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Community Roots and SCIDpda cut ribbon at 13th & Fir project

Last week, the number 13 spelled luck for families in Seattle. On Tuesday, June 13, 13th & Fir officially opened its doors to the community. A ribbon-cutting ceremony featuring remarks from project leaders will began at noon in front of the building (115 13th Avenue, Seattle, WA 98122).

Part of a larger effort to address Seattle’s critical shortage of affordable housing, 13th & Fir brings 156 new apartments to the Yesler Terrace neighborhood, across the street from Bailey-Gatzert Elementary School. Designed with families in mind, 13th & Fir apartment sizes range from studios all the way up to 4-bedroom units, and will serve those earning 30% and 60% of the Area Median Income. The Denise Louie Education Center will operate an 8,000 square foot childcare and early education center – serving an additional 97 children and their families – on the ground floor of the building, near Denise Louie’s first and original location. The new building also includes roughly 2,500 square feet of retail space for local businesses.

13th & Fir is a joint partnership between two public development authorities, Seattle Chinatown International District Preservation and Development Authority (SCIDpda) and Community Roots Housing (CRH). The project marks an important milestone in the redevelopment of Yesler Terrace. In the early 1940s, the Seattle Housing Authority established Yesler Terrace as the first public housing development in the state and the first racially integrated public housing in the country. Census data designates the location as an area with a high risk of displacement and high level of access to opportunity. In 2018, SCIDpda and CRH won a joint bid to Seattle Housing Authority to develop a mixed-use affordable housing project on a lot that previously served as the site for the King County Archives. Today, 13th & Fir stands in one of the most central neighborhoods in Seattle, offering new, current, and previously displaced residents convenient access to jobs, school, healthcare, transit, and opportunity.

“This project allowed our organization and development partners to co-create a uniquely cohesive place for families to grow and access nearby resources in affordable housing that was designed with them in mind,” said Jamie Lee and Jared Jonson, Co-Executive Directors of SCIDpda. “We are incredibly excited to see the community move in and truly make 13th & Fir their new home.”

SCIDpda, an organization with 48 years of providing services to immigrants and communities of color, serves as the primary developer and property manager. Community Roots Housing serves as co-developer on the project, Mithun is the architect, and Marpac Construction is the general contractor.

“Working families are being pushed out of the city by a lack of affordable, appropriately sized housing,” said Christopher Persons, CEO of Community Roots Housing. “Our hope is that the three- and four-bedroom homes at 13th & Fir foster empowerment and stability for families in search of a place they can call their own.”

13th & Fir was made possible through a partnership with the Seattle Housing Authority (the landowner and a project funder), the City of Seattle’s Office of Housing, Seattle Human Services Department, and the Department of Commerce’s Early Learning Facilities program. Construction financing is provided by Capital One and JPMorgan Chase, and equity is provided by Hudson Housing Capital and Capital One.

For more information about 13th & Fir, please visit the official website at Members of the media are encouraged to attend the grand opening event to learn more about this transformative development and its impact on the local community.

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