Seattle’s latest downtown hotel project boasts 170 rooms, 10 apartments, and 15 bike stalls right in the heart of downtown. And no parking.
About 13 percent of the 50,000 residential units built between 2012 and 2016 were constructed in Seattle without parking. Seattle has been “incrementally changing legislation so less parking is required in places with more frequent transit service, and as other travel options have improved.”
Seattle hasn’t required developers build new stalls for downtown since the 1980s. That has spread to other, more dense areas around the city. The argument for this is that it adds to the cost of rent; an additional $500, according to a study out of Portland. Parking stalls cost about $55,000 per spot, which is a pricey amenity for developers. So no parking (where other transportation options are available) means cheaper rent and less expensive construction.
The city’s reasoning for this centers on residential projects — residents have other options. A hotel, however, is an entirely different use. If you live in an apartment with no parking, you can ride the bus, use rideshare, etc. If you are staying in a hotel, chances are you got there somehow. It seems logical that a traveler in need of a room would have a car that got them to the hotel. Sure, unless they flew into Sea-Tac Airport, took the light rail line, etc. You get the point.
The project is slated for 2033 4th Avenue (a Jiffy Lube on the property will be torn down). It doesn’t have any catchy or official name yet. But it’s being paid for by Silver Cloud Inns & Hotels. The first two floors are reserved for a hotel lobby, restaurant, and bar space. Floors three through 18 will house guest rooms. And floors 19-20 will offer studio and one-bedroom apartments. Above that on floors 21-23, the building will have a conference center, bar, and a rooftop pool.
That’s a lot to pack into one building. Good thing they don’t have to worry about any parking to take up space.
The city doesn’t track how many hotels are built without garages, according to a representative from Seattle’s Department of Construction and Inspections. They do note, however, that “cities such as Portland, have hotels which do not provide parking within the building either. In some cases, they valet park within existing garages.”
According to the city, Seattle is oversupplied with parking by about 30 percent. So there likely will be some spaces nearby for a valet to take a car to.
Though, Seattle drivers who often spend time circling the block might not agree with that assessment.