Wells Fargo building

An iconic building in Spokane that's hard to miss amongst the city skyline has a new owner.

Washington Trust Bank and Inland Northwest Health Services have reached an agreement for the purchase and sale of the Wells Fargo Center building and adjacent parking structure and lot on 601 W. First Ave in Spokane. The transaction terms weren't disclosed.

The 192,000 square-foot building is located across the street from Washington Trust's headquarters on Sprague Ave. The name of the building will continue to be Wells Fargo Center. All current tenant leases will transition to Washington Trust while the building's property manager will continue providing her services.

“Washington Trust is excited about maintaining a major presence in downtown Spokane, and investing in this building demonstrates our continued commitment to the downtown core and greater Spokane community,” said Peter Stanton, Washington Trust’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “We have grown significantly in recent years, and our downtown headquarters are no longer large enough to house all of our Spokane-based employees. We have a strong culture and we believe that bringing everyone together will help maintain that vibrant culture while also offering our employees Class A office space in downtown Spokane.”

INHS is the largest tenant of the building and currently occupies about 45 percent of the space. INHS and Providence Health Care plan to transition from their current occupied space in the building to a new location over a three-year period.

“Being able to sell this building to Washington Trust Bank keeps local ownership of one of the largest commercial office buildings in downtown Spokane,” says Elaine Couture, MBA, BSN, RN, chief executive officer of Inland Northwest Health Services and executive vice president & chief executive of Providence Washington & Montana. “This allows us to remain focused on our core health care business of serving patients and customers, and investing capital dollars into life-saving and life-changing equipment, programs and services.”

Washington Trust potentially could occupy a portion while leasing excess space for the building, currently at 85 percent capacity.

The transaction is expected to close by April 19. The Wells Fargo building, which first opened in 1981, had been acquired by INHS in a foreclosure sale in 2012.

The Wells Fargo Center is the second-tallest building in Spokane at 244 feet. The Bank of America Financial Center is the tallest at 288 feet.