Freeman buys more property in Bellevue's downtown
By Tom Boyer
Seattle Times business reporter
Adding to his real-estate holdings near Bellevue Square, developer Kemper Freeman paid $11 million for the land and building that houses Scan | Design Furniture.
The proceeds go to a charitable foundation begun by Scan | Design's founder, the late Jens Bruun, which supports Danish-American relations and pain research.
The store, at 10515 N.E. Sixth St., will remain in the same location for the next two years before moving elsewhere in downtown Bellevue, Scan | Design President Kent Grimes said.
Kemper Development, Freeman's real-estate company, bought the property while finishing the Lincoln Square condominium-retail-office project across the street.
"We don't have a plan for the property yet," said Jennifer Leavitt, vice president of marketing for Kemper Development. "It's a logical piece of property that makes sense for us."
The seller is an unusual breed, a furniture retail chain that soon will be owned by a nonprofit foundation.
Scan | Design and the rest of Bruun's estate will merge with the foundation over the next year, the foundation's president, Mark Schleck, said.
Bruun, who died in 2002, started selling Scandinavian furniture in Bellevue in 1962. The business grew into eight locations in Washington, Oregon and Hawaii.
Bruun created the foundation before he died, earmarking money for studying pain after meeting researchers in Denmark while he was on a business trip, Schleck said.
Among the foundation's beneficiaries are the Seattle-based International Association for the Study of Pain, the Nordic Heritage Museum in Ballard, and the Northwest Danish Foundation.
The foundation has about $18 million and will have nearly $30 million after the sale of the Bellevue property.
"It seemed to be a propitious time for this kind of a transaction," Schleck said. "This seems to be a very hot time for Bellevue real estate."
The $11 million sale price for the three-quarter-acre property works out to $339 a square foot for the land. The property is valued at $3.57 million by the King County Assessor's Office.