Mixed-use development on Capitol Hill is so hot, even the Seattle Police Department is getting in on the game. In a plan years in the making, the City of Seattle and Capitol Hill Housing will Wednesday afternoon announce a partnership that will transform the East Precinct parking lot on 12th Ave near E Pine into a mixed-use development with more than 80 units of housing, community meeting space, retail, arts space, and underground parking for SPD.
We first reported on the 12th Ave Arts version of the plan back in January but efforts to re-make the space had started — and stopped — repeatedly over the past decade. We first reported on CHH’s push for the project in 2008.
One major sticking point had been the parking infrastructure and concerns over the cost and the number of spaces the project would need to provide. The East Precinct currently parks 70 cars on the 12th Ave lot and another 30 on a private lot at 14th and Pine, according to Norma Jean Straw of the Capitol Hill Community Council who has helped represent the Hill in the push to make the 12th Ave project happen. According to Straw, the project has been delayed for two years due to debate over the number of parking spaces that are financially feasible in the development. SPD has said it will need around 150 spaces in any development. We have questions out to the department and the City for more information on how this issue worked out.
More details on the project will be announced at a Wednesday afternoon press conference scheduled to take place at the East Precinct parking lot at 1:30 PM. The goal had been to achieve the development without City funds. Mayor Mike McGinn — who reportedly first agreed to meet on the project during a Capitol Hill walking tour last year — will speak as will Capitol Hill Housing head Chris Persons.