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Seattle Waterfront

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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.

 

AquariumDid you know there was such a thing as a master pumpkin carver? Well, there is, and the Seattle Aquarium has enlisted master carver Russ Leno to put his stamp on giant pumpkins as part of its ‘Halloween at the Aquarium’ event on October 25 and 26.

The aquarium will be hosting activities all day, including an underwater pumpkin-carving demonstration by aquarium divers, ominous octopus feeding, a mad scientist salmon dissection, and of course watching the always crowd-pleasing river otters. Make sure your little ones have their costumes ready, as the festivities will be capped off with trick-or-treating at waterfront businesses on Sunday evening.

The aquarium opens at 9:30 a.m., so you’ll have time to get in a quick visit to all your favorite creatures before the Halloween fun begins at 10:30. See here for a full schedule of activities!

In Seattle, we’re proud of our neighborhoods. In fact, we might sometimes identify more strongly with our neighborhood than with Seattle as a whole (calling all native Ballardites!) If you haven’t been downtown in a while, you may have forgotten that what we think of as downtown actually comprises several unique neighborhoods. At it’s annual meeting on Wednesday, June 4, the Downtown Seattle Association will review what’s been happening over the past year in the Metropolitan Improvement District neighborhoods of Belltown, West Edge, Waterfront, Pioneer Square, and the Retail Core.

There will be an update on progress of DSA’s 5-year strategic plan, which was introduced in 2011 and outlined five transformative projects for the downtown area: revitalization of the waterfront; the Pike-Pine Corridor Renaissance Project; revitalization of the South Downtown neighborhoods of Pioneer Square and Chinatown-International District; increasing employment and residential density, livability and connections to downtown in South Lake Union; and long-term revitalization of Seattle Center. More info on the strategic plan can be found here.

The Association will also give out its 2014 Downtown Champion award, which is given to an individual, company or organization that has made a significant impact in furthering the DSA’s mission. In previous years the award has been given to developer Matt Griffin, Tom Douglas, Seattle Art Museum and FareStart.

Tickets for the event, taking place the the 5th Avenue Theater, are $55 for DSA members and MID ratepayers, and $75 for non-members, and can be found here. Check in begins at 3:30 p.m. and the event runs from 4:00-6:30 p.m.

 

 

 

 

This evening, Seattle Parks and Recreation will discuss and gather public opinion on a proposal for a public art piece addition to Myrtle Edwards Park. The art piece would be used for skateboarding. The public meeting is to be held at the Belltown Community Center tonight (May 29th) at 7 p.m.

Red Bull approached Seattle Parks about commissioning the design and construction of a piece of art that would be used for skateboarding. At tonight’s meeting, the history of the project will be shared, as well as opening time for a public discussion.

“Red Bull is investing in the Seattle community by creating a truly unique public art experience that explores the creative nexus of public space, athletic skill and individual imagination,” says the call for artists to work on the project.

This proposal for a community investment from Red Bull is not the first time skate parks have been suggested for Myrtle Edwards Park, which is located in the Belltown neighborhood at 3130 Alaskan Way. A Citywide Skatepark Plan was developed in 2006 and 2007 recommended the Belltown park as a site for a skate park. Since that plan was issued in 2007, eight new skate parks and skatedots have been constructed throughout the city, with two more in the construction and design phases.

Seattle Parks and 4Culture are looking for artists to collaborate with experts to design the skateable art piece for Myrtle Edwards Park. “This is not a skate park – it is first and foremost a work of art. But this is art that invites interaction and participation.”

Join the public discussion tonight to give your input on the public art piece and share your opinion on this unique community project.

When: Wednesday, May 29th at 7 p.m.
Where: Belltown Community Center, 415 Bell Street, Seattle 98121
Cost: Free and open to the public

Featured photo from SDOTblog.Seattle.gov.

The parking lot on the corner of 1st Avenue and Vine street is getting developed into apartments! As reported Tuesday by the Daily Journal of Commerce, the Schuster Group is purchasing the property with the intent to develop it for a 12-story building that will contain 132 apartments.

Keeping with the style of the greenway on Vine Street, the Schuster Group plans to include a plaza on the corner of Western, as well as winding sidewalks toward the waterfront. An upper patio will provide excellent views of Elliott Bay.

To be located at 2521 Western Ave., the new apartment building will be called the Walton Lofts, and look to be a great addition to our Belltown real estate!

Featured concept photo credit to The Schuster Group