Former Fran’s Chocolates headquarters could be bulldozed

Mar 14, 2016, 2:14 PM | Updated: May 8, 2016, 2:16 pm

What once housed a company that caters to our sweet tooth could be demolished to cater to an ever-growing city.

The former Fran’s Chocolate headquarters at
1300 East Pike Street is going to be redeveloped to make way for more housing in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood, according to city documents.

Related: Say goodbye to Capitol Hill’s rundown post office building

The developer plans to demolish the current structure, but use elements of it to “enhance design.”

Though the property was identified as significant to the community in a 1975 historic inventory, it was not cited as a potential landmark by the Landmarks Preservation Board.

“While it retains its original massing and some of the original south facade storefronts, the building appears to have lost much of its historical integrity,” the developer wrote in its preliminary evaluation.

Fran’s Chocolates moved from Capitol Hill to the original Rainier Brewery site in Georgetown in 2014. The company increased its space from about 7,000 square feet to 32,000 square feet.

Though the site of the well-known business might carry historical weight for some, the only public letter regarding the project came from a concerned building owner who encourages on-site parking.

“There is so many buildings being built that off-street parking is extremely difficult to find and expensive,” the letter states.

The developer intends to build a “first of its kind” sustainable apartment building at the location, according to plans submitted to the city. Plans include a “passive house design” that reduces energy needs “to as close to zero as possible.”

The preferred plan includes building 50-55 residential units in five stories. There would be a bottom floor for commercial space and below-ground parking.

What are they building?

What are they building?


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Former Fran’s Chocolates headquarters could be bulldozed