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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The City is looking at two proposals for redevelopment of land it owns in downtown Federal Way next to the City's transit center. One of the proposals is really cool -- 890 condos, townhomes & apartments; three 22 story buildings; one 16 story building; a large park; and LEED certification. It's part of the City's effort to create a "real" downtown in King County's third largest city. Below is the link to the proposal on the City's website. They want to begin construction next year.

http://www.cityoffederalway.com/fol...rredevelopment/United Properties Proposal.pdf
 

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Welcome to the forum also! Thanks for bringing up the Federal Way's high rise start up project! I hope that will help fuel some highrise boom in coming future.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the welcome. I'm really excited about the project. I hope to buy one. I don't know if there are any highrise projects as tall as this one in the region outside of Seattle and Bellevue.

They say the design is very preliminary. When the design is complete, each of the buildings will look different from each other, so that it doesn't look quite so uniform. The principal architect designed the Cristalla and Paul Allen's 2200 Westlake project. The developer is from Vancouver.

Also, most units will have views of either Mt. Rainier, the Cascades or the Olympics (depending on which direction they face). West and North facing units above 12 stories should have a view of Puget Sound.
 

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Journeyman
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What a stunning addition to Federal Way that would be! The volume of units as well as the height would put some "there" there pretty quickly. And right next to good transit.
 

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Whoa- red flags - I didn't pick the whole thing apart but assumed sales prices of $290-$300/sf are not high enough to support high-rise construction. Neither are the rents @ $1.35/sf/mo but they are seeking tax-exempt bind financing to plug the gap there. Fed Way better be wary of these guys being selected, doing the dance for a while, and then looking for help when the numbers -shockingly- don't work.
 

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Journeyman
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I can't find the other proposal on their site. Also can't do it by messing with the pdf link using "Williams & Dame" or "Cosmos Development".
 

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....

i think it is land there is significantly cheaper. the thing says the total cost is of the project is 20,000,000. i think 890 units would more then cover that
 

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assume $0 land value. It'll still be- miniminally $200/sf hard cost and 50% soft cost for $300/sf to build. At the very low end. High $300's would be a better guess
 

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Twinkie
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Wow! Great news for Federal Way. I'm glad they're taking a step in the right direction. It'd be great if their new downtown center was built around the transit center (which is going to be the link light rail station too i hope?). That'd be awesome to just have a straight ride up to Seattle or down to Tacoma. And did the seatac mall close yet? Federal way's in an awkward position retail-wise since its sandwiched between two great malls (Tacoma & Southcenter). Having an attractive downtown with street-frontage stores will help make FW unique among the southern suburbs.

oh and maybe seapug forgot to add a 0? 200m?
 

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Me too! Glad to see Federal Way atleast "thinking" toward higher density. I think both Federal Way and Lynnwood would make great high density edge cities, and it looks like both now have some plans!
 

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Journeyman
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Wow! Great news for Federal Way. I'm glad they're taking a step in the right direction. It'd be great if their new downtown center was built around the transit center (which is going to be the link light rail station too i hope?). That'd be awesome to just have a straight ride up to Seattle or down to Tacoma. And did the seatac mall close yet? Federal way's in an awkward position retail-wise since its sandwiched between two great malls (Tacoma & Southcenter). Having an attractive downtown with street-frontage stores will help make FW unique among the southern suburbs.

oh and maybe seapug forgot to add a 0? 200m?
Well, Renton, Burien, Sea-Tac, Kent, Auburn, Puyallup, Lakewood, and University Place also either have traditional "downtown" retail strips or are planning them. The difference is they're not high-rise districts.
 

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Don't hold your breadth on this one. Unless Fed Way subsidizes the life out of (or in this case into) this it won't be built as depicted any time soon (five year horizon). The market is not there IMHO. Check out the "context" plan. I just don't see wealthy people spend highrise-type dollars to live next to Toys 'r us, Executel, Tj Maxx, etc. And yes, you need wealthy people-type rents to pay offf high-rise construction

That said, you could very well have all the public sector components proposed plus bond-financed mid-rise apartments, some nice townhouses and the park and potentially make it work.
 

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Another welcome, and thanks for posting. That was a pretty interesting read (err, skim). I am surprised also that is public. It definitely has a 2200 feel to it. Call it the FW2200. But, definitely would be a huge step forward for that area.
 

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WOW! That rendering is very impresive! GO FEDERAL WAY! :banana: I still haven't had chance to explore Federal Way area since I always go though on I-5. How far from downtown area from I-5?
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
The cost of construction versus their projected rents and condo pricing is definitely a question that was raised at the public meeting. The developer explained that they are using steel frame and a patented hollow-core pre-fab concrete flooring that allows them to build highrise construction at near wood-frame construction prices. They have real life examples of using the technique in their projects in other cities, including Vancouver and Phoenix.

The City is at no risk here because the City is simply selling the land, not participating financially other than the housing tax exemption. The developer also stated that they have reached an agreement to sell the rental towers (pre-construction) to a reit -- spreading the risk. The condo units are being built in two phases, with the first phase construction beginning when 30% presold.

Besides, bringing 250 or so condos online is not that risky considering there is very little competition for this type of development outside Seattle or Bellevue. People who want to continue to live in the community but no longer want a 3,000 sq. ft. house and yard don't have options. A good example of this is the very successful first high-rise residential project that was built in downtown Bellevue not all that long ago -- surrounded by surface parking lots and strip retail.

Besides, I think their estimated pricing is on the low end of what is supportable in the Federal Way/South King/North Pierce market and they will find that they can charge much higher prices -- but hopefully not before I get a chance to buy one. :)
 
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