Sherwood to hire economic development director
To say the least, business in Sherwood is booming as retailers, service industry providers and industrial interests all make moves into the city.
And nothing is lost on the fact that the city is moving to further enhance its attractiveness to outside business interests.
"We're just about to hire a new economic development manager," said Sherwood City Manager Joe Gall. The city has been without an economic development manager since around 2011 when the position was eliminated due to budget cuts.
Gall said the position is important because of the Sherwood City Council's renewed emphasis on economic development. Under a new plan, that position will be under the city's community development director.
"We're pretty excited," he said.
That sentiment is shared by Corey Kearsley, executive director of the Sherwood Chamber of Commerce.
"I think it will be good to have a direct connection for the city and for the existing businesses," he said.
The position is expected to help out too as the city moves forward with light industrial and commercial development of the Tonquin Employment area, a 300-acre parcel along the 124th Avenue extension.
At the same time, Kearsley said he's pleased with the increasing retail ventures throughout the city as well as the fact the city is updating its comprehensive plan, a document that guides and plans future growth.
"I think for me … it's a very positive outlook for Sherwood, just based on what we got going for us," said Kearsley.
Coming soon as well is Sherwood's first hotel, a Hampton Inns and Suites planned for Meinecke Parkway at Highway 99W.
"I think it will do really well," said Kearsley.
He's said he's also appreciative that of the fact the city is trying to bring in more high-paying, living-wage jobs, something that could aid in the fact that more than 90 percent of those who live in Sherwood, leave during the day to work elsewhere.
In his short time as chamber director, Kearsley said he's impressed with how everyone pitches in for such events and festivals as Cruisin' Sherwood, Sherwood Wine Festival, the Robin Hood Festival, Music on the green and Sherwood Main Street activities such as the Art Walk and Halloween celebrations..
"I really appreciate the cooperation and partnership of the businesses working together and supporting each other and the events," he said.
One of the bigger projects in the city at the moment is completion of the 54,000-square-foot Langer entertainment complex, Langer's: Since 1879, located on Langer Farms Parkway.
The complex will feature bowling, laser tag, a rock wall and ropes. Plans are for an October opening with a grand opening celebration planned for Oct. 25, featuring the band Hit Machine.
Gall said the Langer development will be a plus for the city.
"That whole area is continuing to develop and I think folks are really excited about (Matt Langer's) entertainment center."
Langer, whose family is developing the project, said he's thrilled to watch the structure go up.
"It's amazing to see upwards of 100 people working on the site each day and watch the project evolve hourly as new finishes are installed at an incredibly fast pace right now," Langer said in an email. "You can walk (though) the building/site in the morning and return for an afternoon tour discovering new work complete that only started after my morning visit."
He said an electric go-cart track is planned for 2021 but it could open sooner and he's looking forward to seeing the faces of families when they first walk through the new center.
"We love Sherwood and believe families here deserve the very best in entertainment and I think we're prepared to deliver them an impressive facility to enjoy in early October."
At the same time, other businesses have selected Sherwood for their retail pursuits.
Among those are Hobby Lobby, which only needs tenant improvements before moving into the old Haggen Food Grocery Store/Albertson's complex at Tualatin Sherwood Road and Highway 99W.
"The building permit is ready to go," said Gall about the arts and crafts store that operates in 46 states.
At the same time, what's believed to be a fast-food restaurant with dual drive-through lanes is slated for a corner of the former Hagen at complex's parking lot. Gall said speculation is it could be a Chick-fil-A.
Also, the popular Love Bites by Carnie is in the process of expanding its operations along Century Drive.
Meanwhile, the 46,000-square-foot Cedar Creek Plaza complex behind Providence Medical Group's Sherwood facility, has several new business either open or set to locate there including an OnPoint Community Credit Union, a Starbucks coffee shop with a drive through and Mud Bay, an employee-owned pet store.
Also in the plaza will be Cupcake Couture, which is owned by Sara Whitfield and Samantha Bergey. This will be the second location (there's another in McMinnville) for the women's boutique that features clothing for women of all ages.
Already up and running at the site are a Planet Fitness, Hops 'n' Drops and IHOP.
By Ray Pitz
News Editor, The Times/Sherwood Gazette
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