Foster may very well be growing up, figuratively and literally.
It was just a few weeks ago that Holst Architecture presented plans for their four-story, mixed-use affordable housing project slated for development at SE 72nd and Foster. Barely more than a week before that, construction was already underway several blocks west, where a three-story, thirty-unit apartment building will rise just behind 10th Planet Jiu Jitsu at SE 58th and Foster. Combined, 131 units of housing and commercial space will be added to the corridor.
The addition of housing on Foster is a good thing. People will inevitably worry about parking, more traffic, and the character of the neighborhood being forever changed. All valid concerns. However, we are experiencing a housing crisis, and more housing in the neighborhood should help ease the historic rise of rent both locally and city-wide. Housing along the corridor, too, should make for a more vibrant and sustainable community. Yes, it’ll change the landscape quite a bit. But remember, we still have a lot of vacant/dilapidated buildings, old historic structures, auto shops, and absentee property owners that will prevent a large-scale transformation over night. In other words, we can still enjoy the grimy Foster that we all love and adore for a little while longer…while also enjoying an influx of new housing and an increasingly vibrant commercial strip.
To that end, we can now expect the total number of units built on the western stretch of Foster to increase by 33. In addition to the 131 units already under construction or close to it, we’ve learned that the vacant lot at 5045 SE Foster is one step closer to development. As we’ve noted before, the former Busy Bee Cleaners lot has been slated for development for
over a year (when Busy Bee was demolished and rumors started floating around.) After receiving early assistance from the city back in April, the developers have finally submitted commercial building permits, and we have a few more details about plans for the lot. Bremik Construction will be the builder for the project, and plans call for four stories of mixed-use development; three stories and 33 units of housing will sit atop a single floor of retail space at ground level. A rooftop deck is also part of the plans.
This project will presumably be market rate, and will take advantage of its proximity to multiple bus lines that pass nearby, as well the north/south bikeway along SE 50th. Speedboat Coffee, nextdoor, should be a big beneficiary of this project.
There is no timeline attached to this proposal, and we’re not sure how quick the turnaround is between permit intakes and their issue. But we do know it brings to 164 the number of units in the near-term pipeline for Foster. Stay tuned for more…