Friday, January 24, 2020

Billboard Near Old Baskin-Robbins Removed Today

The large billboard at Five Corners, the busy intersection of Mary Gates Memorial Drive NE, NE 45th Street, NE 45th Place and Union Bay Place NE, was removed today, in preparation for the upcoming construction of Aegis Living's Memory Care Center.   

Several years ago, The Laurelhurst Community Club submitted a letter to the City requesting the billboard be removed, stating in part:
The billboard at this intersection contributes to driver distraction, even more so in recent years due to Code changes that authorize video components to signs and billboards.
Aside from driver distraction and the accompanying bicyclist and pedestrian safety issues, the billboard at Five Corners is unattractive and out of context.  An oversized billboard at this location gives the feeling that one is driving on SR 99.
When the Sand Point Naval Air Station was conveyed to the City of Seattle in 1997, the need for this section of NE 45th Street to be held as a state highway spur was eliminated.  It would be wonderful to now remove this vestige of state highway appearance and restore the aesthetic environment to one appropriate for an arterial that winds between residential neighborhoods. 
Over the years, the Laurelhurst Community Club Board of Trustees has heard from many neighbors complaining about the billboard at Five Corners for the reasons that we have cited. 

Aegis Living's Memory Care Center, will be a six story building (55-70 feet), containing 135 units with 53 parking stalls, and 2500 square feet of retail on the first floor, housing a salon and cafe, according to the design proposal submitted in July 2016.

Bryon Ziegler, Director of Development and Entitlements for Áegis Senior Communities, told the Blog Staff, that they are anticipating permits in late 2019 and the construction period is likely 20-24 months with the first resident move-in’s the fall of 2021. Aegis anticipates approximately 80% of the residents will come from the local neighborhoods. 

The new building will be on an assemblage of parcels includes 3200 and 3232 NE 45th Street and 3215 NE 45th Place. These are two buildings, but three parcels.  Most of the businesses on these parcels, Diane’s Alterations, Lakeview Vision Clinic, Edward Jones, Farmers Insurance, Uncle Lee’s, University Tutoring, Felipa’s Consignment and Rules Salon, have already moved to new locations.

Another retirement home is also under review for 4020 NE 55th Street, where the Hawthorne Hills Veterinary Hospital is currently located, across the street from Metropolitan Market. The proposal, Permit #3025827, includes 3 stories of approximately 73 units with 3,100 square feet of commercial space and parking for approximately 30 vehicles located below grade. The existing structure would be demolished. The architect has proposed 3 different alternatives which can be seen here.

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