Ballard residents ambush Seattle mayor over development

by: Deborah Horne Updated:

SEATTLE - For more than a century, neighbors say, the house at 1715 Northwest 58th Street has been home to a single family. 

"And I discovered a couple of weeks ago,"said Bruce Meyers, "that it was going to be some type of apartment."

And not just any apartment. But a 43-unit boarding house across the street from the townhouse Meyers bought four years ago.

"We're concerned what the impact will be on the neighborhood," he said. "What the impact will be on the greenway. What the impact will be on the sewage treatment."

His neighbors are upset, too.

"Because there will be possibly up to 77 people living across the street from me," said Joe Walton. "With no parking."

So they took their protest to Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn.

'I live across the street from it," Meyers told the mayor.

McGinn happened to be attending an event already planned on the neighbors' street.

"The city's been negotiating with the developer since February," Meyers added.

So we asked McGinn what he thinks of these micro housing projects.

"What we've seen is the rise of these micro apartments because it's affordable living for people who don't want to own a car and want to use transit and ride a bike," said McGinn. "And they've been very popular. And it's an affordable way for a young person or an older person to live in the neighborhood where they work."

Neighbors say that may be, but they believe the development is wrong for their neighborhood.

We emailed and telephoned the developer to get his side of the story. But we never heard back.

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