FOLLOWUP: 2 updates on ‘affordable apartments’ project for Westwood driver-licensing office site

(King County Assessor photo)

Five months ago, we reported on an early-stage “affordable apartments” project planned for 8830 25th SW, currently the site of the West Seattle driver-licensing office, across the street from the east side of Westwood Village. Today, we have two updates: First, the plan is now open for comments as part of the Administrative Design Review process – no public meetings, but public feedback is requested. The project is now described as “a 6-story, 144-unit apartment building (with p)arking for 20 vehicles proposed.” You have two weeks to get comments in for project 3040124-EG. (We’re still trying to find the actual design document and will add it here when we do.) Second, the Department of Licensing says it’s found a new West Seattle location that’s “very close” to this one. However, a DOL spokesperson told us today, they haven’t finalized the plan so they’re not yet disclosing where it is. But if all goes well, they expect to move “in spring or summer” of next year.

12 Replies to "FOLLOWUP: 2 updates on 'affordable apartments' project for Westwood driver-licensing office site"

  • MeganP63 November 10, 2022 (7:43 pm)

    144 unit apartment building with parking for 20 vehicles proposed……..  that makes sense……lol

    • WSB November 10, 2022 (8:35 pm)

      If you can’t visualize the site, it’s within steps of one RapidRide line and soon a second. And across the street from a vastly underutilized collection of parking spaces (aka Westwood Village). Perhaps the center will consider offering some of its spaces for lease, as is done with at least one other huge and underutilized West Seattle parking lot, the one surrounding Rite-Aid south of The Junction … TR

      • East Coast Cynic November 10, 2022 (10:12 pm)

        SRM has another apartment complex under construction in Lower Queen Anne – The Vivo Apartments – with 281 units and 158 parking stalls.  That project also has considerable public transportation on its doorstep.   While the complex has more units, it has a much higher ratio of parking spaces to units than the Westwood Village Project.  I guess Northern Seattlites are entitled to more parking than the southbound ones:/If the developers could work out offering spaces for lease in WWV that would be a considerable help, because outside of the WWV mall there is very limited street parking in and around the project site.  In the absence of leased parking or increased parking in the project, the street parking situation could get very chaotic.

        • Just Guessing November 11, 2022 (7:35 am)

          The nearby Longfellow Creek and Roxhill Bog indicate groundwater is pretty shallow in that area.  The proposed redevelopment probably can’t accommodate two stories of underground parking like the Vivo apartments.  There are incentives to build affordable housing, but the number of units still has to work out to make private developers take on these projects.

        • Monetize ROW Parking November 11, 2022 (9:04 am)

          The parking for the building in Lower Queen Anne does indeed offer parking.But our East Coast Cynic failed to note that the cost of that parking is listed as $225 per month.  
          That is separate and above the rent per unit. And, of course, there is plenty of “free” street parking in the neighborhood.  
          Within a block is Trenton St. which is so available for parking, an ‘unhoused’ caravan has recently established itself.
          Monetizing all street parking is the only equitable way to address parking ‘concerns’ and increase availability.

        • East Coast Cynic November 11, 2022 (10:12 am)

          The groundwater issue is noted, however, you’ve got a condo across the street from the project with less than half the number of units of this project and twice the amount of parking spaces.  It might be tough to add more parking in that footprint but the parking headaches for those that don’t win the “lottery” for the 20 available spaces will be immense.   I am not sure that renters (100 plus units?) will want to walk three, four blocks uphill on Trenton to go to their parked cars!  If the developers don’t reduce the number of units to something that scales better to the surrounding area,  they may want to consider working with WWV for a parking leasing arrangement for the renters that don’t get the limited spaces and don’t want to schlep up and down multiple blocks on Trenton to get to and from their cars. Maybe prioritize car-less applicants?

          Logically there shouldn’t be a need for cars given one rapid ride line and the 120, however, many people who live in the area have and need cars to commute to areas beyond the reach of our buses and are situated in units that scale better to the neighborhood with regards to parking space availability to units. I can see the development having a very disruptive impact in the absence of rationally dealing with the parking situation.

        • Estabon November 11, 2022 (11:18 am)

          The Queen Anne project are market rate units and not considered “affordable”. The WWV site is really small so they probably had to choose a higher number of affordable units over parking to make it worthwhile. They will definitely still charge an exorbitant rate for parking which would end up making the overall cost unaffordable to most who might live there. Because that’s just what rental management companies do. Extra charges for “amenities” don’t have to be affordable in affordable apartment communities. Which is ridiculous. Go capitalism! 

  • 1994 November 10, 2022 (11:22 pm)

    I certainly hope the DOL finds a location nearby. A West Seattle location truly needs to be retained otherwise it is a trek over to Queen Anne, Renton, Kent, Shoreline…the other closest locations.  The DOL has not kept up with the need for offices in the greater Puget Sound region. Not everyone can do things on-line and some tasks do require in person visits. 

  • Rhonda November 11, 2022 (12:50 am)

    I’d like to see beehive apartments like this be built over the Westwood Village stores instead of across the street from them. There’s about 5 to 7 stories of unused air space above Westwood Village that could be used to turn it into a quaint little urban village buzzing with healthy activity instead of a stop-and-go convenience plaza.

  • Craig Threlkeld November 15, 2022 (4:17 pm)

    Here’s a whacky idea:If you own a car (or a few cars) maybe you don’t move somewhere that doesn’t have parking.That’s a hard concept for some to grasp, but it makes fairly solid sense to most of the rest.

    • Flivver November 15, 2022 (5:15 pm)

      Craig Threlkeld. Agree! And if you don’t own a car don’t move somewhere that doesn’t have transit or bike lanes and demand they get built and transit extends there. Solid sense, right?

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