Thursday, January 13, 2005

Lennar spruces up Building 117, fills it with offices, light industry

By RACHEL RASKIN-ZRIHEN, Times-Herald staff writer

After several months of renovation and marketing, Mare Island's Building 117 is now fully occupied, according to a Lennar Mare Island spokesman.
Located along the waterfront at Nimitz and Seventh Street, the 41,000-square-foot, 20-year-old former shop building now provides office and light industrial space ranging in size from 1,300 square feet to 10,000 square feet, said Lennar spokesman Jason Keadjian.

The renovation cost about $400,000, he said.

Construction included work on the building's roof, interior renovations and repairs to such systems as plumbing, he said.

Keadjian said about half the building's tenants are new to Vallejo; the rest are either transplants from elsewhere in the city or expansions. All told, the building's tenants bring about 40 new jobs to the island, he said.

Hal Pierce Electric, a longtime Vallejo contractor, said he was the first business to set up shop in the newly renovated building. The timing couldn't have been better for him, he said.

"I was the first one in the building," Pierce said. "We've been here since March. Before that, we were at 520 Broadway since 1947. My grandparents built the building in 1947, and the family sold it. That's why I moved."

Pierce said relocating has worked out well, and that watching the building and Mare Island in general beginning to thrive has made him excited about the future.

"It's wonderful," Pierce said. "I'm elated to be here. Lennar's been great to work with. And it seems like in just the past couple of months, the building has really filled up. The residential aspect of the island is getting off the ground.

"I think it's a sign the economy's finally improving. I feel more confident than I did even two weeks ago."

That's the kind of thing Lennar likes to hear, and hopes to hear more of in months to come, Keadjian said. "Lennar continues to evaluate, and where appropriate, invest money in capital improvements to Mare Island buildings," he said.

- E-mail Rachel Raskin-Zrihen at or call 553-6824.

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