Real Estate Blog

What’s up with all that construction? Here are 10 projects in the works

The site of the future United Health Centers is a bustle of activity with earth moving and foundation-setting underway at Herndon and Brawley avenues, Friday Feb. 9, 2018.
The site of the future United Health Centers is a bustle of activity with earth moving and foundation-setting underway at Herndon and Brawley avenues, Friday Feb. 9, 2018.

Dirt is moving, concrete is pouring, and buildings are going up on some long-vacant lots across Fresno. Soon, you’ll see gas stations, restaurants, apartment complexes, and a funeral home pop up.

“Economic activity is robust and it’s across the entire city, all being driven by market forces,” said Mayor Lee Brand.

Here’s a look at what’s coming based on city applications and planning documents. Developers are not asked for completion or opening dates, so be patient. Construction projects are notorious for delays.

▪ The last empty corner at Stanislaus Street and Van Ness Avenue in downtown Fresno will be the site of work lofts and apartments. It was used recently as a parking lot, but many will remember that it was a boarded-up gas station for years.

Upside Enterprises, led by Mark Astone of Catalyst Marketing, removed the underground gas tanks this week. The project is still in the design phase.

▪ In northwest Fresno, the empty lots around Sierra Sky Park will soon start to fill up. The city council on Thursday approved a project at Herndon and Blythe to allow the construction of three commercial pads for future buildings, including a drive-thru restaurant.

▪ Down the street, United Health Centers is building a 57,000-square-foot administrative building on the northwest corner of Herndon and Brawley avenues. About 150 people will work out of the office, including senior executives and employees from other administrative departments, patient referral services and the call center. There is room for expansion.

The Neenan Company based in Colorado is the design and build partner for the project. The building is expected to be finished late this year. The health center’s existing administration building in Parlier will be renovated into a new health center.

▪ Across the street, on the southwest corner of Herndon and Brawley, the dirt on an old fig orchard is being graded for a Chevron gas station with 12 pumps and a convenience store. An attached car wash is also planned.

Timbers support walls under construction at an office complex as construction worker Napoleon Gonzalez passes through at Herndon and Palm avenues, Friday, Feb. 9, 2018. JOHN WALKER

▪ In a new building at Palm and Herndon avenues, tenant improvements have started on the new Steinway Piano Gallery of Fresno, formerly Valley Music Center. Dutch Bros. plans to open its sixth Fresno location on one end of the building. Butterfish poke restaurant is also working on opening its second Fresno spot (it has a restaurant in Clovis too) on the other end. A 2,100-square-foot space is available for lease.

A second building on the busy corner, along Herndon Avenue, is under construction. It will be offices for Guarantee Real Estate.

▪ The city’s first Hyatt Place hotel is under construction east of Highway 41, just south of Alluvial Avenue. The 130,000-square foot facility will have 124 rooms, a pool, Jacuzzi, gym and restaurant. The hotel is expected to open in 2019.

Concrete worker Victor Mandujano breaks through hard ground as he prepares to set a form at the Starbucks and Kabab City building on Nees Avenue, east of First Street, Friday Feb. 9, 2018. JOHN WALKER

▪ In northeast Fresno, a 9,175-square-foot funeral home is planned for 2.5 acres behind the ARCO gas station near First and Nees avenues. The city has received inquiries, but no formal application, about possible apartment projects on the rest of the land.

Construction continues on Starbucks’ new home on Nees between Walgreens and Sakura Chaya. Kabab City, a Middle Eastern restaurant, has signed a lease for the building.

▪ Granville Homes has started work on a 162-unit apartment project called “Brookside” on the northeast corner of Millbrook and Nees avenues. The development will have a clubhouse and leasing office, private garages and a pool.

▪ Spencer Enterprises is building a 320-unit apartment complex near the northwest corner of Willow and Herndon avenues with community building, pool, garages and carports. A commercial development is planned for the rest of the property, but the city has not received any applications yet.

▪ Trucks are moving in and out of 20 acres of land on the northwest corner of Shepherd and Willow avenues where a mixed-use commercial and multifamily development is under construction from Vincent Ricchiuti of Heritage Development Company. The plans call for more than 250 units and 34,800 square feet of commercial space with activity areas, a paseo for outdoor dining and a corner patio area.

BoNhia Lee: 559-441-6495, @bonhialee