The Chelan County PUD’s move to Olds Station is a Go. After years of financial analysis, months of customer feedback and a resolution put to a vote, a consolidated service center got the green light, as Marcus Bellissimo reports.
Chelan PUD commissioners voted unanimously yesterday to approve the proposal to consolidate operations throughout Wenatchee into a combined facility on 19 acres north of the Wenatchee River. The decision comes after four years of study that grew out of strategic planning in 2015. It covered the financial analysis of alternatives including staying put, and open houses throughout the county last month, with than 800 people commenting on the proposal.
With the decision to move made, PUD staff will now work on detailed design and on selecting a general contractor/construction manager, said Dan Frazier, Shared Services director. He said staff will return to the board later this year to ask for approval of the general contractor and again next year for final approval of a maximum construction price.
There’s also the question of how the PUD moving to Olds Station will impact downtown Wenatchee. Frazier said the utility, the city of Wenatchee, Port of Chelan County and several downtown stakeholders, including Music Theatre of Wenatchee, will now start planning for the future of the PUD’s Fifth Street campus.
Chelan PUD Board President Garry Arseneault swung by the KOHO studios this morning to talk about the process and what happens next.