Astoria brewery expands downtown

| Print |  Email
Articles - September 2010
Friday, August 20, 2010
0910_ATS01
A new 30-barrel brewing system will expand capacity at Fort George Brewery. // PHOTO COURTESY OF FORT GEORGE BREWERY

Fort George Brewery is set to fire up its recently installed 30-barrel brewing system by the end of September, an expansion in the blighted area of downtown that is paving the way for new jobs.

The brewery purchased the Fort George and Lovell buildings and other nearby neglected property in October 2009 for $1.65 million, aided in part by Small Business Administration loans. In July, it received a forgivable loan of $150,000 from the Governor’s Strategic Reserve Fund to set up facilities to can beer, expected to be operational by the end of the year. The loan comes with the requirement to create at least 12 full-time positions by 2014. “They’ll be across the board: working in the pub, on the canning line. We plan to have a marketing person in Portland promoting our products,” says Fort George co-owner Chris Nemlowill.

City and local business advisory groups such as Clatsop Economic Development Resources are enthusiastic about the broader implications of the brewery’s expansion to downtown Astoria. “It will bring people downtown. I look at it as people working and shopping downtown. It’s putting uses to formerly vacant buildings,” says Astoria community development director Brett Estes. The 1921 Lovell building, which houses the expanded brewing operation, had been empty since 2002.

In addition to a $120,000 Urban Renewal Development (URD) loan from the city for electrical and structural upgrades, Fort George also received a $30,000 grant from the agency for aesthetic improvements. “Grant money goes to projects with definite effects. It helps remove the blight,” Estes says. With the brewery expansion, Fort George will increase its production capacity from about 1,000 barrels a year to 6,000.

Fort George leases space in its buildings to Fernhill Glass and the Blue Scorcher Bakery & Cafe. “We try to surround ourselves with synergistic business. It draws people to the block and helps all of us,” Nemlowill says. “We’re creating a truly public house for locals.”

PETER BELAND
 

More Articles

Political theater

News
Wednesday, January 07, 2015
0107-orbizplansum14-thumbBY LINDA BAKER | OB EDITOR

The Oregon Business Plan Leadership Summit drew more than 1,000 people to the Oregon Convention Center yesterday.


Read more...

5 companies react to lower fuel prices

The Latest
Thursday, January 15, 2015
thumb-shutterstock 233787049BY JACOB PALMER | OB DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

Consumers love the savings they get from low oil prices, but how has business been affected?


Read more...

Editor's Letter: Tortoise and the Hare

February 2015
Monday, January 26, 2015

The day after this issue goes to press, the city of Medford will host its annual business conference. The event features Minoli Ratnatunga, co-author of the Milken Institute’s annual “Best-Performing Cities” report. Preliminary data suggests that Medford is likely to retain its No. 1 ranking among best-performing small cities for having a higher concentration of high-tech firms than the national average. 


Read more...

Labor Pains

February 2015
Monday, January 26, 2015
BY AMY MILSHTEIN

Thinking about starting an internship program? Be careful. Navigating unpaid internships can be tricky.


Read more...

Free Falling

Contributed Blogs
Thursday, December 18, 2014
121714-oilprice-thumbBY JASON NORRIS | OB CONTRIBUTOR

The implosion of the energy complex: The best thing for low oil prices is low oil prices.


Read more...

Corner Office: Steve Tatone

January-Powerbook 2015
Saturday, December 13, 2014

Seven tidbits about the president and CEO of AKT Group.


Read more...

See How They Run

January-Powerbook 2015
Friday, December 12, 2014
BY LINDA BAKER

Studying ground-running birds, a group that ranks among nature's speediest and most agile bipedal runners, to build a faster robot.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS