Development plans at historic Seattle site irks neighbors

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by JAKE WHITTENBERG / KING 5 News

Bio | Email | Follow: @jakewhittenberg

KING5.com

Posted on July 12, 2013 at 6:55 AM

Updated Tuesday, Jul 16 at 10:11 AM

The Seattle City Council is expected to decide soon on the future of the Talaris Property in Seattle's Laurelhurst neighborhood. A zoning change could pave the way for a series of apartment buildings to be built on the property, which started as the Batelle Research Institute in 1965.

"We think there is a real opportunity here to create something very special," said Nathan Rimmer. He’s a representative for 4000 Properties LLC, which owns the 18 acre property. "This can be a real forward thinking, sustainable neighborhood."

The proposal is to add 200 units in separate three- and four-story buildings on existing foundations. But many are not convinced it’s the best idea. Leaders of the Laurelhurst Community Club say the land is historic and the company is not committed to working with the neighborhood.

"We are a single family neighborhood. That's what we like and that's why people moved here," said Jeannie Hale, President of the LCC. "It's quiet, peaceful and family oriented, and apartments don't work."

The land use agreement comes with restrictions on development, including preservation of green space.

The Seattle City Council will decide on the potential rezone from single family to multi-family residential in 2014. 4000 Properties LLC says construction would not begin for more than a year.

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