Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Rumor somewhat confirmed

From the Seattle Weekly article "April Fool: 22 Things About Seattle That We Wish Were a Joke":

A beloved block of Pine Street was leveled to make way for . . . a mound of rubble. It's not enough that developers have license to throw up any towering, fake-brick, leakage-prone, fast-cash-out eyesore during good times. They're also free just to mow down a swath of the cityscape and leave nothing in its place when the tide turns.

One year ago, the 500 block of Pine Street was brought to the ground, and with it a half-dozen quintessential Capitol Hill businesses like Manray, Kincora Pub, and the Cha Cha (some of which were able to reopen elsewhere). This was back in those heady days when building more and more condos seemed like a really great idea. Except this time it turned out not to be.

The economy had already started to turn by the time the businesses were evicted and the buildings knocked down. With the condo market in the crapper, the developer has no intention of doing anything with the property now, and would happily sell it off—if there were anyone to buy. City zoning won't even allow the land to be converted into pay parking. So instead, the Hill has been gifted with a vacant lot. The rounded heap of gravel stands as a tribute to the principle that in density-mad Seattle, neighborhood preservation gets sacrificed to pretty much anything—including nothing.

Wow, when they put it that way, it's even more depressing than it already was. Sigh...maybe Parks will buy it and we can get some more greenspace. I wish.

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