South Lake Union has been the talk of the town ever since the announcement of Paul Allen’s plan to develop the 60 acres of land he owns. Is South Lake Union going to be the next Belltown or something bigger than that? With the current construction of the gateway project, 2200 Westlake, Pan Pacific Hotel and condominium, it has created quite a stir in the market when 95 percent of the 261 condominium homes sold within the first month of opening to the public. The excitement is building and some home buyers couldn’t wait to see what else is in store for this neighborhood.
I decided to make a trip to their sales center to get an update on their latest development. The sale center is definitely the most impressive one that I have ever seen. I was greeted by the friendly sale representative and ushered into a mini theater to watch a 5 min presentation on Vulcan’s plan for South Lake Union. The video presentation was really informative and gives you a very good idea of Paul Allen’s vision for South Lake Union over the next 10-20 years.
Vulcan latest projects are Enso, The Martin, Veer Loft and Rollin St which will start construction this year.
This is going to be a 450,000-square-foot, mixed-use development with residential unit occupying from 6 to 18 story in the south tower. It is going to be right across 2200 Westlake on 9th and Denny Way. Vulcan is designing the development as a high performance "green" building and it will feature more natural daylight than traditional buildings, energy and water saving fixtures and the use of environmentally sensitive building materials. It will also feature a garden terrace, an exercise facility and an entry atrium.
This project is targeting at first time home buyer. It will include 94 homes featuring a mix of mezzanine and full height lofts. Veer Loft is geared towards Manhattan loft style with exposed beam ceiling, concrete floor and open layout.
Right behind the Cinerama will be the location for The Martin. This 24 story development will include 170 condominium unit and 4,000 square feet of retail space.Homes feature open and efficient floor plans with gas fireplace and expansive windows. Multi-level roof deck terrace with outdoor kitchen, grilling area and outdoor fire place. This project will appeal to yuppies who work in the downtown area. There is possibly a dog walk area for this condo. It is about time for developer to start including pet friendly amenities in their project.
Rollin St is going to be a 11 story project which will feature 208 Soho style lofts and 25,000 square feet of retail space. This 414,000 square feet development will be located at the northeast corner of Westlake Ave North and Denny Way. This eco-friendly project will start construction in fall 2006. Rollin St homes will include features like high ceilings and large open spaces that can be sectioned off with stylish room dividers and sliding doors. Walls of floor-to-ceiling windows, gourmet kitchens, hardwood floors, roomy decks and fireplaces. Environmentally conscious buyer will like this project.
Vulcan is planning another 10-15 new projects for the next few years. If demand continues, they will start their third round of project.
This is no doubt Seattle's largest neighborhood development.
With all this new construction going on, the City of Seattle is working on an integrated transportation plan for South Lake Union. A two-way Mercer Boulevard and a narrowed Valley Street will be designed to reconnect Capitol Hill and South Lake Union to Queen Anne/Uptown and downtown Seattle.
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