Contact Us

Condo Reverted, Then Converted

Condo Reverted, Then Converted
The Burien City Council recently voted to extend its standstill agreement with Harbor Urban on two properties that were almost condos but have reverted to their natural state—that is, plots of land.But Harbor Urban is now thinking market-rate apartments for the site, managing director Jim Atkins tells us.
Harbor Urban Managing Director Jim Atkins at his downtown office.
Burien is about the last place in the area where construction is at a standstill, so what's the key to moving forward? Know thy competition's new project. Jim, who's spearheading Viktoria Apartments (Harbor Urban/Goodman Real Estate's new 24-story apartment tower on Second Ave) recently visited Goodman's Post, Pine Street Group's Via6, and Vulcan's The Martin to scope the scene. What impressed him? "Location to Amazon," he says. (That's the same reason we bookmark Amazon's homepage.)
A rendering of Belltown's Viktoria Apartments.
"The landscape in the downtown core is getting crowded, I will concede that," Jim says. So what sets Viktoria, set to open in Q1 of 2014, apart? Tenants will be getting "the exterior of a condo and the interior of an apartment," the upside of having purchased a condo project from the bank.
The South Lake Union Streetcar in downtown Seattle.
Of course, rapid transit like Vancouver's Skytrain or Portland's streetcar not only keeps your socks dry, it serves as a development catalyst. Jim's vote is expanding the streetcar system, connecting South Lake Union to Jackson Street and the King Street transit hubs. "When the weather's not ideal, I look for the train," says Jim, who walks to work from his home in Pioneer Square, of the 360 or so days per year when it rains.