First Mural & Link; next for Harbor Properties in West Seattle, Nova

(Photo by Christopher Boffoli)
One week from tonight, the Southwest Design Review Board convenes for the first time in many months, to offer “early design guidance” on a new West Seattle project. As reported here previously, that project is by Harbor Properties, which is about to open Link in The Triangle, a followup to its mixed-use sibling in The Junction, Mural. (Both are WSB sponsors.)

The new project is in The Triangle, two blocks east of Link, on a relatively small parcel (4600 36th SW) that Harbor bought while also at one time holding an option on the adjacent motel, an option it didn’t convert (as reported here last year, the motel has new owners and a new plan). We just spoke with Emi McKittrick and Denny Onslow of Harbor, who say the new project has a name: Nova. They’re looking at around 60 apartments, mostly one- and two-bedroom, and no retail – “because of where it’s located on 36th, we don’t think retail can thrive there; the site is kind of ‘tucked in’,” McKittrick explained. They’re aiming for six stories, and an as-yet-undetermined amount of parking – most likely similar to Link, with about two-thirds as many spaces as units.

With Link already having secured tenants for more than a quarter of its 195 units, before the first move-in (which is about a week away), Harbor is still banking on strong apartment demand in West Seattle: “It went undiscovered for so long as a delightful place to be,” Onslow observed. They don’t have sketches for Nova just yet, but we’ll see them in pre-meeting material sometime before next week’s Design Review Board meeting, 6:30 pm Thursday 3/24 at the Senior Center of West Seattle (SE corner of California/Oregon).

19 Replies to "First Mural & Link; next for Harbor Properties in West Seattle, Nova"

  • Diane March 17, 2011 (5:31 pm)

    why does the dpd status say “proposing 5-story” and “Parking for 5 vehicles to be provided below grade”
    5 vehicles?

    • WSB March 17, 2011 (8:24 pm)

      The DPD pages are not always accurate, as we have learned time and time again in researching stories. So, whenever possible, we talk to the people involved. – TR

  • Rview March 17, 2011 (9:19 pm)

    Wow, more apartments in an industrial limited parking area. Likely that Alki Lumber will get forced out.

  • Diane March 17, 2011 (10:17 pm)

    this is an excellent location, with Y across the street, great bus access & Rapid Ride within a block or so; if it were already built, I’d be looking for a 1 bedroom there

  • hatcher March 18, 2011 (6:10 am)

    Too many Apartments? I am concerned that my quaint little West seattle is growing too fast. What is WSB’s take on this?

    • WSB March 18, 2011 (6:48 am)

      Good morning. To paraphrase another organization’s slogan (is it still their slogan? haven’t watched them in a long time) – “We report, you opine.” Our job is to bring you the facts of what’s happening, what’s proposed, what’s going to happen, what’s been happening. There is one thing we *do* advocate – participating in the official public process, as well as voicing opinions here, in the coffee shop, with your friends and colleagues and family … For starters, as noted above, there is a Design Review meeting for this project next week. There is always a time for public comment. Many a project has changed/evolved because of what was said, by both the public and the board members (who are all volunteers), at meetings like that one. So we do hope everyone interested will be there. If you’re not able to, we’ll have information on how to comment via e-mail/postal mail … TR

  • CandrewB March 18, 2011 (6:18 am)

    “Standing room only” on the 54X.

  • homesweethome March 18, 2011 (6:41 am)

    Seattle is a city. Cities are supposed to be crowded. Towns and suburbs on the other hand, more space. West Seattle has always seemed suburban to me – glad to see it is finally joining the city. Maybe we can also drop the “west” while we’re at it.

  • miws March 18, 2011 (8:07 am)

    homesweethome, so Ballard, Fremont, Queen Anne, Montlake, Mt. Baker, Wedgwood, and all other Seattle neighborhoods should drop their names as well?



  • Nulu March 18, 2011 (8:53 am)

    “The DPD pages are not always accurate, as we have learned time and time again in researching stories. So, whenever possible, we talk to the people involved.” – TR WSB

    Tracy is right-on with this one, although inaccurate DPD pages are the tip of the tip of the tip of the DPD iceberg. Fortunately, incorrect info from DPD to WSB does not cost people tens of thousands of dollars and their livelihood.

    When I first got involved with DPD to develop award-winning modern infill homes in West Seattle, I assumed that there was a reasonable system of rules and regulations that were possible to follow. I was wrong.

    As one DPD official said, “Getting involved in DPD’s Critical Areas Code is like jumping into a blender.”

    Myself, my plans and my money have been pureed.

  • Diane March 18, 2011 (12:17 pm)

    nulu, what is your company name? would love to check out your homes; perhaps meet for coffee to get your insights on working with dpd; I’ve attended nearly all the WS design reviews and many dpd meetings in past few years; just observing and participating in those has been huge learning curve; you can reach me at

  • george March 18, 2011 (1:59 pm)

    More parking headaches for the Y. Yeah, we need more apartments and condo’s here.

  • DP March 18, 2011 (7:28 pm)

    “Cities are supposed to be crowded.”

    I thought cities were supposed to be liveable.
    Any urban planner worth her salt knows that you don’t throw up more housing than the infrastructure can handle, but that seems to be what’s happening here. Yes, buses and streets are getting too crowded. Yes, neigborhoods are becoming sterile and ugly, as we tear down single-family homes and erect cramped and garish high-rise apartment blocks in their place.
    “Homesweethome” (oh the irony!), were you a termite in a past life or something?
    Hey! Watchit, will ya buster? You’re standing on my foot!

  • Nulu March 19, 2011 (10:37 pm)

    Hey DP, cities need density to be livable.
    Where were you twenty years ago during all the planning for “urban village” designations?

    “Yes, neigborhoods are becoming sterile and ugly, as we tear down single-family homes and erect cramped and garish high-rise apartment blocks in their place.” – DP

    Apparently DP is not familiar with the triangle area as it has not been a neighborhood of single family homes for close to a century.
    In fact I know of no area in West Seattle, with exception of Alki’s Gold Coast that has had single family homes replaced by high-rise apartment blocks, much less cramped and garish ones. Please fill us in?

    Here in West Seattle, we are experiencing a boom in products and services that only increased density and crowds provides.

  • DF March 20, 2011 (4:04 pm)

    NULU GET A CLUE! My hometown has become with this increased density a trashfest. I am grateful to live here and do my part to help keep it clean. Go to capitol hill walk around there and see the endless streams of garbage up there from increased density. Renters. Those same renters here there worst example of proper recycling go around back of almost any increased density complex and see for yourself or you reading this post right now go check it out. The triangle is west seattle industry based area.

  • Nulu March 21, 2011 (11:36 am)

    Hey DF, I’m happy to get a clue from you.
    And, I agree to some degree, with commerce comes trash.

    But those new Westside residents that you demonize as “renters” boost our economy, allow local businesses to start or grow, and help you by propping up your property values if you are a homeowner.

    The argument can be made that renters do not have as much a stake in the community and are more casual with trash and recycling, but much can be mitigated through education…and the example of those already here.

    “The triangle is west seattle industry based area.” -DF

    I believe this is a commercial based area and has been for a long time. From the old days, I remember the former location of the YMCA, offices for doctors and dentists, car repair, auto body, retail, supermarkets, various small businesses (anybody recall Chuck Ellis’ Guitar Studio?), VFW Hall, lumber yard and car dealerships.
    Minus the car dealers, (no big loss to me), it’s pretty much the same now, but a new vibrancy is here with restaurants & services and people residing above them.

    I welcome all of the new residents and wish them luck and fortitude as they interact with the minority who share DF’s beliefs.

  • DF March 21, 2011 (5:17 pm)

    I guess I just want West Seattle to be back like it was then Lulu an undiscovered hidden Gem. Still is a Gem : ) .

  • Rebecca March 22, 2011 (10:19 am)

    I’m a renter, and I have to say that I’ve probably lived in West Seattle longer than most home owners (or most of you). Just because I can’t afford a half a million for a house doesn’t mean I’m not a good neighbor or that I don’t value my neighborhood. For the record, I grew up in this neighborhood. I’m sick of the density adding too, and frankly sick of the mass migration to Seattle in general.

    If any of you transplants want to whine about renters, we can have some coffee and chat.

  • DF March 22, 2011 (8:38 pm)

    Name a time and place I’ll buy

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