The Commuter Building and Waterfront Seattle Program
The Windermere Building
Earlier this month, Martin Selig Real Estate partnered with John Jacobi of Windermere Real Estate in the acquisition of the Commuter Building @ 815 Western Ave. Slated to be called “The Windermere Building,” the four story building will be renovated into an 18-story mixed-use tower with 300,000 square feet of office space, 25,000 square feet of retail, and 150 residential units.
Image via Wikimedia
Built in 1906, the Commuter Building was bought for use as a meat-packing factory in the late 1920s, and called the Carstens Building after its owner Thomas Carstens. The main floor was altered by the architecture firm Schack Young and Myers, and Turner & Pease, a local butter manufacturer, utilized the space as a grocery store . In the late 1990s, the Commuter Building was renovated for seismic and safety upgrades, and the exterior of the building has been significantly altered several times since its construction.
The Windermere Building won’t be the first upgrade to downtown Seattle’s waterfront. “The Waterfront Seattle Program” has begun, sparked by the upcoming removal of the Alaskan Way Viaduct in 2019, and is expected to be complete in 2023. The revitalization of the waterfront from Pioneer Square to Belltown is a large-scale redevelopment project that should breathe new life into the Elliott Bay area, increase business, and provide improved public spaces for the community.
This program covers the construction of several businesses, residential areas, and public roadways around Elliott Bay, such as an expansion of the Seattle Aquarium, a more accessible pedestrian connecting walkway from the waterfront to Pike Place Market, additional vehicular and pedestrian connecting roadways, and the Seawall Project. The Seawall Project includes the revamping of the aging seawall along the waterfront, and major elements were recently completed last year.