The historic triangle building on Ballard Ave, known as the Flatiron Building, has just been sold for $2.4 million. The previous owner was James Lathrop, who’d planned to open a restaurant/bar called Ballard Republic in the space. However, after waiting over a year and a half for city permitting, he had to forgo his plan and sell it off to pay back his original purchase.
“I was out of money and out of time,” Lathrop says. When he first bought the building in 2015, he wanted to open a second location of Cannabis City, a marijuana store just south of downtown Seattle. However, he then changed tack and decided to open Ballard Republic because he thought it would be more profitable. But he didn’t anticipate the waiting game for permitting.
“I basically didn’t have any choice. I had to sell it because I had to pay off the previous owners.” His deadline to begin building was July 1 – the sale was finalized on July 31.
“It’s another example of how hard it is do business in this city,” he says.
Lathrop said the new owners are going to pick up the permitting process where he left off to open a bar/restaurant. He says they plan to do a wizard-themed bar, aimed at appealing to the gaming crowd in Ballard.
We’ll check in with the new owners soon to find out when they plan to open their wizard bar.