CHD moves into new quarters

By Bill Rautenstrauch, The Observer March 03, 2010 01:51 pm

A sizable crowd turned out for Thursday’s open house at the new CHD building, 2301 Cove Ave. The health and social services agency moved into the building, formerly The Rock Bowling Alley and Fun Center, Feb. 1. CHRIS BAXTER/Observer photos
A sizable crowd turned out for Thursday’s open house at the new CHD building, 2301 Cove Ave. The health and social services agency moved into the building, formerly The Rock Bowling Alley and Fun Center, Feb. 1. CHRIS BAXTER/Observer photos
A stranger in town visiting the Center for Human Development’s new headquarters would have a hard time guessing the place used to be a bowling alley.

CHD, a private non-profit organization that provides Union County residents with a a broad array of physical and mental health services, is settled in at 2301 Cove Ave., former home of The Rock Bowling Alley and Fun Center.

Beginning last August, the building was completely renovated, partitioned to house various CHD departments including public health services, home visiting services, environmental health, alcohol and drug services, veterans  services and developmental disabilities case management.

Once, people stepped into a wide open building to the clatter of bowling pins and the click of billiard balls.

Now, they step into a nicely-appointed lobby that includes a reception area, and they follow carpeted corridors to clinics and offices providing health and social services.

“It’s amazing how fast the contractors changed this place,” said Mark Kubin, CHD’s emergency preparedness coordinator.

And, amazing how fast CHD completed its move from the Joseph building once the work was completed. The move began Jan. 29 and was completed by Feb. 1.

Last Thursday, CHD and Community Bank co-hosted an open house to show off the new digs. A steady stream of people came through the doors and took the tour.

Roni Wood, CHD’s operations coordinator, said the main floor is 17,500 square feet in size. There is also storage space upstairs.

“Size wise it’s not much bigger than what we had, but there’s not much wasted space,” she said.

The old location, the Joseph building, was formerly a hospital. It was converted years ago for use by CHD, Union County Circuit Court and other agencies.

CHD had long ago outgrew the place. With the move complete, the improvement in surroundings is vast, said Kubin.

“I would say this is a healthier space for our clients. The surroundings are far warmer than a very old hospital,” he said.

Added Wood, “With the colors and design, it’s much more welcoming.”

Combining its own funds with grants, plus financing from Community Bank, CHD bought the building from Steve Rzonka. Those funding sources also paid for renovations.

Rzonka, who owned The Rock, is a Bend-based contractor. His company, Eagle Mountain Construction, Inc., was the lead contractor in the project.

Local subcontractors shared in the work. Those included Cross L Welding, Cox Contracting, Dale Ault Painting and Drywall, Fred Daggett Plumbing, AC Electrical Construction and Grande Ronde Sign Co.

“In addition, Eagle Mountain hired several local employees to work throughout the renovation project,” said Wood. “It was important to CHD and Eagle Mountain Construction to contribute to the local economy as much as possible on this project.”

Though CHD is completely ready to receive clients in the new building, there is still some work to be done.

One major project on the to-do list is demolition of the go-cart track outside. Some old signage needs to be changed, and inside, there’s some minor touch-up left.

A staff lounge is yet to be finished. CHD is collecting donations for that project.

CHD employs about 90 people, including doctors, nurses, social workers, counselors and other health and rehabilitation specialists.

They are more than happy with their new facility. During the open house, Amy Frederick of Public Health Services showed off new exam rooms that looked comfortable, clean, professional.

“It’s good to have a nice new space with lots of storage,” Frederick said.