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272 Less Rental Units in Belltown, Rents Expected to Rise

There have been several rants posted about the teardown regarding the infamous McGuire apartment building, which has been an eyesore in Belltown for years.  The scaffolding has been leached along side the exterior for what seems like ages, and now infamously blends well with the building’s paint job.

First off, this is a positive story for a couple reasons:

  1. It’s the most interesting thing so far this year!  As opposed to a decline in home prices, or more fallout in the mortgage industry, the biggest news to hit the downtown Seattle market is the teardown of an ugly building. 
  2. For those who have investments downtown, there are now 272 less rentals available, and several people are expected to raise their rental rates somewhere around $100+ more per month.  This will influence supply and demand.

The questionable part of this news was brought to attention by Tim at

This brings up an interesting question to me. Eight to ten years from now as the plentiful high-rise products of the housing bubble begin to age, how many similar situations will we see cropping up? With this so-called “upscale” apartment being torn down after less than ten years, I can’t help but wonder just how much attention to detail was really given to the latest batch of towers as developers rushed to cash in on the gold rush.

Tim brings up an excellent point.  Nine years ago, during the beginning of Belltown’s condo boom, the neighborhood was just starting to plant its roots of a residential urban community.  Now, almost 10 years later?  One of Seattle’s most respected architects also said this about the building on Facebook, “Top notch developer/architect/structural engineer on this project, it makes no sense.”

Now, when is demolition day and who’s selling front row seats?  Will there even be a demolition, or is it actually going to be “dismantled”?

Maybe now that prices on condos are agreeably low, many of these high-end paying renters may see this as a good time to buy… .