Thursday, August 20, 2015

Dilapidated Building Housing Bike Shop To Be Demolished

"Bye bye building sale" sign on Bike Shop

The Bicycle Center (4529 Sand Point Way NE) is closing on August 31st according to the sign on the south side of the building which says: "Bye bye building sale."

A customer told the Blog staff that the owner, John Marxer, who has been there since 1969,  told him that the building was going to be demolished and that he was going to take a break and open somewhere else in a few months.

The Laurelhurst Blog staff contacted the owner of the building, Kerek, who said:
We do plan to demolish the building as soon as it is vacant.  The design and use of the new building for the property is not determined at this point.
The Blog staff also asked if the original plan underway in August 2007 to "demolish the existing commercial building and construct a 4 story mixed use building with 37 residential units and below grade parking for 49 vehicles" as laid out in City permit #6136600 would again move forward.  

Another permit in April 2013 #3007871 to "construct a 4 story mixed use building with 24 units" was submitted. However, Kerek did not respond again.
In 2005 the upstairs portion of the building sustained about $75,000 in damage after an arson fire supposedly started by an employee who wasn't paid. No repairs were ever done following the fire to the deck, siding or the two-bedroom, two-bathroom apartment, leaving it completely fire damaged.

Two years ago, a volunteer group from University Presbyterian Churchpainted the neglected, visibly blackened smoke-damaged building a bright turquoise color and covered the broken windows with plastic, spray painted in bright green as well. 

A few weeks later, the plastic started to fall away from the windows and flap around in the wind, showing the broken windows and neglected upstairs area.

The dilapidated building has always been a target of graffiti and other vandalism. It took several months for the latest graffiti to finally be removed in February.

Neighbors have written to the Laurelhurst Blog Staff saying:
We are ecstatic to see that this building will be demolished. It should have been demolished years ago as it is quite an eyesore.
We look forward to a brand new building that will not attract vandalism.  
This area needs more walkable restaurants and shops. We hope the owner will consider these options. 
Kudos to the owner for finally taking the step to demolish the building. We are excited as to what will come next.


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