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June 13, 2014

Lewis starts work on its new HQ

Photo by Lara Swimmer [enlarge]
The project includes seismic upgrades, masonry restoration and new mechanical/electrical systems.

Lease Crutcher Lewis got permits this week to renovate the historic Union Stables at 2200 Western Ave. for its new headquarters.

Last year Lewis paid $2.35 million for half of the 63,768-square-foot building owned by Allegra Properties, which is run by the Moscatel family. Lewis will occupy the fourth floor and add a penthouse on top for its offices as part of the overall renovation.

The project includes seismic upgrades, masonry restoration and new mechanical/electrical systems. Under a demolition permit, work began in early May to remove the freight elevator, sawcut the concrete foundation slab and excavate for new footings to carry steel cross-braced towers for the seismic upgrade.

“It's exciting to get started,” said Dave Rauma, Lewis' senior project manager for the headquarters, in a release. “We've learned a lot about being on the owner side of a project, in particular dealing with land-use permitting and landmark preservation. Now that we're under construction, we're focusing on schedule and quality, including sensitivity to the historic building.”

Work is expected to be substantially complete by February 2015. Lewis will move in a month later.

Weinstein A|U, the project architect, and a software development firm called HasOffers have signed up to take some of the office space. There also will be 10,700 square feet of retail on the ground floor.

Lewis and Allegra are jointly developing the building, which is on the National Register of Historic Places. Bola Architecture is lead consultant for the historic designation.

The Miller Hull Partnership is designing the interiors for Lewis. Coughlin Porter Lundeen is the structural engineer and Pat Foley of Lake Union Partners is assisting Allegra with project management.

The project recently received preliminary approval for federal historic preservation tax credits. As part of this process, Bola and the team worked with the National Park Service to retain the doorways on Western Avenue and slightly reduce the penthouse level's profile.

The city's Landmarks Protection Board also approved the project in early May.

“We have always envisioned the renovation and historic preservation of this building and we have waited a long time to do so,” said Neiso Moscatel, president of Allegra Properties, in the release. “The timing is right with the redevelopment of the Seattle waterfront and the commitment of a business partner that shares our values.”

The building was constructed in 1910 to house 300 horses that pulled streetcars and fire engines. In 1942, it was remodeled for Graham Furniture Co. and last used by Continental Furniture.

The Moscatel family bought it in 1974.

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