DEVELOPMENT: Change in plan for 9201 Delridge Way SW

(WSB photo, January 2018)

ORIGINAL REPORT, SATURDAY NIGHT: Back in February, the Southwest Design Review Board gave its final OK to the plan for a 4-story storage facility to replace the auto-shop business at 9201 Delridge Way SW. But new documents in the city filing system suggest that plan’s been scrapped and a new one is in the works: A 5-story, 56-unit mixed-use building. The new early-stage site plan (PDF) shows that 51 units would be apartment, 5 would be ground-floor live-works, and that there will be offstreet parking spaces for 8 cars and 59 bicycles. The building would also have retail space with an entry from Delridge; its main residential entrance would be off SW Barton. So why the change? A docket notation regarding the withdrawal of permit requests for the storage project says, “New zoning does not allow what was proposed for this permit application.” This site, like several others we’ve reported on lately, was upzoned by HALA Mandatory Housing Affordability and is now zoned NC3-55.

ADDED MONDAY AFTERNOON: Department of Construction and Inspections spokesperson Bryan Stevens says the aforementioned docket notation is accurate: “Zoning changed from a Commercial 1 zone with a 40′ height limit to a Neighborhood Commercial 3 zone with a 55′ height limit. The new zoning placed a 25,000 sq. ft. limit on mini-storage uses. The previous proposal included 34,000 sq. ft. of mini-storage. A revision to the design would have been required to limit the size of this type of business, while the added height provided with MHA may have also played a role in reconsidering the project.”

31 Replies to "DEVELOPMENT: Change in plan for 9201 Delridge Way SW"

  • mem October 12, 2019 (10:46 pm)

    Thank god!!! A storage facility added NOTHING  to the city-designated urban village for this section of SW Delridge Way. However, I am concerned that 51 units have only 8 parking spaces. Really?? How do 8 parking spaces and  59 bike spaces help neighboring properties absorb the potential vehicles for the 51+ occupants in this building? 

    • AMD October 13, 2019 (6:50 am)

      Transit at this location is AMAZING!  It’s within a few blocks of buses to downtown (including the future RapidRide H line), Westwood, the Junction, South Seattle College, the Admiral District, the Airport, the hospitals on First Hill, Bellevue, Burien, Southcenter Mall, South Park, Georgetown, Morgan Junction, Renton, and I’m sure I’m missing a few.  It is WELL-connected transit-wise and I’m sure there are plenty of car-free households who would be ecstatic to live in this building.  Maybe people with cars should take a pass on this one rather than increasing the cost for those who need the location for its transit access.  Totally agree about the storage facility, though.  Glad it’s going to be housing with retail.

    • Tyler Sullivan October 13, 2019 (8:38 am)

      Stop driving, ride a bike

      • Wsea October 13, 2019 (3:26 pm)

        I ride a bike daily to work but still need a car for outings and kid events. I’ve only met one car free household and she debates getting a car often and she has no kids.  A lack of at least one space per unit is crazy and just adds to parking issues in surrounding neighborhoods.  If anything the car free unit can rent out their space to add to the cash they save from not owning a car. 

      • Andros October 14, 2019 (10:11 am)

        Please stop beating this drum.  Some people can not ride bikes… and this is not a bike friendly city as we would like to believe.  Even experts from Europe have proven this.  Locally, I’ve tried… and it’s a deathwish to try to commute into downtown from West Seattle.   Cities in the Netherlands are different.  The majority of the bike lanes in Amsterdam are segregated from the street by thick white lines and red painting or even by bollards and curbs. Parking garages specifically for bikes stand next to train stations to allow commuters to continue their commute on bike in the city.  And they have all flat terrain, which makes it easier to get around.  Seattle doesn’t have that going for it.  And only 2.5 percent of the commuters in this city bike, though we have spent millions of dollars to improve the biking system.  I think that’s still good…but trust me, not everyone can just hop on a bike in this town.  Light rail and improved buses are always the better way.

    • Craig October 13, 2019 (8:52 am)

      I agree- seems like there should either be less units or more parking.    I would think if the mixed use portion is to be successful that there should be a reasonable amount of parking for residents plus some for patrons.     Marginal deal for the existing businesses as well.

  • Nick October 13, 2019 (3:03 am)

    50+ unit building with less than 10 parking spaces. Nice.

  • Concerned Citizen October 13, 2019 (6:25 am)

    Not the only one concerned about parking… Between STS and Blue Stone apartment parking and driving around that area is a nightmare!

  • JRR October 13, 2019 (8:05 am)

    Oh this is so much better than a storage facility. Welcome, new neighbors.

  • chemist October 13, 2019 (10:12 am)

    Interesting notation “New zoning does not allow what was proposed for this permit application” because I thought that, for years, projects were allowed to develop with dual proposals, for the zoning that existed when applied as well as what was planned under MHA rezone, with the submitter being able to use either that applied when the project vested.  Unless something passed that retroactively removed self-storage from permits, it sounds like maybe they just want to update to the new zoning.     Something in the layout sketch also seems off, since it has 9 parking stalls drawn and no bike room indicated (59 bikes need to be on a ground floor/accessible without stairs).

    • WSB October 13, 2019 (10:51 am)

      I have been covering West Seattle development for 12+ years and have NEVER seen a “dual proposal” project. They have been subject to the rules at the time they entered the system. I am going to ask SDCI about this assertion tomorrow because it also seems as if that should cut the other way – if you entered the system and spent all that $ and time on design, Design Review, etc., why would the previously permitted use suddenly be ruled out? – TR

      • Diane October 13, 2019 (1:49 pm)

        amazing huh? has this ever happened before? I can’t recall any project that went all the way through to approval, then started over with entirely new design

      • chemist October 13, 2019 (6:13 pm)

        I look forward to what you find about being prohibited from using the zoning that applied earlier.  There have been some other projects that re-entered to be upgraded to new zoning in the UDistrict although that was a much larger change.  I do recall the Aurora-Licton Springs Urban Village recently changing to restrict self-storage facilities but that was not a city-wide thing.

        Zoning for the site has gone from NC3-65 (a mixed-use zone with a 65-foot height limit) to SM-U 75-240 (a mixed-use zone with a flexible 75- to 240-foot height limit). In other words, zoning on the site could allow for a tower rising more than 20 stories.

        • WSB October 14, 2019 (4:44 pm)

          Interestingly, SDCI says this is basically true. Adding their response above.

          • chemist October 14, 2019 (6:21 pm)

            I can’t quite tell from that response if it hadn’t reached a status of vested under the prior or if there were further revisions desired that ruled out using a prior vested permit.  Thank you for contacting the folks at SDCI though.  I poked around the records for 3029353 and I see the permit application has records going back to late 2017, was marked submitted and passed zoning screening in April, and then was marked Corrections Required on August before being withdrawn last week.  Maybe the key thing is the final submitted 4/21 date and the city’s HALA/MHA website saying “The new zoning took effect on April 19, 2019″

  • Kb October 13, 2019 (10:48 am)

    There is quite plentiful parking on the streets around this area. Which is a shame. All street parking should be turned into rapid transit lanes. In any case, this is such a huge win for the White Center and Westwood areas!  Hopefully we can have a bunch of youngsters (many of which don’t even want cars anymore) living here and engaging in the hood. Awesome!  

    • m October 13, 2019 (5:57 pm)

      KB – I live in the neighborhood. There is not “quite plentiful” parking on the streets around the property. I wasn’t excited about the planned storage unit for that space and am overall happier about a development that includes housing and retail space. However, the size of this coupled with so few parking spaces is going to be a nightmare. 

  • KM October 13, 2019 (11:06 am)

    New zoning blocking storage facilities? More please!

  • WTF October 13, 2019 (11:09 am)

    Yeah. Another apartment building. 😤Light the sparklers and dance in the street. 

    • DB Coop October 13, 2019 (1:31 pm)

      Agreed! Yet another apartment building with inadequate parking within 2 blocks of my house. Thanks HALA! 

      • Alex October 13, 2019 (5:18 pm)

        Even if the developers designed this building with one offstreet parking spot per unit, the City Council enacted new rules recently requiring the landlord to price the parking spot independent of the dwelling unit.   The renter then can choose whether to pay for the off street spot or not.   A good deal for the renter, not so good for a neighborhood with limited on onstreet parking.

  • Jim P. October 13, 2019 (11:59 am)

    Not enough parking.  I do not drive so have no skin in this directly but parking in and around Westwood is getting tighter each year.Ten years ago when I moved in you could always find a spot right in front of our place or immediately across the street.  Now, not nearly as much to the point of inconvenience for visitors deliveries.

  • anonyme October 13, 2019 (1:11 pm)

    Same here, Jim.  I’ve never owned a car, but these plans are completely unrealistic, creating parking messes in the surrounding neighborhoods as well as extra emissions as drivers circle around looking for spaces.   The only sane way to do this is to mandate that tenants not own vehicles – and that will never happen.

  • A welcoming neighbor October 13, 2019 (5:44 pm)

    Nice! So glad they decided against storage. It’s great to see delridge continue coming to life. 

  • WS Resident October 14, 2019 (8:09 am)

    You can always tell the health of a neighborhood by the number of storage facilities.  

  • Mickymse October 14, 2019 (5:13 pm)

    There isn’t “inadequate” parking here… It’s very simple. If you need a dedicated parking space for your car then DON’T RENT HERE. That’s it. You don’t have to give up your car. You just have to accept that people sometimes build something for people other than you. No one complains that it should be all family-sized units–or, conversely, all single studios–so why does everyone always insist that a building needs to have parking because that’s what YOU need?

  • one October 14, 2019 (7:30 pm)

    I really hate riding bikes. Not good at it. Scared of it. Especially in hilly Seattle.   Ride and let live.

  • Aaron October 14, 2019 (9:13 pm)

    59 units and no parking on that little lot? Sounds like another DESC homeless housing project.

    • WSB October 14, 2019 (9:24 pm)

      There is no indication a nonprofit developer is involved here.

  • skeeter October 15, 2019 (3:16 pm)

     All these folks asking for off-street parking spaces.  Are you INSANE?  The traffic on Delridge during rush hour is already terrible!!  Delridge is so backed up everyone is driving on the side residential streets.  Last week I counted over 30 cars backed up on 26th Ave SW (that is a 20mph residential side street!!!)  Why would you want *more* parking spaces?  More parking spaces equals more cars!  I’m the complete opposite.  I want *fewer* parking spaces.  People and businesses need to get where they need to go.  We should be actively removing parking spaces wherever we can. 

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