2.
“Missoula has been good to us,” said Burns. “We’ve been well received by Missoula, and we continue to grow our customer base. Brooks is such a critical corridor, we needed something for our customers that was more convenient, so they could do their business day to day.”