Views on Fifth, the new development slated for the old Capitol Center Building, cleared another hurdle Monday with the city of Olympia.
The city issued a determination of non-significance for the project as part of the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) process. The determination means an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) will not be required. It is not, however, a permit to begin construction.
No building permits will be issued until the public has had a chance to weigh in on the determination.
The proposed project would transform the nine-story building — known to many Olympia residents who dislike the building as the “Mistake on the Lake” — into a mixed-use building with 140 residential units and ground-floor commercial space. Developer Ken Brogan, who owns the property, plans to tear down a one-story building on the lot and build two new buildings.
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One of the new buildings, located in the northwest corner of the lot, would contain a “parking machine” in the center with apartments wrapped around it. The other, located on the southwest corner of the lot, would contain more apartments.
“We’re doing our very best to make an Olympia building, something that ties in well to the blocks beyond it,” said architect Ron Thomas in July.
According to the SEPA checklist submitted for the project, both Budd Inlet and Capitol Lake are about 500 feet from the project — meaning the project does not fall under the Shoreline Management Act.
Small amounts of asbestos and lead paint have been found in the existing buildings. The developer already has received a permit from the Olympic Region Clean Air Agency to remove asbestos from the tower, and to remove the other building, according to the SEPA checklist.
Brogan will have to pay the city an estimated $167,000 in transportation impact fees for the project. The developer intends to convert Simmons Street Southwest between Fourth and Fifth avenues into a three-lane road — one lane of traffic in each direction, and a center two-direction turn lane — to alleviate the impact on traffic of people turning into the development.
The public can send written comments regarding the determination of non-significance to Nicole Floyd, a senior planner with the city of Olympia. Comments also may be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org, and must be submitted by 5 p.m. Dec. 18.
Any appeals must be filed with the city’s Community Planning and Development Department by 5 p.m. Dec. 26.
The city’s hearing examiner will conduct a public hearing on Jan. 9 prior to deciding whether to issue a land-use approval permit for the project. The hearing will be at 6:30 p.m. in multipurpose room A-B of the Olympia Center at 222 Columbia St. NW.