Thanks to the neighborhood’s deep love for the restaurant — and the dedicated ongoing documentation of “changing” Seattle by Vanishing Seattle — CHS’s inbox lit up this week with concern.
Did you know Annapurna’s building is going to be torn down?
CHS reported on the impending doom for the 1905-built Capitol Crest building back in 2016. The project to create a new development with a mix of 50 apartment units above 3,500 square feet of space for a store or a restaurant on the property even started the design review process back in 2017 but has been on pause since. With a bustling light rail facility across the street, the trade of 14 apartments and business space for a denser development is probably a good one.
Annapurna and its neighbors, meanwhile, have soldiered on. In summer of 2015, Owner Sujan Sharma and Roshita Shrestha celebrated their Yeti Bar expansion after surviving years of nearby light rail construction and fully aware of the plans for their block that have been in motion since 2013, according to city permits. Annapurna has even added a neighbor along the way with Albacha braving the impending demolition to open in late 2017.
Earlier this year, as permit deadlines approached for the 1800-block Broadway project, paperwork on the development kicked back into motion, and this sign went up at Annapurna asking for help finding the restaurant a new Capitol Hill location:
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The building on #Broadway & East Denny, which houses the much-loved Himalayan/Nepali/Tibetan/Indian restaurant Annapurna Cafe & Yeti bar (saffron-infused cocktails!), Ace Barbershop, Albacha Restaurant, & the bay-window apartments above, is proposed for #demolition & #development. #AnnapurnaCafe doesn’t know how much longer they have in this space, but they are seeking a new location nearby (hit em up at firstname.lastname@example.org as there’s a typo in the pic if you have a lead) & will move as soon as they are able. The building was constructed in 1905 & purchased by Champion Development Inc for $1.99 million in 1997. It’s now in a prime real estate location – right next to the #CapitolHill #lightrail station – and so it’s proposed to be redeveloped into a 6-story apartment building with restaurant, office & retail. #Annapurna has been a staple especially for the Capitol Hill & local vegetarian & vegan community for decades, loved for their incredible food & colorful, beautifully decorated subterranean interior. It was opened by Roshita Shrestha, who came to #Seattle after years of experience cooking food of her native Nepal (including #Newari cuisine) plus years traveling & learning the foods of India and Tibet. A customer had heard that Annapurna had an agreement with the developer to find a temporary home during construction & then move back into the new building…not sure if that is still panning out? In the meantime, go support @annapurnacafeseattle & the other small biz there! Thx to & pic by @what_shalyn_sees #Project3016632 #noticeofproposedlanduseaction #redevelopment #transitorienteddevelopment #yetibar #gentrification #displacement #regionofboom #oldseattle #oldcapitolhill #supportimmigrantowned #NepaliSeattle #immigrantseattle #seattlecommunity#seattleculture #seattlecharacter #seattlesoul #vanishingseattle #vivaseattle
We’ve reached out to Annapurna to ask more about how much time they have and how people can help. UPDATE: Ownership tells CHS, yes, they are looking but that getting information from the landlord about the timeline for the project has been difficult. CHS also reached out to the Office of Economic Development which says it will be in touch with the restaurant.
The good news is, redevelopment and, likely, demolition is still a long way off. According to city permit information, the building must be assessed as a possible historic landmark and that process is being lined up to begin with the Department of Neighborhoods this fall. In the wake of that decision, the project also must complete its design review process. The development hurdles could push the project out a year or more.
So, once again, you have time to enjoy a Capitol Hill favorite. And, hopefully, Annapurna and its Yeti Bar — and its neighbors and the neighbors living above — have time to find a new Capitol Hill home.
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