DEVELOPMENT: Feedback sought for 4515 44th SW apartment proposal

(King County Assessor’s Office photo)

Three months ago, we reported on an early-stage proposal for the former CDE Software site at 4515 44th SW [map] in The Junction. Now, West Seattle-headquartered developer Blueprint Capital is in the “early community outreach” process for the project. Blueprint’s Jade Aramaki sent the announcement:

The new development will include a new five-story apartment building containing small efficiency dwelling units and 1 bedrooms, no parking proposed.

I’m reaching out because I want to hear from you, the community, about this project. You can engage with this process a couple of ways. First, you can fill out the survey located here. The comment period will be open until July 20th. Second, you can email me directly (jade@blueprintcap.com) with any questions you may have; I’d be happy to have a dialogue with you. Third, if you live in close proximity you will receive a postcard with ways to engage. I have attached a digital copy of this information, feel free to post this on blogs, print out on bulletins, etc. Note that any information you share could be made public, so please refrain from sharing personal or sensitive information.

Due to the nature of our current environment with the stay-home order in place there will be no in-person outreach or public meeting. Therefore your input is even more important and appreciated.

A document in the project’s online file says 37 units are planned. According to Blueprint’s flyer, construction is still at least two years away.

41 Replies to "DEVELOPMENT: Feedback sought for 4515 44th SW apartment proposal"

  • DillonPPP July 1, 2020 (4:11 pm)

    I meet a lot of people here in Seattle and have yet to meet just one person that lives here without a car.  I don’t understand the logic of building all these apartment complexes with little to no parking.  It is going to make the area unbearable for anyone needing parking for any reason…. and that is pretty much everyone.

    • Jill Loblaw July 2, 2020 (6:23 am)

      Amen. Considering we have no way to get into and of West Seattle easily, it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to build more living units.

    • Invisible July 2, 2020 (6:59 am)

      I’ve been in West Seattle 19 years without a car. But no one pays me any attention. 

    • Wsresident July 2, 2020 (12:16 pm)

      I lived in the small apartment building across from where this place is, and it was no parking. 75 units and no-one I met had a car. Also, the townhome I purchased, I’d say less than half the people in my complex have cars. So….

    • Macs July 2, 2020 (3:04 pm)

      Didn’t have a car when I was working at Youngstown on Delridge and living in Queen Anne, and managed it just fine. Not knowing someone without a car is more a reflection of the company you keep, not the reality for many residents in the city.

      • George July 2, 2020 (5:17 pm)

        “ Not knowing someone without a car is more a reflection of the company you keep, not the reality for many residents in the city.”+1 on that

        • Foop July 3, 2020 (7:51 am)

          Also we need to move past this idea of ‘thats not the way it is now so it should never be’ ideally we’ll all know more carless people, ideally that won’t be hard to get around and it will become normal. Change is inevitable, Don’t be a dinosaur, look where they ended up.

  • john July 1, 2020 (5:00 pm)

    Blueprint is the prominent developer of chintzy box houses and apartments in West Seattle.  Their questionable practices are well addressed in past WSB posts. Their work has left an indelible stain that will last into the next century of West Seattle housing.This is being said by a long time proponent  of  West Seattle urbanism and housing availability and a developer of quality architecture.

    • KM July 2, 2020 (3:16 pm)

      So, this is being said by a competitor?

  • Robert Tuschhoff July 1, 2020 (5:59 pm)

    You lost me at no parking.  I live right behind it on 45th Ave SW.  There’s no parking as it is.  Where do people think the new residents will be able to park?   Not everyone takes the bus or rides a bike.  

    • AMD July 1, 2020 (8:40 pm)

      I’m sure that you, as a responsible car owner, purchased a house that included off-street car storage instead of assuming the taxpayers and the city would provide free car storage to you, so why does it matter that there is potential for irresponsible car owners to consume more street parking spaces in the future?

      • flimflam July 1, 2020 (10:03 pm)

        that is an extremely tired and lazy argument…

        • tsurly July 2, 2020 (11:47 am)

          No more tired and lazy than the ” I choose to live here but complain that there is nowhere to park my car(s)” argument.

      • Jill Loblaw July 2, 2020 (6:26 am)

        Not everyone has a garage …

    • Chemist July 2, 2020 (11:26 am)

      They’re not required to provide car parking (big yikes on no ADA parking for 37 units, in my opinion) but they are required to provide 38 units of indoor, secure bike parking that can also accommodate trikes and cargo bikes (presuming the design of 37 units of housing is still correct).

      And each unit can request several RPZ parking passes (4+1 guest pass if I recall correctly).

  • john July 1, 2020 (6:45 pm)

    What? Your building has parking, Robert.  

  • East Coast Cynic July 1, 2020 (6:45 pm)

    Supposedly, with a project planned for a high public transit area, e.g., C Line, future light rail, the developers are not obligated to provide parking. 

    • David July 1, 2020 (8:11 pm)

      Ah, the wonders of local government run by people taking large bribes– excuse me, I meant “contributions”– from developers.
      “Developers are allowed to claim parking is someone else’s problem” is a really good example, but my favorite is: They get complete exemption from property tax… and all they have to do is keep only 10% of their apartments at a bad joke of “affordable” (which can be up to $1520 for a studio, for example) for people with lower incomes.
      The standard is 30% of income for housing. So in Washington, “affordable” rent is… you have to make $60,000 a year to afford a studio. Supposedly MFTE helps reduce homelessness, but in reality we’re giving them a huge rebate for doing practically nothing. In most areas, the “affordable” limit (again, on just 10% of the apartments) is higher than the median rent for the area.
      Developers are long overdue to pay their fair share, instead of getting puppets like Inslee and Durkan to bill it to the working class. The myriad of regressive taxes we pay (tolls, tabs, sales tax, etc) adds up fast. No exaggeration, compare for yourself: The most progressive state in the country actually has one of the worst tax systems in the nation when it comes to transferring taxes the wealthy should be paying, onto the backs of people who are barely making it by.

      • John July 2, 2020 (5:26 pm)

        David, I believe you are confused about both parking requirements and the MFTE.  Developers are not claiming parking is someone else’s problem.  Rather the city grid of streets is built out with no room for more traffic. The MTFE requires follow through with compliance and the tax exemption is only for the MFTE units, not the whole building.Developers pay the same taxes as other Seattle businesses that escape scorn.  Developing property is a risky business venture, with hundreds wiped out and bankrupt with every downturn of the economy. Regarding their fare share, compare developers to our local giants.  Amazon, Starbucks, Boeing (yeh, based in Chicago!) and Microsoft  pay little to no taxes while raking in massive subsidies.

        • David July 7, 2020 (4:58 pm)

          If you’re going to be dishonest about developers being exempt from property tax thanks to MFTE, at least be dishonest about things that aren’t easily verified. The only thing not exempt is the land the apartments are built on or “nonhousing-related improvements”.
          https://app.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=84.14.020
          https://www.psrc.org/multifamily-tax-exemption
          As to “Developing property is a risky business venture”, cry me a river. Having a job is a far more risky source of income than “because I own things”, but are people who have a job exempt from taxes?
          As to Amazon et al paying little to no taxes? “They don’t have to pay their fair share, why can’t I get away with it too?” is not a very endearing argument. And if you haven’t been paying attention to the news, that’s changing. Hopefully your turn will come.

          • John July 7, 2020 (6:09 pm)

             Dishonest? This is your link -“(2) When a local government adopts guidelines pursuant to RCW  84.14.030(2) and includes conditions that must be satisfied with respect to individual dwelling units, rather than with respect to the multiple-unit housing as a whole or some minimum portion thereof, the exemption may, at the local government’s discretion, be limited to the value of the qualifying improvements allocable to those dwelling units that meet the local guidelines.”Apples and oranges. Having a steady source of income, a job, entails more protections such as unemployment, health insurance, and retirement plans.  ‘Because I own things’ also means when the market crashes so do you.  Many government and education jobs have tenure or union protections.Regarding the big players, they should pay.  The government workers should not be guaranteed, nor the unions, nor the construction trades.  Let it be a free market to see where the chips fall. And finally, my turn has already come as I don’t own, manage, develop or live in an apartment.  I am a long time Housing First supporter, appalled at the system that denies a human right to shelter.  To those ends, I defend any and all efforts to increase housing for the homeless and low income.

          • David July 8, 2020 (3:23 pm)

            Read your own quote: “may, at the local government’s discretion”.
            “Local govts CAN do xyz if they choose” is not proof that they did. I’ve seen no evidence that any have, and I have better things to do than continue rebutting someone who’s going to gaslight, in the hopes that someone won’t carefully read/listen to catch false characterizations.
            Worth addressing, but only because it’s darkly humorous: Only someone who hasn’t worked in a very long time could seriously believe that “having a job” is a protected source of income and benefits that people can always rely on, by comparison to the poor landlords who have it so rough because the property value might decrease. Or believe this would persuade anyone landlords should continue to be exempt from taxes, while payroll and property taxes continue to break the backs of people who work for a living.
            Jonathan Swift had it right in A Modest Proposal, going on three centuries ago.

  • Daphne B July 1, 2020 (11:34 pm)

    Developing a property right now in West Seattle seems idiotic at best. Doesn’t everyone notice the proliferation of For Rent and For Sale signs? No bridge, traffic is a nightmare, West Seattle residents aren’t raising heck about the bridge emergency cutting off 125,000 people from the city, nobody wants to live here. Develop away…

    • Ell July 2, 2020 (11:10 am)

      Oh yea.  What a great idea.  Did anyone inform these developers there is no way on or off this island?  Let’s build some more traffic congestion here and try to fit buses into the very narrow inefficient roadways we already contend with!  Maybe we can use the bridge for parking and then walk the rest of the way to 44th SW.  Wake up mayor, handle some of the mistakes already made by you.

      • WSB July 2, 2020 (11:33 am)

        As noted, the development firm is based in West Seattle (just north of The Junction), so they are very well aware of the bridge situation.

      • John July 2, 2020 (4:50 pm)

        ELL, most of us who grew up here are aware that West Seattle is actually a peninsula.

  • Ice July 2, 2020 (1:55 am)

    New construction doesn’t go up overnight and this building will likely not be for 4 or 5 years.

  • 22blades July 2, 2020 (7:49 am)

    This seems like zoning gone awry. Social engineering to reduce the carbon footprint is sounding like an excuse for developers to maximize their profits at the expense of the community. This community cannot absorb the fallacy of “car-less homeowners”. The Seattle  Office of Planning & Community Development, and,  Department of Construction & Inspections work for the construction industry, not you or me.

    • John July 2, 2020 (5:15 pm)

      No, 22BLADES.  The Seattle Planning and Development and DCI serve at the behest of the elected Seattle government (city council and mayor).  There is no indication of corruption within the SDCI.  Please address your grievances with city officialsThere are indeed “car-less homeowners.”  And their numbers are growing.  The community can absorb many additional people.  Not all of them used the bridge to commute  to work.  If the issue is storing cars, it can easily be addressed by monetizing all street parking. There are already too many cars in West Seattle for the existing grid.   The irrational reliance on cars is finally being addressed after generations of denial.  I am embarrassed that Seattle has  delayed mass transportation  for  50 years.  The future is a hybrid of transportation options, home working and enjoying the never before bounty of offerings in West Seattle.

  • Seabruce July 2, 2020 (8:14 am)

    I wish the City would put a moratorium on increased density in the peninsula north of  White Center until after SDOT has decided what they are doing to fix/replace the Bridge 

  • payattention July 2, 2020 (6:13 pm)

    “Carless” people…REALLY??. That means you DON’T own a car. That means you don’t RENT a car. That means you DON’T use rideshare or taxi. That means you DON’T ride with someone. If that’s you GREAT. There are some prolific commenters here on the blog that promote a “non car” life but turns out they OWN AND USE a car. Waiting for someone to ACTUALLY lead by example.  

    • heartless July 2, 2020 (6:35 pm)

      No, that’s not what any of that means.  It just means that a garage isn’t necessary, street parking is no concern, and that most of the time they don’t drive.  I promise you, that is what people mean when they say they are “carless”–all the other stuff is just your own weird criteria for what the word might mean to you.    

  • John July 2, 2020 (7:53 pm)

    Yes REALLY, some people are car-less, but not in the absolute that PAYATTENTION extrapolates.  Car-less means for the most part not using a car.  Some people in West Seattle rely on bikes with many more embracing the e-bikes.  There are growing numbers of people choosing to commute to jobs, shop for groceries, take the kids to school and even go out to eat & drink without the use of a car.  Some people own and use a car for excursions like camping/skiing while keeping the vehicle garaged during the week.Some people are responsible for a ‘company car’ that the use solely for work.Admittedly, as a proponent of mass transit in Seattle for 50 years, I am not one of the car-less in Seattle. I do try to practice an awareness of car use,  limit my driving and combine stops, but I do own a vehicle. Does advocating for less reliance on cars, for a better tomorrow, while owning one, make me a hypocrite?

  • payattention July 2, 2020 (8:39 pm)

    Heartless. Yes, that’s what it means. You either own a car or you don’t.  

    • heartless July 2, 2020 (9:06 pm)

      “You either own a car or you don’t.”

      Yep, and people who are carless don’t own a car.  

      Glad we agree, but a bit confused about why you went on your previous rant.

  • Stevie J July 2, 2020 (10:53 pm)

    It’s very sad that people care more about storing their own private cars on public property than they do about homes for other human beings on private property. Let’s focus on the people. For heaven’s sake, this is a few blocks from FOUR grocery stores and across the street from a Rapid Ride stop. If any place doesn’t need parking, this is it.

  • payattention July 3, 2020 (6:54 am)

    It’s not a rant. It’s reality. I GUARENTEE you that EVERYONE that owns a car care’s where they park it. And, hate to disappoint you they really do try to park it as close to their residence as they can. 

    • john July 3, 2020 (11:37 am)

      Another absolute guarantee that is false, as shown by the dozens of abandoned cars littered on West Seattle streets.   The owners of these cars do not care, guaranteed! And of course, when you park on the street you want to park closer rather that further away from your home.  What does that have to do with so many car trips that the streets are beyond traffic capacity?  Eliminating tens of thousands of West Seattle residents and their  cars will not eliminate congestion, that is how bad it is.Monetizing street parking could absolutely eliminate parking shortages.  It is a well proven practice.  Paying for parking would not alleviate traffic, but would slowly alter the course of  dependent and thoughtless car use.   Many West Seattle homeowners have stuffed their garages with things than cars, which they in tern then expect to park directly in front of their homes.  They feel strongly about “their parking spot” even though it is city property.  They feel, that although they do not use their garage or driveway for parking, new construction must provide parking garages for actual parking (whether needed or not), to prevent renters from doing exactly what they have been doing…parking on their streets.

      • David July 7, 2020 (5:21 pm)

        Oh yeah! Just what Seattle needs, “monetizing street parking”! Another regressive tax, instead of going back to making developers pay property tax like everyone else.
        “Hey everyone, I know we already charge everyone over $100 a year to have a car (whether they make $20k or $200k), but I bet people could afford another $20 or $30 a month to make it $400 or $500!”
        Thank you for enlightening us. If only we had realized sooner – it’s the fault of all these lazy poors who don’t own a garage, and their “thoughtless car use”. (I’d say how I actually feel about this, but I don’t think WSBlog wants that kind of language in the comments.)

    • heartless July 3, 2020 (2:06 pm)

      You:  â€śCarless” people…REALLY??. That means you DON’T own a car. That means you don’t RENT a car. That means you DON’T use rideshare or taxi. That means you DON’T ride with someone.
      Also you: 
      It’s not a rant.

      It was totally a rant, and it was completely wrong.  Imagine saying the same thing about somebody who is homeless:  Homeless people…REALLY?? That means you DON’T own a home.  That means you don’t spend nights in a motel.  That means you DON’T ever sleep in a shelter.  That means you DON’T crash on someone’s couch.

      See?  Doesn’t that seem silly?  So please stop it, thanks.

  • Milo July 4, 2020 (2:20 pm)

    After I read everyone’s comments I took the time to fill out the survey and voiced my concerns. Please fill out the survey & let this developer know how this may / will affect the community at large.

Sorry, comment time is over.