DEVELOPMENT: New proposal for long-vacant, vandalized 5242-5258 California SW site

(2021 WSB photo of part of the site, which also includes 2 ex-restaurants to the south)

4:26 PM: The long-dormant, frequently vandalized development site in the 5200 block of California SW – two former restaurants and a former strip mall – has a new plan, according to what we just found in online city files: An assisted-living complex. An early-stage site plan filed with the city Tuesday shows the proposal is from Aegis Living, which already has one West Seattle assisted-living/memory-care complex, in west Admiral. We reported one year ago that the site was back on the market, after a plan to redevelop it as townhouses stalled, and the listing has had the notation “(sale) pending” for some time; King County Assessor records do not yet show a completed sale. The site is zoned for four-sstory mixed-use development (NC2-40). We’re contacting Aegis to find out more about their plan, which the city website summarizes simply as “new assisted living and life neighborhood building.”

7:17 PM: We’ve heard back from an Aegis spokesperson who says there’s not a lot to say as this is so early-stage but promises some information tomorrow.

THURSDAY MORNING UPDATE: In response to our inquiry, we’ve received this statement from Walter Braun, Aegis Living’s Chief Development Officer:

Aegis Living is in the early stages of a potential second development in West Seattle. Our team has loved being a part of West Seattle and hope to bring another Aegis Living assisted living and memory care community to the area. It is too early to share details, but we can confirm we have signed a purchase and sales agreement to explore this development. We are excited about the potential project, and as we continue in our due diligence, are hopeful we can share more details soon.

45 Replies to "DEVELOPMENT: New proposal for long-vacant, vandalized 5242-5258 California SW site"

  • CarDriver July 20, 2022 (4:35 pm)

    With hospitals full of people that need to move to a facility like this we need it! However……will they be able to actually hire enough employees to work there???

    • Curious July 20, 2022 (6:34 pm)

      This will not be a nursing home or rehab facility that accepts people from hospitals with insurance/Medicaid/Medicare, but rather an assisted living/memory care facility for which you have to pay out of pocket. It will be a place for those who can no longer live independently at home, and from my understanding it’s not inexpensive. So, unfortunately, I’m not certain it will provide relief for the hospitals.

      • Tameeagle July 21, 2022 (7:04 am)

        This is a correct assessment mostly. ALFs do have memory care units which can take some pressure off of SNFs but one must either have a significant amount of money or excellent long term care insurance to be able to live in an Aegis or other ALF.  It is also possible to find better care for less money at an adult family home but if living in a large community is a priority and you have capital then these are an option and can take some placement  burden off the community with their memory care units.

  • Jay West July 20, 2022 (4:58 pm)

    I’ve heard staffing has been the choke point. Assisted living and nursing care were understaffed for years before the pandemic. The pandemic just made it worse… as staff got sick, stayed sick, and left.

  • Sam July 20, 2022 (5:51 pm)

    They will desperately need to make the intersection safer for pedestrians then

    • Ferns July 20, 2022 (7:12 pm)

      Doubt the inhabitants will leave the property. If it were mixed care levels with senior apartments – definitely! 

    • Oerthehill July 20, 2022 (7:52 pm)

      Ferns: Many of the Aegis residents living at the Admiral location do leave, and some even independently on foot to do their own shopping. They will definitely need to improve pedestrian access, just like 47th and Admiral. I hope this location will offer more affordable options. It’s a wonderful place but cheapest rooms with minimal svcs start out around 8,000.00 a month. I hear the food is fantastic though!

  • Hi July 20, 2022 (6:12 pm)

    Rookie question: how and at what link do you search properties for development activities?

  • WS since 2020 July 20, 2022 (6:13 pm)

    I don’t have a good feeling about this plan. I walk by here often and admire the local art that has been done. This would be an ideal area for a tiny home village or at least a space reserved for individuals experiencing houselessness.

    • Derek July 20, 2022 (7:33 pm)

      I like this idea a lot. We have like no tiny home villages over here and it’s a great cheap housing option. How can we help propose this? 

    • Mike Wall July 20, 2022 (7:43 pm)

      Not sure why you would admire graffiti and vandalism? 

      • Frustrated July 20, 2022 (8:31 pm)

        Might be one of the vandals themselves. I’ll never understand why some people think damaging/defacing someone else’s property is ok.

    • Anne July 20, 2022 (7:44 pm)

      It’s a perfect spot for what’s being proposed.

    • B W July 20, 2022 (7:54 pm)

      This must be sarcasm.

    • wscommuter July 20, 2022 (9:23 pm)

      “houselessness”? … please tell me that you’re being funny.   I swear there is a direct correlation between the distorting of language and the extremism of one’s views.   This is privately owned property being developed by, you know, the owner.

      • Mr J July 21, 2022 (3:17 pm)

        Words matter, houseless community/population  is the preferred language. It’s not extremism. 

        • wscommuter July 21, 2022 (4:13 pm)

          Words do indeed matter.  Please do enlighten.  What, precisely, is the qualitative, evaluative or other relative difference between “homeless” and “houseless”?  And who is in charge of these decisions?  Was there a memo?  A news release?  Who decides what is “preferred language”?  Preferred by whom?  Was there a poll taken?  A vote?   

    • Lifer July 20, 2022 (10:12 pm)

      Bad idea 2020, remember you are a refugee here, not a missionary 👎🏼

      • Pessoa July 21, 2022 (7:05 am)

        You need missionaries to rouse the lot of you out of your slumber.   Sleepers Awaken. 

  • TJ July 20, 2022 (9:17 pm)

    Why would a private developer ever even think of putting in a tiny home village? Would make zero sense to them. And who would you propose that to? The developer? I can’t tell if that comment is serious or not, but if it really is then economics isn’t a strong point. 

    • helpermonkey July 21, 2022 (9:25 am)

      The city could purchase the property, and install a tiny house village like the very successful one on Meyers Way. I can only imagine the NIMBY commenters here if that were to actually happen. There’s not enough popcorn in the world. 

      • My two cents July 21, 2022 (3:33 pm)

        Helpermonkey  – is this on top of the budgeted $173 million for 2022?

      • Mel July 22, 2022 (5:30 am)

        Yep NIMBY commenter here. Not afraid to admit I don’t want that in my neighborhood.

        • helpermonkey July 22, 2022 (12:41 pm)

          “I got mine, screw the rest of ya!” Got it. 

      • Auntie July 22, 2022 (11:46 am)

        Since it has been vacant (and assuming for sale) all this time, the city had ample opportunity to buy it and develop tiny house village. That didn’t happen. And it’s not going to happen. 

    • James July 22, 2022 (10:49 am)

      You guys complain about housing and the homeless then balk at possible solutions? THIS is the problem. NIMBYism. It’s like saying you hate the poor without saying it. Gross behavior that people are just admitting this publicly now. Shameful.

      • snowskier July 22, 2022 (1:25 pm)

        I don’t hate the poor at all.  I hate the junkies and criminals that we loop in with the remainder of the homeless.  I hate the giant process that seems to have minimal outcomes which uses the $173M a year we spend on minimal outcomes.  The way I see it, that $173M a year could purchase a ton of yearly rentals at apartments for many, many, many people in need at a price much cheaper than trying to build new units at $300K per unit.

        • james July 22, 2022 (4:29 pm)

          I know way more housed junkies. I bet you don’t mind them though. Tiny homes will not be 300k per unit either. 

  • Mj July 20, 2022 (10:10 pm)

    TJ – developers are constructing SEDU’s, small efficiency dwelling units, all over Seattle and beyond.  A person working FT can afford rent for SEDU, also called Appodment units!

    • My two cents July 21, 2022 (3:35 pm)

      There is a distinction tween the “tiny village” (focus on homeless) compare to “appodments” (rental income).

  • Michael Waldo July 21, 2022 (10:38 am)

    It is a shame that one of my favorite Thai restaurant at that location had to close. They could have been open all theses years as nothing has been done to the property. I have seen this on other sites. Business is evicted and the building sits and his tagged and vandalized.

    • WSB July 21, 2022 (10:47 am)

      I didn’t get into all the site backstory but Thaitan has been closed since 2019, Papa John’s to its north since 2017. The strip mall held a realtor and nail salon that moved elsewhere. When Thaitan closed in 2019, the previous proposal mentioned in the story was still actively going through Design Review – before the then-owners put it on hold.

  • Swensi July 21, 2022 (11:14 am)

    I miss Bison Creek Pizza.

    • CarDriver July 21, 2022 (12:38 pm)

      I miss Herfy’s and Skippers and Sambos/Dennys. 

      • SWENSI July 22, 2022 (9:59 am)

        I do not miss the chain restaurants that you list.

  • snowskier July 21, 2022 (11:27 am)

    Here’s hoping it progresses faster than the lot next to Ephesus.  It is a great location for seniors to use a flat, safe, pedestrian friendly route for their grocery, pharmacy and other errands in the junction.

    • Mel July 22, 2022 (5:32 am)


  • JustJedSaid July 23, 2022 (3:36 pm)

    Here I was holding out hope that Taco Bell would take an interest in the corner lot and bring back the fire pit and the Bell Beefer while they’re at it.

    • Auntie July 23, 2022 (5:34 pm)

      Yeah … they’ve been there, done that. ;-P

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