What goes up …

Two tales today of things going up:

-The Admiral Way Viewpoint’s new pole will be celebrated this afternoon. The P-I’s version of the story today is fairly vanilla; the WS Herald’s version (with photo) is spiced with the backstory of how the log used for the pole was “poached.”

-Taller and wider than perhaps a thousand poles, yet another “mixed-use” project in the Junction (this is the one on ex-monorail land across from Jefferson Square) is advancing through the city pipeline. The latest Land Use Info Bulletin (a must-subscribe if you are interested in early word on what might be going up, and coming down, near you) announces an “early design review guidance” meeting in two weeks. Now the big question — in the two months since this P-I article spotlighted the dilemma to be posed by the loss of that parking lot, is there any progress toward a solution? (as was semi-promised in the following section of that article) The concerns are significant; I wound up parking in that lot last Sunday while trying to get to the Farmers’ Market, since everything on the west side of California (and beyond) was taken (except the “pay spaces,” which I suppose we’ll now see more of), and no, the bus wasn’t a good solution — the Sunday schedules are horrible. Anyway, here’s what was in that May P-I article. Love to hear what’s transpired regarding staying “in touch with the community”:

The company that catalyzed high-rise downtown living with Harbor Steps apartments has shifted its sights to close-in neighborhoods, snapping up a parking lot in the heart of West Seattle’s Alaska Junction.

It fits Harbor Properties’ criteria perfectly: good public transportation, a walkable business district and a neighborhood “with a soul,” said chief development officer Denny Onslow.

Though specifics for the roughly 100-unit development the company plans to build there are up on the air, it’s clear the building will supplant the parking lot behind Petco, which will be forced to move once those 40 spaces are gone, store officials say.

It’s also functioned as a free community lot where anyone dropping in for dance lessons, beers or kids’ art classes could usually poach a spot.

“In my opinion it’s going to be devastating to lose that as parking,” said Michael Hoffman, owner of Liberty Bell Printing. “We were trying to get it back for our merchants association … but there was no way we could compete.”

Harbor Properties, which bid $4.5 million, has already begun talking to the community and is well aware of the parking concerns, said development director Steve Orser.

The company is willing to work on those, he said. Junction businesses, though, should also benefit from an influx of new residents looking to walk to restaurants, shopping or yoga classes.

“Sometimes our parking is lower than what you might expect because we offer alternative transportation and we encourage that as part of our sustainable and green development,” he said. “But we’re going to do our best to be in touch with the community and see if there aren’t solutions.”

1 Reply to "What goes up ..."

  • kent and Caanan August 11, 2006 (9:51 pm)

    Petco would be forced to move? That is the best part of the article! Thanks for a great blog…

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