Mike Hlastala has seen the future. And it runs on rails.
His year-old company plans to build more than 700 apartments and 40,000 square feet of shops a few steps from Sound Transit’s Othello Street light-rail station on Martin Luther King Jr. Way.
A trip from Othello to Pioneer Square should take just 17 minutes when trains start running next year. Hlastala figures lots of downtown workers — tired of traffic, $4 gas and $300-a-month parking — will be interested in apartments like his.
Exactly. The number of units is astounding, “more than 1,500 condo and apartment units within a 10-minute walk of a rail station” by private developers and a large number more places like New Holly built with Housing Authority funds and right next to Othello Station. The image above is a rendering of one of two private developments built on the other side of MLK from New Holly.
There is a risk that the new residents will push out the current, diverse, relatively low-income residents of the valley. Though I guess this is a problem throughout the city from South Park to Jackson Park.