Business News


We’ve all heard the joke about Seattle seasons, there is: almost winter, winter, still raining (spring) and construction (summer), and for good reason! If you’ve taken a look or even a walk around downtown Seattle, you can’t miss the infestation of cranes and construction sites – there is one on just about every block.

In June, the Downtown Seattle Association (DSA) released the 2015 Mid-Year Development Guide, which is an online resource examining development activity in Downtown Seattle. The development guide is published bi-annually, the Seattle one being published in February which reports for the prior year, and one is published in June which is a mid-year summary.

The June 2015 Mid-Year Development Guide Reported (via Downtown Seattle):

-Downtown Seattle has 106 projects currently under construction, about to begin construction, or have been completed since January 2014. This is more projects than 2005 when tracking development began.

– Currently residential projects outnumber commercial projects, however those are making a huge climb in numbers, four times as much.

–  There are three times as much apartment units and almost twice as many total residential units under construction in comparison to Seattle’s last development cycle in 2007.

– The average cost of each project is at the highest it’s been in the past decade with currently $4 billion in 48 projects.

Screen Shot 2013-08-06 at 5.27.02 PMThat high cost of each project is a reflection of the projects themselves. Seattle is seeing very sizable projects such as, The Mark, which will be the fifth largest building in Seattle standing at 660-foot tower, the Insignia Tower is the largest condominium development, and Amazon’s two new developments: the Troy Block of which is 800,000 sf along with an additional four block development which will offer the company another four million square feet.

Obviously, there is a domino effect happening here – the fact that Seattle’s job market is cooking, developers have identified companies like Amazon, Facebook, Expedia and others need office space and their employees need living quarters. If you build it, they will come.


Kirkland’s miniature golf themed Flatstick Pub is officially expanding to Pioneer Square and plans to welcome guests in early 2016. The nine-hole miniature golf course and tap house has found a home below Second and Main and will join the location’s current residents Good Bar, Pizzeria Gabiano and the Elm Coffee Roasters.


The games and all-Washington pouring taps are corner stones of the Kirkland location and are promised to carry over to the sister space. Though the space is slated to serve beer and wine only, they still boast their extensive all-Washington beer and cider flowing from 24 taps in the new location.

The subterranean location itself has a fascinating history and was formerly the home to Snoqualmie Falls Power Company and spent 27 years as the original Comedy Underground. The renovation and the preservation of the Furuya and the Corgiat buildings which reside above the space has been an intensive project over the past few years and has yielded a great space.


The nation’s largest business-to-business conference, networking event and trade show lands in Seattle next week. The Small Business Expo is a free, annual one-day event on Thursday, July 16th at Washington State Convention Center. More than 50,000 entrepreneurs and small business professionals come together during this jam-packed day to develop business leads and new customers, network with peers, discover new innovative services and products, and gain valuable industry information.

“We’ve made it our mission to help small business owners and entrepreneurs like you achieve their business dreams.” – Small Business Expo

Attendees will have the chance to listen to presentations by top industry experts, shop new products from vendors, attend workshops, and network with like-minded individuals. The Seattle Small Business Expo opens at 9:30 am with events until 6:00pm. Click here for a complete 2015 show guide.

According to public records, Beacon Capital Partners just paid more than $13.1 million for a full block of prime Seattle waterfront property. The early-20th century Maritime building sits 5-stories high at 911 Western Ave..  Seattle’s plans of building a $1 billion waterfront promenade once the Alaskan Way Viaduct is removed, has caught the attention of many real estate companies looking to cash in on the venture. After the removal of the viaduct, this building will be sitting pretty with a wonderful waterfront view.

Beacon, one of the most active real estate investment companies, says the Puget Sound Business Journal, currently owns Seattle’s tallest office building, the Columbia Center. Recently Beacon placed the 76-story, $725 million building on the market and are talks to sell to Hong Kong-based investors, Gaw Capital Partners. Purchased by Beacon in 2007 for $621 million, the towers initial occupancy rate fell to a painful 60 percent, which is now up to a promising 91 percent leased.

In picking up the waterfront Maritime building on Western, Beacon has the option, per zoning rules, to build a 160-foot-tall mixed commercial building, but the company hasn’t shared what their plans are for the space. Nonetheless, with all the promise of the planned Seattle waterfront face lift, it seems like this may be a prime investment piece.


Out with the old, in with the new seems to be Seattle’s motto these days. The city’s oldest Mexican restaurant, Mama’s Mexican Kitchen, has recently sold its soul to a development firm that will replace the Belltown gem with an eight story mixed-use building. It will stay open until September at the earliest, so there’s still some time to enjoy all of Mama’s goodness.

Mama’s Mexican Kitchen has been a Seattle favorite for 41 years, since it opened at 2nd and Bell in 1974. The funky spot is known for its dive bar atmosphere, affordable Mexi-American food, and over-the-top Elvis room. According to The Seattle Times, Mama’s owner sold the property to Minglian Realty for about $4.5 million in March.

Seattle is sad, to say the least:

 Featured photo via Nightefx