WEST SEATTLE DEVELOPMENT: 7 Morgan Junction parcels listed together for $5.6 million, banking on HALA upzoning

Our daily check of commercial-real-estate listings just turned up a new listing that’s the first one we’ve seen explicitly referring to the potential Housing Affordability and Livability Agenda (HALA) Mandatory Housing Affordability (MHA) upzoning: 7 Morgan Junction parcels listed together for $5.6 million, with the online listing and flyer noting:

It is located within the Morgan Junction Urban Village, where zoning is proposed to increase from Single Family to Lowrise 3 as part of the City of Seattle’s Mandatory Housing Affordability (MHA) proposal.

And, getting more specific, here’s what the listing says that could enable:

According to a preliminary feasibility study completed by NK Architects, an apartment site plan shows a 5-story apartment building with 148 apartment units, while a townhome scheme provides for 30 townhomes.

The 7-parcel site [map] is described as 37,000+ square feet, just east of the Morgan Junction business district – bordered by Fauntleroy Way SW to the south, 41st SW to the west, SW Graham to the north, an alley to the east. The upzoning that would turn this single-family-zoned area into a multi-family-zoned area is not expected to go to the City Council before next year; the HALA MHA Draft Environmental Impact Statement is still in comment phase until August 7th.

41 Replies to "WEST SEATTLE DEVELOPMENT: 7 Morgan Junction parcels listed together for $5.6 million, banking on HALA upzoning"

  • Jeannie July 26, 2017 (5:05 pm)

     I think the city has HALAtosis. I’m all for “affordable” housing – we sure need it – but, once again, the “livability” part of HALA rears its head. Sorry it’s the same old argument, but adding thousands of people to our peninsula will make traffic on the West Seattle Bridge go from “awful” to “sheer hell.” Don’t the planners take this into consideration? As so many of us have already noted, not everyone can ride a bike or take a bus to work.

    • JRR July 26, 2017 (5:28 pm)

      100,000 people have moved here since 2009. We have to put us all somewhere. Better transit that actually goes where people go follows density. 

      • Meyer July 26, 2017 (7:08 pm)

        I agree with JRR. More and more people are moving here and we can’t stop it so we better get ahead of the curve with public transit. It is our only chance and keep the same quality of life we have now while also welcoming newcomers (which we all were at one point, or our parents).

        • Swede. July 27, 2017 (12:45 pm)

          Sorry but there won’t be any ‘getting a head of the curve’. Metro bases are already over full so we can’t get more busses, no new base is in the works and will take years to build when/if one will come and same with sound transits trains, many years out. The latter have however already lately affected traffic by taking the carpool bridge out of usage on I-90, so now there is four less lanes to drive… Also the funding isn’t comming in with the population growth since we don’t have any income tax. 

      • Canton July 26, 2017 (10:03 pm)

        Ok, JRR. Need some transit help. Wake up at 5 am, daycare opens a 7. Gotta be at work at 8:30. Get off work at 5 pm, have to be at daycare by 6 pm. What transit options do I have besides my car?

        • Canton July 26, 2017 (10:12 pm)

          West seattle to Ballard and back.

          • Matt July 27, 2017 (4:00 am)

            You could do daycare by job and take the bus.  Lots of people do that.  

          • sam-c July 27, 2017 (8:48 am)

            Surely if all the childcare options in West Seattle have long wait lists, no doubt the ones in Ballard do too.  It’s hard to find options unless you go the in-home day care or nanny/ nanny-share route.  A kid will be in kindergarten by the time you make it off the wait list if you try to switch to new childcare in a different part of town.    

            But don’t worry, once HALA converts so many SF houses to multi-family bldgs with 1 bedroom or studio apartments, maybe the childcare wait lists will open up !  :)

          • For Livability July 27, 2017 (12:32 pm)

            Spot on – people have different needs, but HALA pushers expect us to all conform to their alternate reality. They don’t know what they’re talking about re: childcare and needing a car, nor do they care. Rob Johnsons staff told us as much during their community outreach meetings. These HALA pushers generally hate families with children occupying single family homes… until they become one.

          • Captin July 27, 2017 (9:56 pm)

            Wow. Hate? Thats a pretty strong generalization. Maybe strongly disagree about certain parts of HALA. I generally support it but totally dislike the parking crap. People will get cars when they have kids and scheduling child care with work and everything else is insane. Been there, done that.

            If we had effective mass transit my opinion would be different as far as that goes. Also, remember that only 6% of the entire city is being proposed for upzoning. That leaves 94% of the city untouched. That doesn’t sound to me like an attack on single family zoning and an evil attempt to destroy our city. It sounds like urban planning. Again, not perfect but are we really going to get 700,000 to agree on what to do?

        • NH July 28, 2017 (5:22 pm)

          I take the bus, but I get it. Wednesday it was 22 minutes late in the afternoon. So far today we’re at 9 minutes late and It’s nowhere in sight. I need to get home, grab my car, pick up my son by 6 and it’s 5:21. I’m stressing right now…   

          • Pixie B August 6, 2017 (3:33 pm)

            Many people  do not realize that parents can be charged a fee for every minute they are late picking up their child.  I sit for my grandchildren.  They arrive at 5:30 and sometimes don’t get picked up until 6p.m., because of the parent’s job requirements. Imagine how much the already expensive childcare for 2 – a 1 year old and a 3 year old – would cost then.  It is bad enough that most have one parent  working just  to pay for that childcare. There is no win/win when childcare is involved unless your workplace has a childcare center as part of it’s perks.  

    • JeffK July 27, 2017 (5:47 am)

      West Seattle needs more commercial buildings and businesses so people can work where they live.  Most are in the paradigm of having to go across the bridge to work.

      • Heather July 27, 2017 (4:51 pm)


      • Meyer July 27, 2017 (6:42 pm)

        I agree with you as well JeffK. If I didn’t have to commute downtown I be given 40+ minutes of my day back each day and would be one less person on the bus. As for the person above who has daycare in Ballard, there are plenty of daycare centers here in West Seattle, it seems odd to drive so far for a day care. Also, even if you do need to drive, more transit options will sway other drivers (who don’t have daycare needs) to take transit which means less cars on the road for those who do need to drive. It’s a win-win.

        • Canton July 27, 2017 (8:10 pm)

          For clarity, live in WS, work in ballard. Mom lives a bit south, so Ballard not an option for daycare. Besides, I would rather slog through traffic than separate my kid from 3 years at a great daycare and longtime friends. Tried the bus for 2 years (before child), 3-4 hours a day commute not worth time away from my kid.

        • sam-c July 28, 2017 (12:08 pm)

          @ Meyer: my comment about Ballard daycare was a response to Matt, who basically said “just switch to day care near your job” (Canton’s job is in Ballard as (he or she) mentioned a couple times)

  • Swede. July 26, 2017 (5:29 pm)

    It will suck being a neighbor to that. Construction for a year or two and then 200 people looking into your yard. 

    The ‘affordable’ part is just a word, they will be expensive. Current rate in WS is about $1900/month for about 600sqft… 

    • WSB July 26, 2017 (5:56 pm)

      If these parcels are upzoned, the ones across 41st to the west will be too – they’re part of the “single-family zoning in urban villages is all up for upzoning” component of HALA MHA. That block, in turn, backs up against a multi-family-zoned block on 42nd. But … the 30-townhome concept might be worth more to somebody. I just looked at some of the prices for which the 30-townhouse complex Rally (old Charlestown Café site at California/Charlestown) went for (website says they’re sold out) … $650K to $800K. – TR

  • TJ July 26, 2017 (6:07 pm)

    I know many people on both sides of the political spectrum, mostly liberal and some even the dreaded “progressive”, and this is the one issue that I literally don’t know anyone who agrees with this whole HALA nightmare. NOBODY. Who exactly was the city council and HALA listening to when they dreamed up this disaster? Remember, the HALA commission originally comically stated that Seattle’s single family neighborhoods have roots in racism and in and of themselves are bad. They actually would like to get rid of single family neighborhoods altogether. Be careful people, HALA really is looking like a offshoot from the ridiculous UN Agenda 21. All this building, and ZERO added infrastructure to move people?  Most of these new people will have cars, but the city is doing nothing to add car capacity (barely can fill potholes), and in fact reducing it with bus and car lanes. All while not making developers pay for the desperately needed infrastructure. Sprawl is what has made America. We have lots of room to spread out here, so enough of the can of sardines feel the city is pushing

    • KM July 26, 2017 (6:59 pm)

      Reverse for me. Like you, I know many on either side of the spectrum, and I only know a few who don’t want it, and only one of them lives in the city (the rest in the suburbs–not sure why they even care?) I think there are many who don’t agree with it 100%, but just like candidates and many initiatives/referendums/laws, total agreement is rare. There are definitely things I would change about it.

    • Captin July 27, 2017 (9:25 am)

      Too bad we can’t have an effective poll from 2035 now. I’m pretty sure everyone right now wishes the people of he past would have voted for light rail decades ago, but they didn’t, twice. I would guess people ideologically opposed would agree on that one. That’s a big reason why transit is behind growth but there is no stopping the growth. It’s not greedy developers getting handouts from the city: it’s economics. Money, jobs, supply and demand.

    • For Livability July 27, 2017 (12:36 pm)

      TJ – they listened to the Urbanists (aka architects and developers)/Rob Johnson crowd, and cronys, who stand to gain significantly from the work upzoned neighborhoods, property conversions, and reconstruction will bring. There are 5 land parcels along 35th between Alaska and Edmunds that are now owned by the same developer, who is anticipating the upzone and going around trying to buy up properties on 36th so he can remove the older houses and replace them with properties as big as he can lobby to achieve. His plans will destroy a nice single family neighborhood between 36th and 38th ave.

  • Deb July 26, 2017 (6:15 pm)

    The Rally project went through design review. 

  • TJ July 26, 2017 (6:20 pm)

    Meant to say bus and bike lanes, not “bus and car”

  • CeeBee July 26, 2017 (6:44 pm)

    What’s going to be really interesting is the final version of the maps.  I know that this area was suggested over and over again in the workshops and at outreach, that LR3 was too high and not appropriate transitioning from the proposed NC3-40 to the west and LR1 to the south and east sides.  How is the broker so sure LR3 will be the final zoning proposed?  I thought we were still “in process”.  

    Oh, right, silly me.


  • Cindy Lou Who July 26, 2017 (7:03 pm)

    How does the purchase of these properties work?  Is it an offer you can’t refuse?  What if the homeowner mid-block doesn’t want to sell? I live nearby and am concerned my long time residence is doomed.  Thanks in advance for further info.

  • Morgan July 26, 2017 (7:29 pm)

    Well…it’s too bad we can’t have development wratchet up the speed to delivery of light rail. 

    Jobs to building permit ratio says we are not keeping up in construction of housing.Seattle businesses are just too good at job creation for some folks taste I suppose.

    There’s more to livability than transport. Preservation of views, access to air and greenery…planners should find ways to push for better design that delivers on some of these things as they balance with more density. I’ve heard nary a word on stepbacks on multi stories, though…and the townhomes could use a little variety.

    Can we supply more housing without slaughtering our gold egg laying goose, a mixed use walkable  eighborhood in easy reach of shore and mountain views?

  • Jim July 26, 2017 (8:45 pm)

    Why is City staff out encouraging the private residents to sell so they can have this big block to offer to developers?  I am aware that this has happened.  Does this come from HALA or from Economic Development staff?  Is this a proper role for City staff?  HALA is a pit.Jim

    • WSB July 26, 2017 (8:48 pm)

      Where did you hear or see city staff encouraging residents to sell somewhere?

  • Linda July 26, 2017 (9:10 pm)

    As I sit here enjoying my view of the Olympics at sunset across this parcel, I have to wonder if my landlords will reduce my rent when my view is gone. And then I remember all the property taxes voters in this city have approved along with the new property taxes from the state and I realize the answer is no.  My landlords can’t afford to reduce my rent and still pay all of those taxes. So all I can do is let them know and hope, as property owners, their voice will carry more weight on this issue than my lowly renter voice.

    • Captin July 27, 2017 (9:29 am)

      Sorry you have to worry about that Linda. Being a renter in Seattle right now is tough.

  • TJ July 26, 2017 (10:07 pm)

    Sory to rain on the public transit parade, but most new people are going to drive. Period. Maybe a higher percentage will take public transit than current residents, but we are talking about the majority driving. As much as some people think we need to model ourselves after some European cities, America thank goodness is not Europe. And regionally, while we passed ST3, public morale for public transit is low now. A $50 billion price tag on a 30 year project in some phases now has sucked the well dry. Only so much money they can come after. A good friend works for Metro Transit, and he said that they unbelievably have plans to ask for a large tax increase coming up to expand bus service, but now are evaluating how to proceed because of the $50 billion ST3 price tag & public backlash over the car tab tax scheme, thinking there is no way King County will support any new transit tax of any kind

    • WSB July 26, 2017 (10:31 pm)

      We are certainly in a transitional time but – do you have any 20somethings in your family? Many don’t own cars. Cars cost too much, both to buy and to operate (and to park, etc.). Ridesharing (Uber etc.) and carsharing (for those with licenses – Car2Go, ReachNow, etc.) have provided a means of transportation that didn’t previously exist, when transit isn’t convenient. It’s tougher to be a non-car-owner here than in cities that have long-established mass-transit systems (our kid lives in one such city back east, in an apartment that did not come with parking, which he doesn’t need anyway), but you have to see the new transportation lifestyle in action to truly understand it – Tracy

    • Meyer July 27, 2017 (6:47 pm)

      @TJ – less and less millennials are opting for owning a car. That number will only grow as our transit system gets better. People won’t ditch their car until good transit (e.g. rail) is here in West Seattle. Until then, yes, most of the new people moving here will likely drive cars. This should just motivate us more to do anything we can to make ST3 and other transit projects move faster.

  • Gene July 27, 2017 (9:18 am)

    I get that we are transitioning to a new transportation lifestyle- also have lived in & have relatives in cities on the east coast & yes-walking-  taxis, subways, commuter trains – that’s the norm- especially for city dwellers & those that commute from the suburbs to the city. Seattle is embracing that- more folks living in the city- using Uber, Lyft, taxis- bikes or just playing walking- using light rail- buses to & from work . It’s a work in progress here-  I’m in my 60’s & have friends that have embraced Uber as a way to get to Mariners games from WS- ; plan on that myself)& we have talked about the convenience of doing that to get to other downtown venues.  That’s all good, & while I can see that younger folks might put off owning a car for awhile- when they have a family – that could change. All the new builds with few to none parking spots-if you think many of those folks really don’t have cars- just check out the side streets- in & around the heart of WS.  A topic for another day- a parking garage – close to the junction!

  • Seattlite July 27, 2017 (3:39 pm)

    I really hate the term “urban village.”  The urban village concept has wreaked havoc on what use to be very livable urban neighborhoods in greater Seattle. Overdevelopment, overcrowding without proper infrastructure (roadways) predicts a dismal future for WS and other urban neighborhoods.  I don’t see an end to the egregious destruction of a once wonderful family-oriented neighborhood/community such as WS. 


  • pjmanley July 27, 2017 (5:43 pm)

    Yogi Berra once said “Don’t follow the crowd.  When you do, there’s too many people when you get there.”  Pretty much sums up my feelings on the matter.  I’ve enjoyed my 30 years in the City, but it’s changing too much, too fast, and not, overall, in a good way.  We used to be an overlooked outpost full of unique local characters that made us a gem.  Now?  We’re headed the way of Chicago.  And Chicago’s population, despite urbanization and gentrification, is actually shrinking.  We’ve got a way to go yet, but the die may be cast.   

  • WS since '66 July 28, 2017 (7:13 am)

    Seattlite. To the
    contrary Urban Villages have been well received. People like to be able to walk
    to a coffee shop, restaurant, local watering hole, stores, etc. It is a proven
    fact (check it out on Zillow) that homes close to an UV are more desirable than
    those where you must get in a car to go anywhere. The same would be said about
    the monorail stops if it would have been built. You know, the monorail, the one which
    had 4 “yes” votes then the sole “no” vote killed it. Imagine if it were
    completed and even with a 2 year overrun we would have been enjoying it and taking
    cars off of the WS Bridge for the last 5-6 years.

    • Captin July 28, 2017 (7:16 pm)

      Ditto. Isn’t that the whole point?’

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