Seattle Office Space News – April 2015

News

Below are comments and links to news articles and other topics relevant to the Seattle office space market from the month of April 2015.

PROPOSED DEVELOPMENTS

April brought on a handful of new proposed developments as developers are eager to cash in on the hot office space market.  Urban Vision announced this month that construction could begin as early as 2016 on Stadium East, a 1.2 million square foot mixed use campus in So-Do. The campus is designed by NBBJ and there has currently been no pre-leases signed.

Seattle based developer Martin Selig, continued his buying spree in April purchasing a parking garage and building across from Bed Bath and Beyond on Third avenue. Selig thinks the project will have 150,000 square feet of office space with an undetermined amount of apartments above the office space.

It was revealed in April that Seattle Children’s is planning a thirteen story downtown research facility at 1920 Terry Ave. The project named Building Cure will contain 440,000 square feet of research space; it is unclear of the timeline for the start of construction.

Clise is looking at three possible design options for its large mixed use complex at 2301 Seventh Ave. The proposed development calls for 181,000 square feet of office, 21,000 square feet of retail and 750 housing units. The possible design options are the Cubist, The Angle, and The Grid; you can see more details on these options here.

BUILDING SALES

In a HUGE deal, Expedia purchased the 750,000 SF former Amgen Campus along Seattle’s waterfront for $228.9 Million or $304/SF.  The online travel company will renovate the buildings and relocate their headquarters from downtown Bellevue to the 40 acre campus in 2018.  This news came with anguish from many employees who believe commute times will increase exponentiallyHere is more info on the site.

It was confirmed in April that Martin Selig was the winning bidder of the former Federal Reserve Building located at 1015 Second Ave. Selig paid $16 Million for the 99,148sf building or $161/SF.  Selig has plans to upgrade the interior of the building and rent the premises as office space. Selig’s plans aren’t formalized, but the redevelopment will likely include adding floors and expanding the existing footprint to the building that is protected under the National Register of Historic Places.

Antioch University has put its current 65,000 square foot headquarters at 2326 Sixth Ave on the market. The building, which is directly next to Amazon’s huge four building campus was purchased twenty years ago for $3.8 million.  The property is currently appraised at $19.4 million.

OFFICE LEASES

The University of Washington inked a new lease for 53,400 square feet of office space that Seattle Based Blume Company is developing in the University District.

Big Fish games has continued to expand in its current building taking over an additional 28,000 square feet and will soon occupy the entire 137,500 square foot building at 333 Elliott.

Just down the street, global technology company IMS Health is moving into the P-I Globe building located at 101 Elliott. IMS has signed a ten year 32,250 square foot lease and the 101,725 square foot building is now full.

TUNNEL/VIADUCT

The giant tunnel boring machine Bertha spent all of April out of the ground and under repair.  The project, which was originally scheduled to be completed in December, is now more than two years delayed.  In 2009, the Legislature passed a bill that the state would not pay more than $2.4 billion for the project, if there are substantial cost overruns it is unclear who will foot the bill.

In connection with the Viaduct project crews have been inspecting the Viaduct and have found two new cracks since the last inspection in October. There have been several visible cracks and sinking reported as the tunnel project proceeds.  WSDOT continues to assure the public that the viaduct is safe.

ECONOMY

April was another month of indicators for explosive growth and rising expenses in the Seattle area. In technology news, local execs posted this article about Seattle’s booming startup scene referencing that 32% of people cited the regions quality of life and natural beauty as a driving force behind growth.

Here is an depth look at all of the engineering centers that companies based in other areas have set up in Seattle. It is interesting to note that only 42% of the 1,403 venture capital deals in the last five years have come from in state investors.

In residential real estate news, the Seattle area has the lowest supply of homes ever recorded, 2.2 months, which ties San Francisco as the most competitive market.  With the decrease in supply of homes for sale, rent are on the rise. Seattle is #10 on the most expensive cities to rent list. Forbes also ranked the most expensive cities on total cost of living and Seattle came in at #16.

In another indication of a booming economy, construction costs are also on the rise.

Finally, Seattle’s cruise industry is expecting a record year with more than 192 ships bringing 900,000 passengers through Seattle’s waterways this year.

OTHER NEWS

Here is a profile of office space occupied by cloud company Blue Box and this article has pictures of different tech company spaces for Bungie, Edifecs, Limeade, Moz and Synapse.

Finally, future real estate mogul William Gregory Hayden was born on April 13, 2015 at 10 lbs 8 oz and is happy and healthy!

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