Thanks to a reader tip, CHS has learned of a multi-million dollar bidding process for yet another chunk of the Capitol Hill auto row past and a property we once feared would sit empty “for a long time.”
The former Complete Automotive building, the 19,000 square-foot 1920 showroom and auto garage that has stood empty at Broadway and Union as a back-up property for the Polyclinic, was awarded to the highest bidder in a fall 2012 sale process.
Capitol Hill Development Opportunity - 1158 Broadway We are marketing a 16,424SF development site on behalf of The Polyclinic.
Thanks to the reader tip, we confirmed this week that the property is, indeed, under contract and on the move toward development. The winning bidder has not yet been disclosed. If you’re looking for the latest “comps,” developer Hunters Capital has set the rather exclusive market for Capitol Hill auto-row acquisitions lately with deals to buy these two buildings on E Pike and this building on E Pine — let’s just call it somewhere between $250 and $300 per square foot depending on the potential of the parcel.
The 16,000 square feet of land at the intersection of Union and Broadway has been home to the one-story brick building for more than 90 years but has stood empty for the start of this decade as the Polyclinic continued to hold the property. In November 2010, CHS reported that the medical services company would likely hold onto the building and land even as its plans for a new building at 7th and Madison on First Hill moved forward.
The Polyclinic acquired the Complete Automotive building for $6.25 million in 2008 as a potential location to build an expanded facility in the area but those plans became a hedge as zoning changes at City Hall made development of large medical services facilities on First Hill even more rewarding. Last May, the Polyclinic opened its new 7th at Madison tower on First Hill. Changes rippled through the Polyclinic facilities in the area — including this two-block move of 180 employees from E Pike — as offices and clinic spaces were consolidated.
The same day City Council approved the legislation opening First Hill to massive medical development projects, it also approved the base of the Pike/Pike Conservation Overlay incentives that will likely be part of the Complete Automotive building’s future. Just up E Union, a 250-unit project that will incorporate two “character” structures finally received approval of its design and is moving toward construction. Meanwhile, across the street, a six-story, 79-unit building — most notable, thus far, for rumors of one of its potential commercial tenants — is moving into final construction phases.
In the past, the Polyclinic was considering a five-story medical building with significant underground parking for its corner of Broadway and Union. It is likely whatever new plans are eventually filed by the new owner will shoot higher to seven stories — but will also preserve a few elements of this piece of Capitol Hill’s past. Now we just need a plan for the Polyclinic’s stairway to nowhere across the street at Broadway and Harvard.