Sandy planners pick projects at hearing closely to code

by: CONTRIBUTED PHOTO: - From left, Stan Bower and Jean Stevens of Fresenius Medical Care; Sanford Jones of Champion 26 LLC; Pamela Gramenz of Clackamas Federal Credit Union; Jim Turner,  of Physicians Capital Investments; and Jerry Crosby of the Sandy Planning Commission represent their organizations at the outstanding development awards at Sandy City Hall. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO Several business development projects in Sandy were honored recently for what Planning Director Tracy Brown says was “doing the right thing.”

The new-construction honorees for 2012 were the Arco AM-PM fueling station near Champion Way and the new building behind Jack in the Box, which was financed by Physicians Capital Investments. Fresenius Medical Care will use that building, which is still being constructed inside the exterior shell. The interior work, which isn’t a part of this award system, will prepare the Fresenius facility to offer dialysis services.

The remodeling honoree was Clackamas Federal Credit Union, which altered an existing building for its use as a new branch in Sandy.

These businesses, evaluated by the Planning Commission, were put on a pedestal to show the community and other developers it is possible to build or remodel buildings that match the goals of the city’s Sandy Style and go through the system with very few exceptions to the code.

Sandy Style places its emphasis on architecture that makes use of stone and wood. This Cascadian architecture can be seen all over town. It’s part of the city’s brand, its trademark.

Brown said the buildings the commission selected were the businesses that came to the city with plans that nearly matched Sandy Style and were most easily adapted to the criteria the commission ordered.

Beyond new construction, Brown said, a remodeling project isn’t expected to meet the same criteria as new construction.

Outside of any objections from neighbors or other local residents, these projects sailed through the city’s processes, ensuring that everything the builders did met the municipal code requirements, Brown said.

“They did everything we asked them to do,” he said.

This is the fifth non-consecutive year these awards have been presented since businesses were required to meet at least minimum standards.

In previous years, other outstanding development awards have gone to businesses such as Jack in the Box, Panda Express and Cool Printing.

The commission hasn’t been recognizing the façade improvement projects that the city initiated and paid much of the cost for, Brown said, because the city hired the same designer for all of them and used similar workers.

The Planning Commission developed the annual award program to bring public attention to high-quality building projects within the city, Brown said, and to honor those individuals responsible for making these projects happen.

For more information, call Brown at 503-668-4886.

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