FOR SALE: 2 buildings on California SW in The Junction

Seen on a periodic check of commercial real-estate listings, 2 in “downtown West Seattle”:

(Image: Google Maps Street View)

4707-4709 CALIFORNIA SW: This building near the southwest corner oF California and Alaska is described as a “multi-tenant retail investment and development opportunity,” and has just been listed at $3,250,000. It’s 6,786 square feet; HALA upzoned the site to the potential for 9-story redevelopment. The brochure notes that the three tenants – Bin 41, Pharmaca, and Flying Apron – have leases running at least three to five more years.

4822 CALIFORNIA SW: This 5,750-sf building on the south edge of The Junction hit the market last month, listed at $1,950,000. It’s home to Than Brothers Pho. This listing also touts the site as a “redevelopment opportunity,” noting a “feasibility study” was done showing “an opportunity to build 55 units.” It’s zoned for up to 7 stories.

16 Replies to "FOR SALE: 2 buildings on California SW in The Junction"

  • John September 26, 2020 (10:14 pm)

    Wow. Little old West Seattle will become the new U District. 24 hour street noise, more crime, no parking etc.What a shame.

    • WSB September 26, 2020 (10:32 pm)

      The heart of The Junction has been zoned for much taller, denser development for 30+ years. If these buildings sell, it’s no guarantee that will happen any time soon, but as noted, that’s how the parcels are being marketed. – TR

      • 1994 September 27, 2020 (9:56 am)

        Yep, looks like the urban village concept approved or zoned many years ago is finally arriving.

    • WS New Guy September 26, 2020 (10:44 pm)

      This is called progress. It is what keeps our economy vibrant! If not happy move away! 

      • Jim September 27, 2020 (9:02 am)

        New Guy – “Progress” would not be the best term for it.  “Transition” maybe?  People who have been here a long time and miss the old days will move away and new people like you will replace them.  But your attitude sucks.

      • SlimJim September 27, 2020 (9:20 am)

        I would argue it is simply change. Whether it is progress is an opinion. The two are not always the same.

    • JVP September 27, 2020 (7:25 am)

      There’s tons of free parking in The Junction. More than anywhere else in Seattle, and more than any city I can think of. 

    • Michael September 27, 2020 (12:53 pm)

      I lived in the junction for many years.  Most of the apartments went up after I arrived.  Each addition made the neighborhood more lively and enjoyable. Without these apartments and density California Ave would have empty storefronts.

      • HappyOnAlki September 28, 2020 (12:34 pm)

        Hear, hear!

  • MKE September 26, 2020 (10:35 pm)

    Barf. There goes (more of) the neighborhood.

  • East Coast Cynic September 27, 2020 (1:10 am)

    If the funding doesn’t come through for a repair and or rebuild of the WS Highbridge, I’m wondering if it may cool interest in developers paying up for potential up-zoned redevelopment.  Or will enough renters and retailers believe that public transportation utilizing one functional small bridge will be sufficient for long term use, with a light rail solution 10-15 years out.

    • AMD September 27, 2020 (2:46 am)

      It will take years to get through design, permitting, and building.  Right now there’s no reason to believe the closure will carry on past 2-3 years so I doubt that will be a major factor in decision-making at this time.

  • miws September 27, 2020 (9:23 am)

    A note that may be of interest regarding the 4822 property. I lived next door, to the south, in a small apartment above Venable & Wing Law Offices (now, for nearly three decades, James Barnecut Law Offices), from 1978-85. When I first moved in, “Modern Comfort” occupied 4822. They were a furniture reupholstering business. In 1982, a bank, Citizen’s Bank, I believe, had been occupying that space for a time, and had plans for a new building, probably only 3 or 4 stories, with apartments and their bank branch. I don’t recall if other retail space was planned. As I recall, it was going to also occupy the lot to the north where Courtesy Tire has been for years (its predecessor, Firestone, had been across the street). At the time, that was what had been entirely a dirt lot, and when the bank moved in they paved a part of it next to the building for their parking lot. I don’t recall if the building was going to fill the entire two lots, or if it was going to be part building, part surface parking lot. I think it may have been the latter. This project was under very serious consideration, to the point of warranting a decent-sized local newspaper article describing the project complete with an artist’s rendering of the building. I don’t recall for sure why the project never went through. Perhaps some sort of bank acquisition that either absorbed or dissolved Citizen’s Bank. —Mike

    • Lincoln Park Mom September 27, 2020 (11:38 am)

      Thanks for the history lesson Mike.  I love hearing stories of West Seattle.  I’ve only been here since 1995 but I’ve seen a lot of change in that time.  It is losing it’s small town qualities that I’ve always loved but I welcome the opportunity for growth.  Hoping to see more small independent businesses come in.  I hope a height restriction is in place though.  I hate losing the sunshine on California Ave.

  • AMK September 27, 2020 (12:06 pm)

    I get the growth and progress, and for the most part, I’m ok with it. I just wish we could keep those two blocks of the junction small and quaint. Makes me a bit sad to see some of the small town quaint-ness of West Seattle disappear with all of this development. While I understand this is only for sale right now, it’s likely to be bought by someone who wants to develop to what it’s zoned for. 

  • Stevie J September 28, 2020 (10:15 pm)

    These are very boring buildings with no character. I’m surprised that the junction building is so old (1920) and that the Than Brothers one is from 1926, but this is evidence that age doesn’t make something notable.

     It’s pretty amazing there are that many single story commercial buildings like these around here to begin with. I’m reading a book about London, and they had five story buildings in the 1500s. I was sure these would be from the 1950s during the peak of the auto age. 

    It’s a pain to maintain old buildings, so it will be very nice for them to be replaced with modern ones with modern safety/environmental standards and room for more businesses and neighbors. 

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