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June 9, 2014

REO Flats opens; 30% leased

Photos courtesy of Christophe Servieres [enlarge]

Capitol Hill's newest upscale apartment building has opened and 30 percent of the units are leased.

REO Flats is a seven-story, 108-unit “luxury” apartment building at 1515 14th Ave., developed by Madrona Real Estate Services of Seattle and Glenmont Capital Management of New York. It has 7,200 square feet of retail and 79 parking spaces.

Rents range from $900 to $3,300 a month.

The project is participating in the city's Multifamily Tax Exemption program, which requires developers to set aside 20 percent of the units for people making between 65 percent and 85 percent of area median income. In exchange, the developer gets a property tax exemption for up to 12 years.

REO Flats includes the facade of a 1925 structure that was on the site, and the entry is lined with brick salvaged from the Supply Laundry Building in South Lake Union.

The ground floor has 20-foot high storefronts with rug-finished brick.

REO Flats is named for Ransom E. Olds, who was a pioneer in the American auto industry. The Oldsmobile brand was named after him, and the car company once operated on Capitol Hill's historic auto row.

A 32-by-42-foot mural on the south side of the building depicts the REO Speed Wagon, considered to be “the ancestor” of the pickup truck. Madrona tapped Foley Sign Co., an 85-year-old Seattle business, to do the mural based on a 1930s' advertisement.

Johnson Architecture & Planning is the architect and Compass General Construction is the general contractor. Two9Design is the interior architect and Washington Trust Bank is the construction lender.

Greek restaurateur Thomas Soukakos, who did El Greco, Vios Cafe and Marketplace on Capitol Hill and Ravenna, will open Omega Ouzeri on the ground floor of REO Flats later this year. Omega Ouzeri will offer small plates as well as traditional Greek recipes.

Other retail tenants are Blue Sky Cleaners and Porchlight Coffee & Records.

REO Flats was the first project to get started after the city approved new incentives in the Pike-Pine corridor for integrating old structures into new buildings.