Practice: Architecture, urban design, interior design
Investors, developers and sellers are hesitant and out of sync in the slumping regional economy, according to principal Tom Frye, Jr. of Baylis Architects in Bellevue.
As a result, the number and size of projects have declined over the past two years, he said. The staff had been up to 38, but through slow attrition, the number has stabilized at 22 for more than a year. Total construction value is down and seems to be running at about $100 million.
Baylis continues to work primarily in single-family houses, high-density and low-density multi-family housing, specialty retail, and corporate office projects.
“Though there are many, many investors in the process of getting out of the stock market and wanting to invest in real estate, they are as yet unwilling to pay for what they perceive as above-market asking prices for land or projects,” said Frye. “At the same time, sellers do not yet feel sufficient pressure to make deals at below market rates. For the multi-family and commercial markets to pick up, the Northwest needs increasing employment. When that happens, apartments and office space will be rented again, and as a result, new ‘product’ will be needed.”
Also as a result of the slow economy, several projects, including four multi-story mixed-use buildings, are on hold. They are in Kirkland, on Main Street in Old Bellevue, in the University District and in downtown Bellevue.
Recently completed projects include the Kessel Office Building in Kirkland, a heavy timber structure designed as a corporate headquarters for two software companies( October DJC project of the Month); the Palazzo II condominiums, a mixed-use project in Bellevue; 90 Central Way extended stay and mixed-use in Kirkland; and Westpointe Condominiums, Des Moines.
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