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Seattle’s ‘first affordable high rise in Seattle in more than 50 years’ set to break ground on First Hill

Bellwether Housing and Plymouth Housing Group’s First Hill development could end up the tallest affordable housing building Seattle has ever seen (Image: Weber Thompson)

Plymouth Housing says its First Hill project to create Seattle’s tallest affordable housing building is ready to break ground and announced a new project to create a housing development and home for 12th Ave’s St. Francis House as part of a successful $59.1 million fundraising campaign powered by “Seattle flagship corporations, foundations and nearly 700 individuals.”

Wednesday, the affordable housing developer said its PROOF Campaign will power the creation of 600 apartments for those experiencing homelessness by 2023.

“With the arrival of COVID-19, the world as we know it changed beneath our feet,” CEO Paul Lambros said. “However, the PROOF campaign has shown when we work together, we are in a stronger position to meet the needs of the most vulnerable in our community. We close the campaign with one project completed and five actively underway. Today, supporting our operations and ensuring the safety of Plymouth Housing residents and staff is our highest priority.”

Included in Plymouth’s plans is its collaboration with Bellwether Housing to create an affordable housing project on surplus Sound Transit land at Madison and Boylston. The project will be “the largest building constructed by any affordable housing provider in Seattle, with 12 to 15 floors of housing over a floor of retail, service, and community space” and will break ground in the coming weeks:

This fall, the first affordable high rise in Seattle in more than 50 years will break ground in First Hill. The Madison/Boylston project, which was made possible by a $0 land transfer from Sound Transit, is a joint development with Bellwether Housing and features 111 studio apartments for seniors experiencing chronic homelessness and 253 apartments operated by Bellwether for low-wage workers and other lower income people.

Plymouth also announced a new a partnership with St. Francis House to redevelop its current location on 12th Ave near Yesler with 100 studio apartments above a new space for the homelessness service provider. That project is slated to break ground this winter, Plymouth says.

Earlier this week, CHS reported on plans for a new affordable housing and “education and employment academy” for homeless young people moving forward from YouthCare and Community Roots Housing at Broadway and Pine.

The larger efforts are also joined by a smaller push in Cal Anderson Park where homelessness activists continue their efforts to occupy and transform the Cal Anderson Shelterhouse into a facility to provide services and resources to the area’s underhoused community.

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Duke Nottingham
6 months ago

I am currently living in a transitional housing unit in downtown Seattle. I live off of my social security retirement.I no other other income at this time. I am a veteran as well, if that helps. What are the chances that I would qualify for one of your new units? I am single now, as my wife of over 40 years passed away. Any help or advice would be appreciated. By the way I am 70 years old. Looking for a place that safe and clean.And affordable!

6 months ago

Duke: Just get in touch with Plymouth Housing….they can provide any information you need.

6 months ago

Hi there- if you are in transitional housing, please work with your case manager to get a CEA assessment. Plymouth no longer operates its own waitlists, all referrals must come through CEA (Coordinated Entry for All). Since you are a Veteran, you may want to ask about the VASH program as well, which has set asides in many Plymouth buildings. Best of luck in your housing search.