7-story building proposed over parking lot

Ballard’s growth shows no signs of slowing as new development proposals keep rolling in.

The latest proposal is for a 7-story mixed-use building — apartments and commercial — at 5409 Leary Ave NW. That maps to the small parking lot between Cafe Fiore and the Ballard Landmark.

It goes without saying that parking is at a premium in the Old Ballard area. The new proposal does not include any on-site parking.

The new project is proposed by Skidmore Janet, the same architectural firm that designed Stoneburner in the Olympic Club Hotel.

32 comments on “7-story building proposed over parking lot”

  1. Those parking spots are already reserved for the businesses next to them. This will not affect parking in a meaningful way.

  2. The spots are reserved for the businesses next door, so removing the spots won’t affect parking for the neighborhood? Uhh, where do you think the people who park for those businesses are going to park when the parking lot is gone?

    What a mentally deficient comment. Think for five seconds before posting.

  3. It will bring many new residents who may have cars and that of their visitors. Where will they park?

  4. Would this be the tallest building in Ballard? I can’t think of any tall enough to hold 7 floors.

  5. Parking, parking. Conveniently there is always public parking available inside the Landmark garage immediately next door to this site.

    The only parking problem in Ballard is that people troll around the area for an hour for elusive free parking.

  6. Worried about parking — lol. The City Council, the Regional Transportation Authority, and our Democrat state legislature are systematically making it more difficult to drive a car if you live or work in Seattle. Keep complaining about parking while they put tolls on roads, take away car lanes for buses and bikes, and impose higher and higher fees on owning and driving your car. Yeah 10 parking spots is worth complaining about.

  7. Excellent news. No reason for that space to sit there wasted, with car storage for a handful of people rather than dwellings, of which we are currently suffering a severe shortage. No better place for new housing, either–very walkable neighborhood, major investments in the transit lines serving it with more investments forthcoming (not just the light rail but the 40 and the 44 are in line for rapidride upgrades). As someone who loves living in Ballard, I think it’s great that more people are able to share my neighborhood.

    Good to see taller buildings, too–the higher new development can go, the fewer current structures will need to be displaced to accommodate growth!

  8. For the record, my comment wasn’t in support of the existing parking lot – just pointing out how dumb it is to say that removing the lot wouldn’t affect parking.

    In terms of automobiles, if I had my druthers they’d be completely banned within the city limits. In my opinion, if you drive a car, that’s bad and you should feel bad.

  9. I hope that the architecture firm opts for a design that fits in better with the neighborhood than the hotel’s exterior design. I personally think the Design Review Board made a strange choice for that one. Though I’m getting more used to the hotel’s design, it still makes me feel “meh” about the hotel itself when I’m walking along Ballard Ave 2x a week, and I steer my out-of-town guests to other options.

  10. Cars should be banned? Yep, because there are no elderly, disabled people within the city limits, nor families with children. Nope, this city is entirely made up of childless, pet-free twenty something apodment dwellers, who have no need to carry anything heavier or bulkier than a latte. Please explain how I am going to haul skiis or a kayak to the mountains? BTW, there’s no bus service in Sunset Hill anymore.

  11. Julie, as a car-free family with 2 young children, I don’t appreciate you using kids for your “we must have cars!” screed. We certainly don’t need a car, and other people’s cars are a constant threat to my children.

    I also routinely carry 10ft long 2x4s, conduit, trim, and misc other supplies from big box hardware stores on my bike.

  12. It has come to this: people would complain if they were to tear down a seven story building to create a parking lot. Nimbyism isn’t so much against any growth or density, but rather any change at all. To quote the great Groucho: “Whatever it is, I’m against it!”

    Dick Falkenbury

  13. Why aren’t they required legally to include parking in the building permit process? Who’s job is it not to approve it unless there is?

  14. Walli – why should they be required to build parking? We need fewer cars in Seattle. We also need housing for people. This is a great spot to live without a car. There’s no dibs on street parking. Pay the meter or pay for a space in a lot if parking is so important for you.

  15. Julie – happy for you and your lifestyle. Do you think people that live in 400 square feet will be hauling their kayaks out for frequent sojourns? There’s no one way of living that works for everyone. You like to drive and recreate and are fortunate to live in sunset hill (a different neighborhood). That’s great. Other people have different interests. And that’s ok.

  16. 7 stories?

    Will they have one of those newfangled “elevator” things?

  17. I’m concerned that the hand-wringers and pearl-clutchers will soon be driven out of Ballard. Who will then come to this blog to complain about the lack of parking?

    Won’t somebody PLEASE think of the pearl-clutchers?

  18. I think it’s ridiculous that people would say or even think Ballard needs more housing. Most of these buildings you walk by are barely occupied. Probably because they are renting a studio for $1400.

  19. As Ballard grows it draws more people here, and with that comes more cars. Our public transit system is fine if you wish to go downtown, but try to commute to the east side from Ballard, or do some activity on the weekend out of the Seattle Metro area and without a car you are S.O. L. New buildings should be required to put in parking….and the new residential buildings should be required to provide 2 spaces for every unit and an additional space for every 3 units (for guest parking). We are not, and don’t want to be, the East Coast.

  20. It makes sense to build some apartments (like these) with no parking. People who decide to live there will be much less likely to have cars. People without cars don’t cause traffic. Plus, why force renters to pay for parking spaces they often don’t want?

  21. “I think it’s ridiculous that people would say or even think Ballard needs more housing. Most of these buildings you walk by are barely occupied.”

    Glad to see I’m not the only one who pulls data & facts from where the sun don’t shine.

  22. Removing parking will make it harder for those small businesses relying on this lot for customers and will make it harder for those businesses to stay.

    I am physically disabled. Bussing it is not an option for me, or many others, and mass transit in our city sucks – it is 30 years BEHIND what we need right now. Greg Nickels ‘Urban Village Plan’ has failed miserably… it has displaced as many small businesses as it has blue-collar workers/residents. HALA has failed to generate a significant amount of affordable housing.

    If this were going to be a new homeless shelter or public housing project, I’d be all for it… otherwise it is just part of the problem.

    Gentrification/displacement add to our swelling ranks of homeless. More luxury yuppie kennels will not help the masses who need AFFORDABLE housing. Anyone doubting our need for that needs to volunteer for a few weeks at the Ballard Food Ban, and see the demographics of our housing crisis, before you weigh in supporting prodents like this.

    We are building 8,000 new units of housing each year and increasing… but rents in much older housing stock are still skyrocketing, with large,regressive property tax hikes being passed on to renters… the high number of empty units in new buildings like Parma, or even older buildings in Greenwood, demonstrate that profit is more important to developers than providing the affordable housing we need most. We don’t need more $3k/mo studios with granite countertops and SS appliances…. we need more public housing.

  23. Slums. We need more slums. They’re great at driving down the cost of living. Slums and murders. Slums, murders and crazy people on the street. Best ways to create affordable housing.

  24. If prices are rising even with all the new construction, it means that we’re not building enough. Economics 101.

  25. The conditioning is complete. I read it right here. People HAVE been bought AND paid for. Feeling everything you think you need is within walking distance, or being able to haul a freaking 4 X 4 on your bike means you’ve arrived says to me the Koop-aid is about gone and your anecdotal experiences are very short sighted. We are not some Swiss Alpine village that relays on visitors for $$. You’re playing right into these globalists wants/dreams. Rolling Stones “Under my thumb” comes to mind. I wonder, do you conformists always do what your told? Does anybody care that Seattle is now “just another large American city”? As in, who WILL be left? Balkanization brought to us by the Nuevo-riche. Born here in 58 and can’t wait to soon escape.

  26. Every new residential or business development either brings reasonable commensurate parking and other infrastructure or the government is not doing its job with the codes and enforcement to preserve our way of life in this neighborhood. A way of life we bought into years ago and continue to invest in every day. And because everything is so expensive, we feel “locked in” here. Many others feel the same, and it’s natural. Conservation of volume exists, and it says if you keep crushing more into a fixed space, the pressure and temperature increase until it explodes. That’s why so many people are complaining. We’re being compressed and heated at a rapid rate without control. It’s uncomfortable and scary, it’s obvious there are big winners and losers being chosen by Others in government, and we who were “here first” are the big losers and don’t like it. If you don’t like it, stop voting for the same government officials and new officials that are just like the old ones.

  27. Simon, that’s why it’s in quotes. Most people draw their own subjective line of how things should be based on when they got here. Please read my input for understanding first, rather than judgement. Like “locked in.” My point to readers that are seeking to understand is nobody has to stay here that doesn’t like it. We are not imprisoned here. Do something constructive about it or feel free to leave. Change happens.

  28. “People HAVE been bought AND paid for.”

    I’m still waiting for my check too!!

    Only when my beater, dump of a house is worth $1million will I stop complaining about the parking, buildings taller than 2 stories, developers, newcomers and “hipsters”.

    Then I’ll cut my old, gray pony tail off, stop wearing socks with my Birkenstock and dance all the way to the bank.

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