When Ralph Affatati takes on a building project, he sets out to construct something that will last virtually forever – and that’s exactly what he had in mind with his new 7,400 square foot warehouse in the Redmond Airport Business Center.
Constructed out of thousands of concrete blocks, including two tones of split-face blocks on the exterior to give the building a sharper look, this air-conditioned warehouse at 2606 SW Fourth St. is built to stand the test of time.
“This building is something my grandkids will be able to enjoy,” said owner Affatati, who designed, built, and developed the warehouse. The building includes two units with the larger one taking up approximately 3,250 square feet.
Each unit includes showroom and office space, as well as ample warehouse space. Three 12 by 14 foot doors ensure easy access for trucks to load and unload materials and cedar shingles soften the concrete exterior.
Affatati said he is dismayed that the cities of Redmond and Bend still allow the construction of metal buildings – a practice that has virtually ceased in most urban areas. Because his building has thick concrete walls, it will last longer and gain in value.
“What really surprises me, even in Bend, they use block for the first four feet and then go to a metal building,” he said. “Why not just finish building in block? Yeah, you save 15 to 20 percent on the cost of the building, but as the years go by, it doesn’t hold up as well and it’s not as secure.”
In contrast, Affatati’s warehouse building is currently worth about $1.5 million and he said he expects that to increase to about $3 million over the next 10 years.
“That’s the way things are going in this area,” he said. “Now houses have taken a dive, but commercial real estate is booming.”
Affatati has spent more than 40 years in the development business and said designing buildings is second nature to him.
“When I drive by an empty lot, I already see the building,” he said. “As soon as I see the property I already know what I want to put on it. So I get some sketch paper and a pencil and I start making some sketches. I do a couple of drawings and decide if it is going to work and if there’s enough square footage. For the cost of the property and the cost of construction, you have to build something that’s going to balance out the living room that you’re going to have in a building.”
Affatati has been working with leasing agent Bob Shive, owner of Shive and Associates LLC, for five years on almost 10 projects.
Shive said the smaller part of the new building has already been leased and he doesn’t anticipate any problems finding a business to lease the larger portion. “At the recent real estate forecast breakfast, everybody there was recommending Redmond as the place to look into and to watch and I think it’s going to take off here again this year,” he said. “It’s been steady. We have a lot of inventory coming online and there are also buildings bigger than this.”
Shive said at $1 a foot, the price is right to lease the building and the location can’t be beat. “Location is a big thing,” he said. “We’re close to the airport and everybody wants to be near the airport for shipping and traffic. Plus it’s a quality building. Metal buildings are just not the same standard of quality and they’re basically the same price.”
The building’s first tenant, Bend Indoor Garden Supply (BIGS), opened their showroom at the location April 2. BIGS sells everything to control environment to grow indoor plants, including soils, mixes, hydroponics, lighting, duct fans.
Nicholas Beaudoin, who co-owns BIGS with wife Ashley, said they are excited about the new location, particularly because they are in need of warehouse space.
“We were having a lack of space and we wanted to expand to Redmond anyway,” he said. “So this is going to work out perfectly.”
Beaudoin said the location was their biggest draw. “We picked the location because it was close to all of our shippers,” he said. “Almost every trucking company is there, the airport is there. So it’s a high traffic area.”
Affatati said several businesses have already expressed interest in leasing the remaining space and he doesn’t foresee it being empty for long.