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Developer behind 23rd Ave church land buy and mixed-use project says ‘contending gentrification in Seattle’s Central District’

Jaebadiah Gardner

Gardner Global and its Onpoint real estate firm have announced more details of the 23rd Ave church property purchase and development plans CHS reported on earlier this month.

“We have an unbelievable opportunity to be creative in a way that gives back,” Jaebadiah Gardner, CEO of Gardner Global said in the company’s announcement of the project. “Our company slogan is #letsbuildwealth and this project is an example of how we are doing exactly that. Through this project. we’re providing non- traditional real estate investors an opportunity to be directly involved in the ownership.”

Gardner Global says the development will create a 64-unit “multifamily housing project” with a mix of market rate and affordable units and “intentional community space.” Onpoint brokerage office space will also open in the building “providing the community boutique real estate and property management services.”

The project will also “pay homage to the long standing African-American church and Central District Neighborhood” through its name, Gardner Global says, and “by including various artisan works throughout the building that blends both the history of African-American churches along with contemporary tech and sustainable design.”

CHS reported in early January on the $2.4 million purchase of Mount Calvary Christian Center’s properties across the street from its house of worship. The church land remains on the market for $4.5 million.

Last year, CHS reported on the church’s future in the Central District as Black congregations have increasingly been priced out of the city and many have chosen to sell their land holdings for new beginnings in more affordable areas of the region.


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14 thoughts on “Developer behind 23rd Ave church land buy and mixed-use project says ‘contending gentrification in Seattle’s Central District’

  1. “Black congregations have increasingly been priced out of the city and many have chosen to sell their land holdings for new beginnings in more affordable areas of the region.”

    I’m trying to understand how they were priced out since almost all owned their property. They weren’t renting.

    “Our company slogan is #letsbuildwealth…..”
    Weird how anti-capitalists thing $ is the solution to capitalism.

    • ““Our company slogan is #letsbuildwealth…..”
      Weird how anti-capitalists thing $ is the solution to capitalism.”

      Where did you get the idea that this design firm company CEO is “anti-capitalist?”

      • King County has a program which provides for significant property tax breaks for lower-income seniors and disabled people.

        I think it’s a myth to say that people are being “priced out” by rising property taxes. Perhaps a few are, but the majority are selling to take advantage of their increased property values.

      • Bob Knudson, people who can’t afford the taxes may not he low income or disabled. I’m “middle income” with no kids and can barely afford my property taxes. People did not exit homes their family owned for generations to cash out.

  2. This deal has plans to keep people of color in the community, not take them out. #letsbuildwealth within our own communities instead of giving it away. “64-unit “multifamily housing project” with a mix of market rate and affordable units and “intentional community space”” It’s sad when people take what they want from an article and try to demolish it. Look at the bigger picture here, keep black communities black owned by creating opportunities within those communities for other black folks. We need more of this.

  3. It’s nice to see more development pursue the same goals as the 23rd and Union and Liberty Bank projects, I just hope the NIMBY’s won’t slow this one down as much as some of the others in the area. The sooner we get more housing the better.

    • The sooner we get more *affordable* housing, the better. There is no shortage of empty units in Seattle. There’s a shortage of units people can afford.

      • That was my point. All the projects I listed include affordable housing.

        To your point, there are plenty of studies out there detailing the effects of adding housing at the varying levels of affordability, you might be surprised by what they show.

        An increase of availability at any level affects all other levels as well, and it’s a positive effect for those on the bottom.

        Besides, this country is by in large terrified of anything resembling socialism, so as much as I’d love to see a flood of non-profit construction, it’s just not going to happen.

  4. Bob Knudson, up until this last Legislative session, the programs you’re talking about had the same income requirements they had when they were created in the 1970s. They were not indexed for inflation. Many folks with small pension income plus Social Security did not qualify. Please do not ignore the lived experience of African American elders in the CD who were indeed priced out of their homes by property taxes. And thanks to King County Assessor John Wilson, whose continued hard work and advocacy on this issue was important in getting a fix in Olympia.

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