Clallam PUD gets permit for Costco property

Clallam County Public Utility District can begin moving its warehouse operations into the former Costco building in Carlsborg next year after the Clallam County hearings examiner approved the change of use application for the property last week.

"I think people will be pleasantly surprised at how it turns out," said Clallam PUD commissioner Hugh Haffner on Friday.

Clallam County Public Utility District agreed in September to pay $3.8 million for the 14-plus acre property and 72,000-square-foot building formerly occupied by Costco Wholesale at the southwest corner of Hooker Road and U.S. Highway 101 in Carlsborg.

The district plans to use the building as its main warehouse and possibly build a new headquarters west of the building.

Clallam PUD's current headquarters is located at 2431 E. Highway 101, east of Port Angeles.

"Now we'll start doing the renovations and meeting the permit conditions so we can actually start using it," Haffner said.

During the annual PUD meeting last week in Seattle, Doug Nass, Clallam PUD's general manager, received many positive comments from other PUD managers about the purchase, Haffner said.

"One manager said his PUD had a similar opportunity but passed it up and regretted it later on," he said.

The decision released Dec. 1 included 14 conditions such as ensuring there's enough water without using a well, ensuring the septic system doesn't need expanding and creating a visual buffer along U.S. Highway 101 and the property's western edge.

It also requires a state Department of Transportation permit to access U.S. Highway 101, ensuring firefighter access to the outside storage area and developing plans for parking, lighting, signage and stormwater control.

Clallam PUD must be using the property within three years or the permit will be revoked unless a one-year extension is granted.

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