FRESNO – Dignitaries including CEO of the Economic Development Corporation serving Fresno County Lee Ann Eager, Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin, California High-Speed Rail Authority CEO Jeff Morales and others celebrated the official opening of three floor’s worth of offices in downtown Fresno’s historic building The Grand. The floors now house the design, construction and management teams for the initial 30-mile segment of high-speed rail in the country, which will be between Madera and Fresno.
Tutor Perini/Zachry/Parsons will be the joint venture design and construction team, while the firms of PGH Wong Engineering and Harris and Associates will handle management. Morales said the California High-Speed Rail Authority formed the construction and design companies, which are world renowned in handling transportation endeavors. Morales also mentioned that this is not just a typical transportation project, and some of the up to 250 transplanted employees are already spending money at local restaurants and hotspots.
“This office opening is a down payment on the economic development that can happen to the city, for the region, for the state,” Morales said.
Kate Borders, president and CEO of the Downtown Fresno Partnership, said she expects the new influx of people, particularly in the downtown area, will dine and shop at downtown establishments throughout the day and into the evening.
“That’s 250 people that carry with them the most important revitalization tool,” Borders said. “You know what that is? Your wallet.”
The presence of the new teams will also ring up new business for many entities that are already here.
“They also plan do as much business with local vendors and subcontractors as possible,” Eager said. “The fact that they chose to locate their offices in downtown Fresno shows tremendous support for the city.”