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August 31, 2016
The intersection of 23rd Avenue and East Union Street is headed toward an upzone, and that has helped make it a mecca for mixed-use development.
Lake Union Partners has three projects either completed, under construction or about to start soon, totaling about 115 apartments. They are The Stencil, The Central and East Union.
(Editor's note: This story has been changed to update the total number of apartments.)
Lennar's planned full-block development called MidTown Center will add about 400 units.
Most if not all of the units in those projects will be market-rate, which is why the Liberty Bank Building is notable.
Capitol Hill Housing is planning the project at 2320 E. Union St., named for the black-owned bank that occupied the site from 1968-88. (KeyBank later inherited the bank, then sold the roughly 22,000-square-foot property to CHH last year.)
With a projected budget of $30 million, the six-story structure will have 115 apartments — with rents set on a sliding-scale as a percentage of area median income. There will be 2,695 square feet of commercial space, and parking will accommodate bikes and 18 vehicles.
(Editor's note: This story has been changed to update the square feet of commercial space.)
Like the East Union and MidTown Center projects, CHH is applying for a contract rezone for buildings up to 65 feet in height. As CHH's Michael Seiwerath explained in a recent interview, the applications are being made in anticipation of an area rezone that the city is currently considering for the 23rd and Union corridor. All three projects are expected to conform to the new rules.
Mithun will design the Liberty Bank Building, incorporating some historic elements from the old bank. Walsh Construction will build it. CHH is aiming for a high-level LEED certification. Funding sources include the Seattle Housing Levy and Washington State Housing Trust Fund.
CHH expects to break ground in April of next year and finish by the summer of 2018. The team also includes the Africatown-Central District Preservation and Development Association, The Black Community Impact Alliance and Centerstone.
CHH is also starting to work on developing about 90 units in the “B-North” project atop the Capitol Hill light-rail station, part of Gerding Edlen's larger mixed-use development, expected to begin in 2018.
Measured by units, the Liberty Bank Building will be the largest project to date for the 40-year-old nonprofit. CHH currently has 48 buildings in its portfolio, housing over 2,000 people.
Brian Miller can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (206) 219-6517.