BikeSport moving to make room for 7-story building

Just one street north of Market in Central Ballard, NW 56th St. is best described as a quiet collection of small businesses, banks and strategic parking spots, anchored by the Ballard Library. But a sudden spike of development activity will soon transform the street into a high-density hub.
The latest case in point is 56th at 24th Ave. The massive Mark24 development is under construction between Market and 56th (left), enveloping the Spirit Gas Station. Behind the Mark24 is BikeSport, a small business that’s moving to make room for a proposed 7-story assisted living complex.
“We’ve been in Ballard 20 years, and we’ll be in Ballard another 20, just off the trail,” said BikeSport’s James Wilker. Off the trail will be at 4550 9th Ave., next to Bevmo. Wilker says they plan to move in the next couple weeks or so.
The new development will be a senior living resident owned by Merrill Gardens, a Seattle company that has 10 other residences in the state of Washington. Here’s an early look at the proposed design from the corner of 56th and 24th:
And the view along 56th, behind the Mark24:
“Each Merrill Gardens community is different in physical structure, reflecting the characteristics of the area where it is located and the needs of residents,” the company explains on its site. The Ballard facility will feature 104 units with parking for 64 vehicles. Retail space will be available on the 24th Ave. side.

You can download the early design deck (.pdf)

6 comments on “BikeSport moving to make room for 7-story building”

  1. “reflecting the characteristics of the area where it is located” So, you mean the Ballard one will be soulless and destructive? So glad I left.

  2. Nice to have some age diversity in the neighborhood :) It will be good for seniors to have drug stores, grocery stores, and coffee shops only a short walk away, too.

  3. Interesting point, Becka — we’ve already got one new senior building in central Ballard, and here comes another one, and our only walkable drug store (Bartell’s by the library) is going to be demolished. I hope Ballard Plaza Pharmacy is ready for all the extra business.

  4. There are a number of others: the Ballard Landmark on Leary near Market is only a few years old, there’s a big complex down 56th or 57th less than a block west of 24th.
    I do hope that the street-level retail won’t be the usual over-priced and thus under-utilized space we often get with these buildings. I notice that the city still requires it, even where there is already a glutted oversupply, but seems happy to waive requirements for off-street parking in shortage zones.

  5. This building is not particularly attractive, but is innocuous enough.

    the new bike sport location is quite nice on the other hand– the bevmo building has a few material changes at least which make it interesting.

    this is another dumpy block that needs redevelopment.
    the new building going up at 65th & 24th is another prime example. I know many of you are nostalgic for the bar or barber shop on that block, but really this is a gateway to ballard that was ripe for redevelopment for the better.

    both this and that are good for ballard.

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