Seattle Immersive Theatre to close after one year on Queen Anne

Last January, we shared the news that Seattle Immersive Theatre was moving into the old Silver Platters location at the corner of Roy & 5th Ave N. The theatre signed a one-year lease, and as that lease expires, the troupe is moving on. Its three February performances – Storyville Rising, The Few Clothes Cabaret, and Mardi Gras Masquerade – will be the last on Queen Anne.

According to Seattle Immersive Theatre, the landlord of the building at 701 5th Ave N seeks to “more than double” the current lease amount. This particular site has been in the blog before, as it’s slated for demolition to make way for a new development. Design plans were revealed in October for the near-future 5-story building that will house 99 apartments and 3,481 square feet of commercial space on the ground floor:

Seattle Immersive Theatre may be losing their current home, but they plan to soldier on – here’s what they have to say about the future:

“Don’t despair- three years ago Seattle Immersive Theatre started as a nomadic theatre company and we’re embracing the change back to doing site-specific productions. Although we’ll be leaving our Queen Anne location, we certainly aren’t done doing our own brand of theatre magic.

Join us as we bid a bittersweet adieu to the space we’ve called home for the past year. The Masquerade Ball on February 25th will be our last event at this space and we plan to go out with a bang! After a respite from the transition, we’re on to the next adventure.”

You can buy tickets to Seattle Immersive Theatre’s last shows via their website.

Key Arena redevelopment: take the Uptown Alliance survey and attend a public meeting

If you have questions, concerns, opinions (or all three) on the redevelopment and/or possible replacement of Key Arena, the Seattle Uptown Alliance has two options for you.

First, take the Uptown Alliance’s survey on Key Arena plans. It’s a short 10 question survey with two key rating/ranking questions:

Potential community benefits: what you believe is most important, whether it’s community, transportation, or clean-up impacts.

Preferences for Key Arena: what you prefer for the future of Key Arena, from keeping the original structure as-is to completely demolishing it, and whether you want NBA/NHL teams playing at the Key.

The survey takes less than 3 minutes to complete, so take it today! Then, mark your calendars for a special community meeting to discuss the redevelopment of Key Arena and its surroundings. The meeting is scheduled for Monday, February 13th, at 7pm. The agenda is TBD, if you want updates on the meeting, RSVP here.

Land with Teatro ZinZanni sold to developer with plans for 16-story building

The land that runs along 3rd Ave N between Mercer and Roy Streets has been sold to a developer that plans to build two separate buildings on the site: one 8 story building and one 16 story building per the Seattle Department of Construction & Inspections.

The two buildings will 350 residential units and 9,744 sq. ft. of retail space. Below grade parking for 270 vehicles is currently included in the early design phase.

How 16 stories? This project is impacted by the Uptown Rezone, and the notice notes “project relies on contract rezone” in reference to the building height.

The first public meeting for this project is the Design Review Early Design Guidance Review meeting on April 5th:

Review Meeting
April 5, 2017 6:30 p.m.
Queen Anne Community Center
1901 1st Ave W, Room 1

In the meantime, Teatro ZinZanni is looking for a new home, which isn’t a small feat. You can read more about the impact on this local icon in this KOMO story. And, you can learn more about the history of the “K Block” from the Queen Anne Historical Society.

City opens up RFP for Key Arena renovation

As we reported back in July, the City of Seattle is seeking options for a renovation of Key Arena. At the time, the City stated it would open up a Request for Proposals (RFP) process in January. Fast forward to today, and RFPs are now being accepted.

Per the City:

“The City of Seattle is seeking proposals from parties interested in redeveloping and operating KeyArena at Seattle Center as a world-class civic arena presenting music, entertainment, and sports events, including the potential for NBA and NHL events. Responses are due to the Office of Economic Development by 5:00 p.m. Wednesday, April 12, 2017.”

A full FAQ on the process is available online. It covers the whys, the hows, the expected impacts, and timeframe. It also answers questions about potential NHL and NBA teams and the proposed SODO arena.

As for funding, the RFP ask proposers be responsible for 100% of the funding to complete the redevelopment, construction, and operation of Key Arena.

Two story addition to existing Queen Anne Ave building brings it to four stories

The mixed use building at 617 Queen Anne Ave N near the intersection of Roy St and Queen Anne Ave N is going to grow upwards with a two-story addition to the existing two-story building. Per the Land Use Application, the existing building will remain, minus two units.

The addition will add 30 units and bring it up to a four-story mixed use building with retail on the first floor and 52 apartments above. It’s still very early in the process, so no drawings are available and no public meetings are scheduled at this time.


Wag N’ Wash opens on Queen Anne this Spring

wag-n-wash-storefrontWhen I noticed the vacant spot in The Towne no longer sported a “For Lease” sign, I did some digging and found some answers. The large space at 1932 Queen Anne Ave N will soon be home to the first Wag N’ Wash in the state.

How did Wag N’ Wash makes its way up to Queen Anne? Queen Anne is home to many dogs, but old homes and apartments are often not kind to those of us who take on the challenge of bathing dogs at home. Enter Wag N’ Wash, which will have self-serve bathing stations in addition to all-natural pet treats.

wag-n-wash-logoLocal residents Bill and Andrew wanted to open a business in our community where they could serve both residents and their four-legged friends. They noted of the lack of a spot to take pups for self-serve or full-service professional groomer baths, and the shop allows them to work close to home.

Wag N’Wash will open in the Spring, with construction beginning next month. The owners are also leasing the adjacent space, so Wag N’ Wash will be even roomier. If all goes as planned with permits, expect the new shop to open in late March/early April.

wag-n-wash-bath-vThe shop will have 6 self-washing stations and 6 drying stations, serving up to 12 dogs at a time. The self-wash stations will be first-come, first-serve, and there will also be professional full service groomers available for reserved appointments.

The shop will also have an in-house bakery for roughly 20 varieties of fresh home made dog treats, in addition to all natural dog and cat food, accessories (e.g. leashes, collars, toys). And, because Wag N’ Wash will have its own bakery, that means they can also make doggie cakes for birthdays or holidays.

According to Bill, “We fell in love with our neighborhood and can often be seen walking our dogs along the streets chatting with neighbors and friends. We are looking forward to giving back to our community and will be partnering with local shelters and rescue groups for regular adoption events to be held at the store.”

Stay tuned for more information on a Grand Opening this Spring!

Alert: 3rd Ave W closed between W Dravus & W Florentia this weekend

screen-shot-2016-12-02-at-5-19-07-pmThis weekend, SDOT will be excavating and paving on 3rd Ave W between W Dravus St and W Florentia St. The joint SDOT & SPU work will take place between 7am and 7pm on Saturday, December 3rd, and Sunday, December 4th.

King County Metro Route 13 will not service 3rd Ave W this weekend, instead it will be rerouted to Queen Anne Ave N between W McGraw and W Nickerson St. Details on stops and the reroute are here.


Here’s what else to expect with this work:

  • 3rd Ave W closed to traffic in both directions between W Dravus St and W Florentia St
  • There will be no parking in the work zone
  • Detours will be in place
  • Flaggers and uniformed police officers will assist with traffic control
  • Travelers may enter and exit driveways on 3rd Ave W but may have to wait for equipment to clear.

Plan ahead for alternate routes to get up and down the north side of the hill this weekend.

Bank of America finally moves in at Galer & Queen Anne Ave N

bank-of-america-1216A little over a year ago, I wrote about how Bank of America was coming to Upper Queen Anne. The prime street-level corner spot at 1501 Queen Anne Ave N sat empty for months, then permits were issued for a Bank of America “Express Store” last November.

This week, a construction crew was installing ATMs in the foyer of the building, and signs were hung with the Bank of America moniker. It’s been over a year, but my research proved true – we are getting a new bank on Upper Queen Anne.

Bank of America joins a slew of banks along Queen Anne Ave N, including Chase directly across the street, Wells Fargo, Umpqua, Homestreet Bank, Union Bank, Umpqua, and Key Bank. All of these banks are on a less than half-a-mile stretch on Queen Anne Ave N.

4 Queen Anne stairways are on the list for SDOT improvements

I divvy up Queen Anne for my daily walks (you can check out views from my Queen Anne walks via Instagram), and yesterday’s walk took me to views of Lake Union then up the Howe St stairs to Bigelow and the Crown of Queen Anne.


The neglected Howe Stairway

The old Howe stairway is one I use regularly for this route, and I always dread running into someone else on it. Why? There is only enough room for one person (or, in my case, me and my dog), one side is completely unprotected by a handrail, and the handrail on the other side is partially made of  rotting wood. Plus, it’s a steep set of stairs with blackberry vines and overgrowth on both sides (and often on the stairs as well).

It’s definitely a neglected stairway, and one that people likely use to get down to Galer to catch the bus or up from Galer on their way home. But, when I got to the foot of the stairway yesterday, there was an info box with flyers from SDOT announcing that this particular stairway has been chosen for improvements in 2017.

In addition to the treacherous Howe stairway, there are 3 other Queen Anne stairways on SDOT’s list for improvements, here’s the full list – click on the hyperlinks to see exactly where these stairways are, and note that Queen Anne is receiving extra attention this go around, per the map:

screen-shot-2016-11-30-at-8-39-24-amHowe Street between 5th Ave N & Bigelow Ave N

Aurora Bridge between Aurora Ave N & Raye St

Wheeler St between Gilman & 13th Ave W

Wheeler St between 12th Ave W & 13th Ave W

As part of the improvements process, SDOT has a survey to poll residents on the improvements that are most valued for each of these stairways.

If you have comments on all four Queen Anne stairways, you’ll need to take the survey four times, once for each stairway. But, it’s a quick survey and important! If you’d like to see better handrails, wider stairs, increased lighting, benches, or more, take the survey today.

The survey closes December 30th, and work begins on the stairways next year. Get your input in so our Queen Anne stairways get the attention they need!

6 story efficiency apartment building planned for Aurora Ave N

1945-aurora-ave-n-mapAnother efficiency apartment building is on its way – this time a 6-story building at 1945 Aurora Ave N, next to the Aloha Inn. Unlike the multi-story efficiency buildings in Uptown, this one has parking. The difference? Uptown construction is located in the Uptown Urban Center, and per Seattle Municipal Code 23.54.015, parking is not required.

The new 6-story building will house 37 “small efficiency dwelling units” with underground parking for 17 vehicles. Here’s an aerial view with a massing drawing of the proposed building (it’s the drawn building to the right):