The Olympia Hearing Examiner has approved the site plan for Views on Fifth, a project that aims to transform the vacant and deteriorating Capitol Center Building that overlooks Capitol Lake and Budd Inlet into a mixed-use destination.
Friday’s decision is likely to spark mixed reaction. About 200 people spoke out about the project during a public hearing last month. Some are in favor of the Ken Brogan project, while others have long argued that the building obstructs scenic views.
Despite the testimony, hearing examiner Mark Scheibmeir concluded that the “proposed live/work units are consistent with the designated principal uses of the urban waterfront housing district and are a permitted use.”
He also said the project is consistent with the city’s comprehensive plan and “satisfies all development regulations.”
But the hearing examiner also attached a long list of conditions to the project, including that building permit plans must clearly demonstrate that all new structures meet the height limit of 35 feet.
A motion for reconsideration on the hearing examiner’s decision can be filed within 10 days. The decision also can be appealed to Thurston County Superior Court.
The hearing examiner dismissed an earlier appeal, saying the group’s arguments, which were represented by Olympia attorney Allen Miller, were resolved in previous appeals over plans to redevelop the Capitol Center Building in 2011.