DEVELOPMENT: Junction project changes to half-hotel; Aegis Living gets next Design Review date

Two development notes:

(Rendering of 4448 California by Atelier Drome)

JUNCTION DEVELOPMENT CHANGES TO HALF-HOTEL: What’s expected to be the next West Seattle Junction redevelopment project to start construction, 4448 California SW, is open for comments again because of a change in the plan: What was going to be a 7-story building with commercial spaces under apartments is now changing to ground-floor commercial plus three floors of hotel, three floors of apartments. We’ve had a message out to the project team since this appeared in the city-circulated Land Use Information Bulletin last Thursday; they haven’t responded, so we went digging through a virtual sheaf of documents to try to find out more. The documents show the hotel rooms are proposed for floors 2, 3, and 4; this document explains the rationale, that developers believe West Seattle needs more hotel rooms since right now there’s only one hotel (The Grove in The Triangle), and that The Junction is the perfect place for it. They are proposing 45 hotel rooms, roughly equal to the number of apartments the revised plan would have (when the project went through Design Review, 90+ apartments were planned). The original plan had no offstreet parking; so far we haven’t found anything in the file suggesting a change in that. The developer’s webpage for the project does not yet reflect the proposed change. If you’re interested in commenting on the new plan, this notice explains how. September 27th is the deadline.

NEXT DESIGN REVIEW DATE FOR AEGIS LIVING: As we’ve been reporting for more than a year, Aegis Living plans a senior-living complex on the site of long-abandoned, much-vandalized commercial buildings at 5252 California SW (and vicinity). Back in February, the Southwest Design Review Board approved the “early design guidance” stage of the 5-story, 100+-unit plan. But the process requires at least one more meeting, for final recommendations, and the city has now set a date for that meeting: 5 pm Thursday, October 19th. Links and design packet will eventually be available here.

55 Replies to "DEVELOPMENT: Junction project changes to half-hotel; Aegis Living gets next Design Review date"

  • onion September 18, 2023 (2:34 pm)

    Thanks for these updates, Tracy & team. They’re always appreciated. While on the subject of development, what’s happening with the former Swedish facility on California? It looked cleaner the last time I passed by, and there’s a small sign about a project office. I seem to recall that Kaiser or some other health care provider was going to move in there.

    • WSB September 18, 2023 (3:45 pm)

      They’re working, it’s still a future Virginia Mason clinic.

  • W/S Native September 18, 2023 (3:24 pm)

    HOTEL WITH NO PARKING!  Yup that’s JUST what the junction needs.

    • John September 18, 2023 (4:16 pm)

      The term “motel” was coined to separate motor hotels (those designed around the new fangled automobile) from regular hotels which did not cater to car parking which had yet existed.  
      I’ve had the experience of staying at The Grove Hotel (which is more a motel parking lot layout) and some guests had no vehicles. 

      With an uncertain future of the dated Grove and the changes being brought to the  triangle which are all owned by the same families, a Junction hotel, even without parking, is welcome to me.

  • Kram September 18, 2023 (3:27 pm)

    “But I thought West Seattle was supposed to be frozen in time and the 15-17k people moving to Seattle every year can figure something else out. I mean, I have a home, so why can’t they find something?” -The Comment Section

  • shotinthefoot September 18, 2023 (3:29 pm)

    still cracking up at the idea of a hotel with no parking. like, do they have no idea how hotels work? 

    • skeeter September 18, 2023 (4:02 pm)

      I wouldn’t worry too much about parking.  The hotel can enter into an agreement with a paid lot close-by to offer parking for guests that have a car.  Many hotel guests won’t have a car — they’ll come and go by transit, rideshare, or local friends giving them a ride.  I’ve stayed at hotels many times without a car.  This is an extremely walkable area.  Super quick walk to restaurants, shops, grocery stores, etc.  

    • DC September 18, 2023 (4:29 pm)

      It would work perfectly for when friends and family fly in! I have been lucky to find spare rooms with friends so far (one bed apartment myself). But knowing this is an option is great!

    • M September 18, 2023 (6:04 pm)

      I generally do not have a car when I stay at a hotel, so I guess they do.

    • WSresident September 18, 2023 (9:16 pm)

      Haha it’s like a real city 🤣🤣

  • Also John September 18, 2023 (3:54 pm)

    45 hotel rooms with no parking provided?!   Someone doesn’t understand the customers will have their own or rental vehicles.  Sure a handful will take a taxi from the airport, but……….come on!

    • Brandon September 18, 2023 (5:54 pm)

      If customers want to rent cars, they will opt for another hotel that caters to that market. This is likely tailored for a short stay visit in West Seattle that can hop on a bus to downtown. Or with the anticipation of the light rail, do the same thing.

      While we may think it’s silly to not provide parking for their guests, they’re the ones making the sacrifice presumably knowing that they’re targeting a different market.

      We can easily all jump on the comments and complain about how much they eventually charge for a night, but that too, within constraints is their prerogative and their customers will stay or look elsewhere.  Simple as that.

  • GreatNews September 18, 2023 (3:58 pm)

    uninspired comments, W/S Native and Shotinthefoot. not everyone traveling wants to or can afford to rent a car. w/o parking, the hotel is able to maximize # of rooms, increasing revenue and decreasing overall costs. additionally, it maximizes taxable revenue per area. not ever business wants to subsidize car parking. disrupting the car-centric status quo is the future; stop dragging us backwards.

    • Brandon September 18, 2023 (8:40 pm)

      True except for “disrupting the car-centric status quo is the future”. That is stifling and prohibits growth. Some might be okay as hamsters in a cage with a wheel and water bottle (smart cities with everything local) but not everybody wants that. We can’t force that life on everyone and call it the future like we’re morally superior to everyone else that has somewhere to go.

      • Wseattleite September 18, 2023 (10:03 pm)


      • GreatNews September 19, 2023 (11:41 am)

        but nearly everyone has been forced into a car centric lifestyle. literally any move from the current infrastructure is going against that status quo, so my statement is true. we can’t support sprawling cities. if you want a single family home that’s fine, but if it’s in the way of a growing city you should look elsewhere. if you want to be a part of a city community, you have to be a part of it not isolated from it spending the majority of your time in your single family home and car. don’t know about you, but walking around my city doesn’t feel hamster-like; driving a car sure does. living in a 15 minute city doesn’t limit your ability to get to say an airport… it actually enables you to go further with less, so I’d argue your “cage” analogy applies better to our current status quo

  • HS September 18, 2023 (4:03 pm)

    Yes to the few floors for a hotel and then a few floors of apartments. 

  • RecreationalDriver September 18, 2023 (4:20 pm)

    Just to provide another perspective… literally all of my family and friends who come to visit fly in and either light rail/bus from the airport or Uber/Lyft. I also travel a lot for work and almost never drive myself to the hotel. I think there’s plenty of demand for a hotel without parking especially in a cool neighborhood with easy public transportation to downtown.

  • WS Res September 18, 2023 (4:36 pm)

    I welcome the hotel option. A colleague came to town and I was shocked to realize The Grove was the only option nearby – and it was booked! Lack of hotel/motel options meant that my colleague went for an Air BNB – and given how they contribute to lack of residential housing, since short-term rentals earn more than long-term, I’d rather be able to direct people to an actual hotel.

    • Tracey September 18, 2023 (8:26 pm)

      Thank you.  Air BNBs aren’t required to finance the extra expense of parking for their guests.  They get to clutter up residential areas.  Hotels should have no higher standard.  Although, I would prefer that both be mandated to require parking for guests.  

  • Alki Jack September 18, 2023 (4:46 pm)

    Yes a Hotel is needed in West Seattle and in the Junction would be perfect……WITH PARKING. At least one stall for each room and assigned to each room specifically. 

    • NoToParkingMins September 19, 2023 (11:47 am)

      parking minimums are junk science. most parking lots spend the vast majority of their time vastly under utilized.

  • Traveling sans car September 18, 2023 (5:22 pm)

    These comments about a hotel without parking…..for major cities, that is not unusual. I can’t recall the last time I stayed at a hotel and also rented a car when visiting Chicago, NY, DC, LA, San Fran, Austin, Portland, etc. with public transport and lyft/uber and taxis, a car free vacation can be glorious. I also bet most of this se rooms would be filled by visitors who are visiting people who don’t have a guest room. When I lived at Mural when it first opened, they had a guest apt that residents could rent. None of my family visiting rented a car bc I had one, if we wanted to go anywhere that “required” one. I am thrilled to have more options than the Grove and airbnbs which often require 2-3 nites. Wish it was available this summer when my family visited from Saipan! 

  • John September 18, 2023 (5:23 pm)

    I recently stayed at the Doubletree Hotel in Modesto, California, a 12 story hotel in the heart of the city. It has NO parking. However, they contract for reduced rates at the city owned parking garage across the street. Worked out fine. 

  • Rosey September 18, 2023 (5:37 pm)

    While I welcome a junction hotel and it would ultimately be good for businesses…this one I am struggling to see how it succeeds as a hybrid hotel/apartment unless they market their apartments and lease options as a longer than typical extended stay. If anything at this point I have to assume the live-in units are going to be outrageously expensive if it provides access to hotel staff for upkeep and amenities. Consider me skeptical, but all the best if it is approved I suppose.

    • CAM September 18, 2023 (7:29 pm)

      Why would the apartments have access to hotel amenities/housekeeping/staff?

    • Sue H September 19, 2023 (12:35 am)

      I doubt very much that the apartments would have any access to hotel staff or amenities. Usually when they combine them like this the apartments have a separate entrance and it’s an entirely different business that just happens to share the same building.

  • Sam September 18, 2023 (7:17 pm)

    Yes, great project, love it. One note -I would like to see the “rooms” replaced with parking. Just parking. We could even tear down some of the adjacent buildings and build even more parking. It’s crazy that greedy developers can’t understand that each resident requires 83 parking spots MINIMUM before we can even consider letting more people visit our sacred isle.

  • CAM September 18, 2023 (7:37 pm)

    I have rented a car when traveling exactly 1 time in the last 15 years and that was a result of how COVID was impacting local transportation options at the destination. That includes family trips with young kids. The most recent time I was in a hotel parking garage it was about 60% empty. If your travel experiences suggest to you that a person always needs parking when staying overnight somewhere, you may not be representative of how the majority of the population travels. 

  • Tracey September 18, 2023 (7:42 pm)

    My neighborhood has become a hotel district with all the Air Bnbs.  None of my neighbors have parking for their guests.   Why should hotels be held to different standards? Those AirBnbs could be long term rentals for people actually trying to live in Seattle.  They need some competition in my opinion.  I had to stay at the Grove for an extended period during a kitchen disaster.  They are awesome. 

  • C September 18, 2023 (7:50 pm)

    People renting apartments are more likely to have cars and a need for reserved parking than hotel guests.

  • 2cents September 18, 2023 (8:39 pm)

    45 hotel units – I’m amazed they didnt go hybrid apartments/ storage units – this is West Seattle.

  • Sheila G September 18, 2023 (9:07 pm)

    I love this idea! We live just a couple of blocks away and would definitely consider using this hotel for out of town guests, since our place is quite small.

  • WSDUDEMAN September 18, 2023 (9:36 pm)

    Some people actually drive to visit other cities. They don’t always fly in and take an $80 Uber from SeaTac. Having a few parking spots wouldn’t have been insane.

    • YT September 19, 2023 (11:25 am)

      Surely those that do drive a car could be accommodated by some of the other hundreds of hotels and Air B&Bs in the area, including The Grove in west Seattle, which has plenty of parking.

    • NoBusForYou September 19, 2023 (11:53 am)

      it’s literally $3 to get to WS from SeaTac with the bus with no effort. if they think Uber is the only option, that’s on them. just think of it as a privileged tax 😊

  • KBear September 18, 2023 (9:40 pm)

    With 1.5 hotels and rapid transit on the way in mere decades, West Seattle is poised to become a major travel destination or something. Also, I wonder how many of those complaining about the lack of parking have a garage full of junk and two cars parked on the street?

  • Traffic September 18, 2023 (9:44 pm)

    What is going to be an issue if not designed, in addition to no parking for the apartment half, is no space for drop offs. 42nd in that spot is already narrow enough that passing another car is just barely possible. School drop offs and morning pick ups at the same time are going to make that block impassable and back up traffic onto Oregon.

  • J September 18, 2023 (10:02 pm)

    I just wish it weren’t so ugly!

  • WS Neighbor September 18, 2023 (11:27 pm)

    No parking and the local business going in will likely continue to draw a lot of traffic on open days. Nowhere for patrons who have proven to drive to the existing business to park?  Yikes.

    • M September 19, 2023 (6:56 am)

      You’re looking at that in a void. There’s going to be dozens of new residents and dozens more visitors who can access those businesses walking or rolling. Losing (or in this case, no expansion of) parking doesn’t mean losing business overall. 

    • foop September 19, 2023 (8:08 am)

      There’s plenty of parking. Or people can learn to use the bus.

  • Sue H September 19, 2023 (12:31 am)

    I am more concerned about 45 more apartments with no parking than I am about hotels without parking.

  • SSS September 19, 2023 (4:35 am)

    Is it zoned for a hotel? I’m surprised it hasn’t happened yet, if the zoning allows for it.  No parking is ridiculous. I get it if you fly in you’re less likely to need a car but my family drives into town because it’s more affordable than flying. So I think some parking should be required. My family has stayed at The Grove several times and it’s fine. 

    • YT September 19, 2023 (11:35 am)

      If the Grove is fine, then what’s the issue.  There are hundreds of other hotels and thousands of Air B&Bs in the area that can accommodate people with cars.

  • Javier September 19, 2023 (5:44 am)

    The Junction is a walkable urban neighborhood close to downtown. Public transportation is frequent and reliable and will be even better once Link opens. The last thing many people want to deal with when traveling for recreation or business is renting a car. Some of these WS blog comments are so out of touch. The developers aren’t stupid. Parking is not a dealbreaker!

  • Ban cars September 19, 2023 (5:51 am)

    Y’all realize that the reason the junction is a desirable place is its walkability? If it was laid out like Westwood with a focus being on ease of use for drivers it would just be another strip mall. Should just permanently block off california through there and turn it into a plaza. 

  • K September 19, 2023 (6:46 am)

    People traveling with pets will stay at hotels that accommodate pets.  People with cars will stay at hotels that accommodate cars.  It’s not rocket science and I am really learning from these comment boards how many of my West Seattle neighbors never leave their houses ever.  Traveling without a car is a very normal thing people do all the time.

  • John September 19, 2023 (8:10 am)

    Another NIMBY ‘no parking rant’.  

    These are the ‘old guard’ neighborhood protectionists that have led us down the parking black hole (as well as our unaffordable housing crisis).
    The West Seattle Farmers Market which eliminates all parking in the heart of the Junction is wildly successful and an example of the way the future could evolve.  
    I appreciate all of the people, families on bicycles and pulling kids in  wagons and people walking with empty then returning bearing packed bags.  

  • HappyFella September 19, 2023 (11:55 am)

    I’m proud of all the folks in my community that are supporting this 😊 y’all are great. appreciate ya

  • Ryan September 19, 2023 (12:51 pm)

    who else here seeks out WSB stories about development just to read the comments about parking?? so funny. love em.

  • He's getting your car now September 19, 2023 (1:20 pm)

    Seems like a lot of commenters in this thread have never stayed at a east coast downtown hotel before: of course they’ll offer parking, leased from one of the other buildings in the neighborhood with a garage, and they’ll offer valet parking at their front door to those with cars.  I was once of those valets running back and forth fetching guest cars.

  • West Seattle Tourist September 19, 2023 (1:32 pm)

    There is absolutely no need for any more parking spaces in our beloved Junction.  The concrete jungle already sickens me enough on my weekend commute to the the Farmers Market via my Rad Power Bike. I often meditate on the ride imagining how it must have been 100+ years ago without all the “progress” we now are suffering from. Although I work from home Monday through Friday there is no reason my fellow neighbors cannot step up and ride public transportation.  I took the Water Taxi to dinner and a show in Downtown recently and was pleasantly surprised by the convenience and affordability.  It pains me to imagine the beautiful world we could cohabitate if our neighbors became more progressive like me. You can do it… please?!

  • Margaret October 8, 2023 (5:10 pm)

    Regarding Aegis- We will need parking for every single Aegis employee, plus for visitors and residents. Otherwise this facility will be a strain on people in the area.Aegis has the money to build parking. They are doing VERY well. Any idea what long term care costs out of pocket these days?This is next to the park our kids play soccer. There is already very little parking for neighbors in this area.

Sorry, comment time is over.