Dealership charges into the future with sleek new look
Gresham Ford celebrates the completion of $2 million remodel
Now that the dust is gone and the scaffolding has been removed, its time to celebrate, said Bess Wills, general manager of Gresham Ford.
Were are calling it our Extreme Makeover Celebration, Wills said, laughing. Were going to have popcorn, snow cones and hot dogs on certain days the entire month of August, and were excited to have the community see our new look.
Gone is the low-profile painted building, once home to Greshams only Chevrolet dealership. The sleek new appearance boasts a stainless steel exterior, with Ford Motor Companys new trademark tower entrance, a vast expanse of glass and futuristic interior. The remodel came with a price tag of nearly $2 million and took close to 18 months to complete. Ford requires its dealerships to remodel once a structural change occurs or, in the case of Gresham Ford, a relocation.
Ford agreed to let us move in 2012 with the understanding we would bring the dealership up to their current standards, Wills said. The bones of this operation made it easier to be upgraded, so we only added minimal square footage to the tank room and the waiting room in the Quick Lane center.
I think the biggest difference in our setup now is the Quick Lane. This is really like two businesses on the same property. Weve got the dealership, with sales and service, and a tire and light maintenance store that services all makes and models of cars. Thats what is significantly different since the remodel.
Ford provided Wills with a comprehensive package for the remodel, detailing everything from a color palette and furnishings to the floor plan for where those furnishings were to be placed. Its a standard policy, Wills said, designed to provide a uniform appearance among all Ford dealerships and brand recognition with customers.
But Wills is a strong advocate for supporting local businesses whenever possible. She found a way to marry the auto manufacturers stringent requirements with her passion by petitioning the Ford Motor Company to allow her to use products and services from local companies. Of the 62 contractors and businesses involved in the dealerships remodel, nearly half were from the East County area.
Axis Design Group and Dovetail Construction took the lead on the remodel, with Gresham resident and Axis Designs owner, Tim Brunner, well versed in the intricacies of working with auto manufacturers.
Tim specializes in car dealership remodels, Wills said. He worked directly with Ford Motor Company and the Trustmark guidelines to create a completely remodeled dealership for Gresham Ford and our customers. They also wanted us to buy all our furniture and fixtures from a company in Michigan. I found local suppliers for those things and petitioned Ford to allow us to substitute those products to keep our dollars local.
Members of the Gresham Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Center and city dignitaries joined Wills for an official ribbon cutting Friday, Aug. 8, to kick off Gresham Fords month-long Extreme Makeover Celebration. The event also coincided with a formal announcement acknowledging the Gresham-based Mt. Hood Mustangs and Fords car clubs success in breaking two Guinness World Records in April.
We were proud to be a sponsor of car clubs parade in honor of the 50th anniversary of the Mustang, Wills said. Their achievement shows that world class things can come from Gresham. Were looking forward to being a part of this community when the Mustang turns 100.
Who: Gresham Ford, 1999 E. Powell Blvd.
What: Extreme Makeover Celebration continues through the month of August, with free hot dogs, popcorn or snow cones to visitors at various times.
For more information, call the dealership at 503-665-0101.Add a comment