City moves forward with purchase of Storage Court property on Midvale
On January 6, City Council decided to move forward with the purchase of the Storage Court property located at 17828 Midvale Avenue N. This is the location that was the preferred site through the public process and selected by Council for a potential community and aquatics center.
Even though Proposition 1 failed to pass by the required 60%, more than 54% of Shoreline voters voted to approve funding a new aquatic, recreation, and community center. Over the next several months, Council will discuss options for the future of Shoreline’s recreation facilities and aquatic programs, including going out to voters again with a new proposal. Council decided that if they were to go out to voters again with a new proposal for an aquatic, recreation, and community center, the Storage Court location was still the preferred location for a new facility. It is centrally located; easily accessible by transit, bike, and foot; and fits into the community’s vision for a Town Center. Council also believes that with the potential for increasing property values, it makes sense to move forward with purchasing the property now. If Council were to go out for another vote to fund the aquatic, recreation, and community center, and voters were to approve the measure, the site would already be secured and would allow the City to move forward with site preparation and construction as soon as possible.
The City will continue to operate the storage facility until the City obtains the funding to move forward with the construction of a new recreation facility. Should it become necessary to close the storage business in the future, tenants will receive relocation assistance as required by law. Tenants will receive ample notification when and if such plans are put in place. The income generated from the operation of the storage facility will go towards the debt service to purchase the property and operational expenses.
During the election, many people asked why the City would purchase property when the School District offered to allow the construction of a new facility on School District property. The City looked at the cost of constructing the facility on the property offered by the School District near the current Shoreline Pool. We found that even factoring in the purchase price of the Storage Court property, it was more expensive to construct the facility on the School District property. There were a number of reasons for the higher costs, including the need to phase construction; the need to rebuild the tennis courts located at the site and a portion of the School District’s maintenance facility that would need to be taken for parking; and the School District property being located in the new MUR 70 zone, which has some of the strictest environmental construction requirements in the City, adding to the construction costs. These factors, among others, made constructing the new facility at the School District site more expensive than at the Storage Court site.