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AROUND TOWN: New south retail planned

Crary Development is planning another commercial space near the Choice Health and Fitness on the city’s growing south end.

The building will be located just east of the Wild Hog Smokehouse Bar and Grill and will be identical to the building just to the south that houses Dunn Brothers Coffee and Snap Fitness, said Prudential Crary real estate agent Steve Adams.

While specific tenants haven’t signed on yet, Adams said he expects similar businesses occupy the twin buildings. He said they hope to have it ready by next spring.

The new building is listed as being 47,405 square feet on planning documents.

The commercial space is another sign of south Grand Forks’ growth. As crews continue to work on a future youth ice arena nearby, Hugo’s is planning for a new grocery store and commercial development to sprout up on the south side of 47th Avenue.

Panda Buffet getting bigger

An owner of the Panda Buffet restaurant is looking to add room for more seating this fall.

The restaurant, located at 2451 S. Columbia Road, submitted plans to the Grand Forks Planning and Zoning Department to add a 1,178-square-foot addition to the south side of the building.

Xing Lin, the restaurant’s owner, said it will allow them to add roughly 100 more seats.

“Sometimes we don’t have enough seating,” Lin said. He said the expansion could also allow for a party room separate from the general seating.

He said they hope to start work in September, which is usually a slower time for business. The expansion will require them to close for about a month, Lin said.

The expansion comes as two other Asian restaurants plan to move in nearby. Owners of Sakura Steak House and Sushi Bar have announced plans to open in the former Space Aliens building on 32nd Avenue South, and a HuHot Mongolian Grill is slated to open near the Columbia Mall potentially later this year.

Web biz downtown

One of Grand Forks’ oldest buildings has a new tenant.

Also Creative Inc. is a local developer of websites and mobile phone apps for diverse companies including cleaning services, convenience stores and precision agriculture.

“We’re gearing toward getting into more mobile work,” said Justin Auch, the company’s president. “We’re trying to throw our hat into that ring.”

They recently set up offices in the Boomtown Building at 216 S. Third St. in downtown Grand Forks. Dating to around 1884, it is one of the last wooden buildings from the first decades of the city’s existence.

Auch has been remodeling it for about a year, adding reclaimed wooden beams and other rustic features alongside big-screen computer monitors. The company just hung out its sign this month, prompting curious passersby to check out the old building’s new occupant.

Send business tips to Bjorke at and (701) 780-1117 or to Hageman at or (701) 780-1244.