(Photos by Christopher Boffoli)
One week ago, we shared Larry Nitkey‘s photo of the 86-year-old house at 4516 42nd SW (map), one of four eventually slated to make way for a mixed-use development at 42nd/Oregon, and his report it would be moved. For WSB, Christopher Boffoli subsequently went to the site to get a closer look and speak with the contractors, who had told us by phone that we were welcome to come find out more, and take more photos.
Alex Schenkar of Schenkar Construction says this type of project is his firm’s specialty – they also emphasize sustainability and, when feasible, preserving well-built old houses, rather than tearing them down for brand-new ones. But some dismantling work is happening here; to move this house to its new location at 2758 46th SW (here’s a map; here’s a flyer received along part of the route), they had to cut it down to its first floor – so it can get under power lines, Schenkar said. (You can see an undated “before” photo on the county website.)
Now for a peek inside:
Workers even have taken a look inside the walls – Schenkar said they hadn’t found any treasures, but they did find Depression-era “newspapers talking about FDR.”
Christopher also reports, “All of the old framing lumber was really remarkable. Beautiful old full-dimension lumber with tight, straight grain. You’d never see that kind of stuff inside walls in new construction these days. Alex said that’s just the kind of common lumber they had available in the 20’s and 30’s. It was really nothing special. ‘Houses like this were built by loggers and fishermen’.”
A new second story is planned for the house when the move is complete. Meantime, work will continue until the move happens early Sunday, July 18th – an operation that will take several hours. If you are interested in more of this house’s backstory, our partners at the Seattle Times just published an article about it tonight, including an interview with the new owners – you can read it here.