Category Archives: News

Preparing a Legal Response to Lanz Fremont Project 3026875-LU

The current design of the Lanz Fremont 3-story 32-unit apartment building being proposed for construction at 3959 & 3965 Fremont Ave N, across the street from B.F. Day Elementary school, still places the primary entrance off a narrow residential alley behind a dead-end street, even though the project street address is Fremont Ave N. This means that all vehicular access for deliveries, pick-ups, moving, etc. would be though lower density residential streets of upper Fremont. Also, this design fails to provide direct access to Fremont Ave N for people who are unable to negotiate stairs.

Donations needed for legal appeal
We are at the stage where we need to take legal action against this project and we need your help. Donations to support our legal appeal can be made through the PayPal button below.

Or you can write a check to Friends of Upper Fremont, and send to:
Friends of Upper Fremont
3953 Fremont Ave N
Seattle WA 98103

Friends of Upper Fremont is a 501(c)(4) nonprofit organization. Donations are not tax deductible. All donations are confidential.

Please help us protect the character and livability of the Upper Fremont neighborhood we all love by supporting our fight. Thank you!

City Public Meeting for Lanz Fremont Project 3026875-LU

Dear Neighbors,

The Seattle Department of Construction & Inspections (SDCI) has scheduled a public meeting so that neighbors concerned about the proposed 32-unit Lanz Fremont Microhousing project (#3026875-LU) at 3959 Fremont Ave N can provide their feedback to the city.

Where and when

The public meeting location and date/time are:
Good Shepherd Center, 4649 Sunnyside Ave N, Seattle, Room 202
on Tuesday, June 26th 6:30-8:00 p.m.
This is located on the east side of Meridian Park.

Our petition made this meeting happen
It is important to note that this meeting is not part of the default design review process for this project.  The Lanz Fremont Microhousing project is subject to the Administrative Design Review Process, which does not include a public meeting.  However, we submitted enough neighborhood signatures on a petition to force a public meeting (thanks to all who signed the petition!).  Now the city is going to have to listen to what we have to say about placing an LR2 Urban Village 32-unit Microhousing complex, next to a Single Family zoned block, with only entrance off a narrow dead-end residential alley, requiring all vehicular traffic to go through our low-density neighborhood.

The city has posted information about this meeting around the neighborhood on telephone poles so we know the time and place of the upcoming meeting and can start preparing to be vocal.  Please mark your calendars!  Let’s plan to converge on this meeting in force to give the city an earful.

What is Lanz Fremont proposing to build now?
The developer of the Lanz Fremont Microhousing project is proposing to build a monolithic building consisting of 32-microunit apartments.  These apartments will likely be less than 300 square feet each.  The developer is also proposing to provide no off-street parking, and still wants to put the only entrance to the building off the narrow dead-end residential alley between N Bowdoin Pl and N 40th St, even though the project site is comprised of two Fremont Ave N addresses, 3959 & 3965 Fremont Ave N.

In this redesign, the developer has conceded to retaining and improving the existing old stairway from Fremont Ave N. to 3959 Fremont Ave N.  However, no entrance on the east side of the building (facing Fremont Ave N.) has been added, and the stairs cannot serve as access for the disabled.  The only entrance – for all – still remains off the alley.  The developer is stubbornly refusing to put the primary entrance facing Fremont Ave N. because he understands, that for an apartment of this size, a Fremont Ave N. facing primary entrance would likely force him to install an elevator to provide access to the disabled from Fremont Ave N. to the building.  Let’s try to make him put in that elevator by insisting that the primary accessible entry must be from Fremont Ave N.!

Fig 1.  East view (from Fremont Ave N) of 32-unit Lanz Fremont

  Fig 2.  West view (from alley) of 32-unit Lanz Fremont

Fig 3.  South view of 32-unit Lanz Fremont

Fig 4.  North view of 32-unit Lanz Fremont

Shown below is a drawing created by our neighbor Emily Li, which clearly shows how large and out-of-scale with the rest of the neighborhood the proposed building is.  The left of this sketch shows the size of a neighboring residential garage across the alley from the project site.  Also note the car and people standing in the residential alley between the garage and microhousing building.  It is off this very narrow alley where the developer proposes to put the only entrance to the building!

Fig 5.  South view section of out-of-scale building compared to existing neighborhood garage and alley

Wait, wasn’t this 29 units before?  And didn’t the city issue a report that said to put the primary entry from Fremont Ave N?  What happened?
Yes, yes, and the developer has responded by ignoring the city guidance to put the primary entrance from Fremont Ave N while additionally increasing the number of proposed apartments from 29 to 32. In other words, this Mercer Island based developer has chosen to give the proverbial middle finger to our neighborhood.

 

Public Meeting Tuesday June 26, 2018 and current comment period deadline Wednesday June 27, 2018

Please let the city know what you think of this ill-conceived project.  Come to the scheduled public meeting and speak your mind!  Again the public meeting location and date/time are:

Good Shepherd Center, 4649 Sunnyside Ave N, Seattle, Room 202
on Tuesday, June 26th 6:30-8:00 p.m.

You can also submit written comments at the meeting, or you can send your comments to the PRC (as many comments as you want).  Your comments can be written in an email, or letter attached to an email, and sent to:
prc@seattle.gov
subject: 3026875-LU at 3959 Fremont Ave N

Neighborhood Meeting Monday 12/18 at 7 pm

Dear Fremont Neighbors,

 

Our Friends of Upper Fremont neighborhood group will be holding a neighborhood wide meeting to discuss the 29 unit Microhousing development, with no provided parking, that is being proposed for construction in our neighborhood.

 

The meeting is next Monday, 12/18/2017 at 7 pm.
The location is 3965 Evanston Ave N.

 

Below is a picture of the buildings that the developers are proposing to build with entrance and sole access on a dead-end alley.  They are planning to put no direct access to Fremont (not even a stairway), and they will provide zero off-street parking!
Inline image 1

 

The short public comment period for this wildly inappropriate design is scheduled to end soon (either on Dec 27 or Jan 3, the city can’t seem to make up it’s mind about this).  We need neighbors to please submit their comments of opposition to this design.
Update: The deadline for public comment has been extended to Jan 10, 2018.
 
Please come join us to discuss this design, the impact it will have on our neighborhood, and what we can do about it.
Please invite any other neighbors or friends that you think would also be interested in coming to our meeting.  Also, if you know of anyone who wishes to be added to our contact list please have them email us at friendsofupperfremont@gmail.com.

Notice of Proposed Land Use Action

A Notice of Proposed Land Use Action sign was put up on Fremont sometime around Dec 8, 2017 for the proposed microhousing project (#3026875) at addresses 3959 and 3965 Fremont Ave N.

It is interesting to note that although the Approved Presubmittal Minutes of 8/1/2017 listed the early guidance item:  Meet with neighbors to hear concerns and questions, share concept ideas, the developers arranged no such meeting and instead chose to put up the notice of land use action so that the short public comment period would take place during the winter holidays.  The developers also put the sign up in front of the wrong property (they placed it in front of 3955 Fremont Ave).

Fortunately, two of our observant neighbors quickly emailed the SDCI (Seattle Department of Construction & Inspections) regarding the improperly placed sign, and the suspicious holiday timing of the public comment period that appears to be designed to limit the amount of resistance to a project that they know is uniformly opposed by the neighborhood.  The PRC (SDCI Public Resource Center) responding by granting a 14 day extension of the public comment period.  This moves the deadline for public comment from Dec 20, 2017 to Jan 3, 2018.
Update: The deadline for public comment has been extended to Jan 10, 2018.

We Need All Concerned Neighbors to Submit Comments!

The public comment period for this project closes on Jan 10, 2018.  Please let the SDCI (Seattle Dept. of Construction & Inspections) know what you think of this microhousing project, proposed for our neighborhood, by submitting you comments to the PRC (SDCI Public Resource Center)

Write your comments in an email, or letter attached to an email, and send to:
prc@seattle.gov
with the email subject line:
3026875 at 3959 Fremont Avenue North

You can view all of the public documents regarding this project (3026875) at the PRC website.  Click the link below, and then click the Attachments tab to see all developer submitted documents and public comments.