Affordable housing units are planned for a vacant 10-acre site, formerly home to a Kmart, along Evergreen Way in Everett. (Lizz Giordano / Herald file)

Affordable housing units are planned for a vacant 10-acre site, formerly home to a Kmart, along Evergreen Way in Everett. (Lizz Giordano / Herald file)

Former Kmart property in Everett sells for $18 million

Developers hope to begin construction in 2021 on a five-building, six-story affordable-housing project.

EVERETT — More than 400 units of affordable housing are one step closer to development after the $18 million sale of a vacant 10-acre retail center along Evergreen Way.

DevCo LLC, based in Bellevue, purchased the property at 8102 Evergreen Way — formerly home to a Kmart — with plans to tear the building down, according to David Ratliff, the company’s vice president.

Planning began last year for the project, which will include five six-story buildings totaling 430 units of housing for tenants averaging less than 60% of the median income in Snohomish County. The county’s median household income was $87,440 in 2018, the latest figures available.

“It is a terrific corridor to have this much scale on,” Ratliff said. “We are really happy to be long-term owners here.”

Construction is hoped to begin in early 2021, Ratliff said, with a project of this size normally taking 24 to 30 months to complete.

McDonald’s and Everett Dialysis Center, which currently occupy the lot, will remain, although separate access points will be built for each.

The lot neighbors a planned station site for the Everett Link Extension of Sound Transit light rail at Highway 526 and Evergreen Way.

“With a light rail station planned adjacent to it, schools all around it, jobs, retail and dining options within walking distance, this site is ideally suited for the demands of increased affordable housing in Everett,” said Dan Eernissee, economic development director for the city of Everett. “Our planning department worked effectively with the developer and we will work to continue to bring these types of housing opportunities to our city.”

According to Ratliff, a second stage of the project that would add more housing on the lot’s southern portion is still in the distant future and dependent on negotiations with Sound Transit.

The planned apartments resemble the ongoing Riverview project — 203-units of affordable housing on the 16000 block of Marine View Drive in north Everett — in appearance, but the new development will be double the size, Ratliff said.

DevCo is also responsible for the Axis apartments in the Lake Stickney area and the Gateway apartments near Henry M. Jackson High School.

Everett “is a budding area and for our target demographic there is a very large tenant base,” Ratliff said of DevCo’s work in the city.

“We look forward to a continued partnership with Snohomish County,” he said.

Ian Davis-Leonard: 435-339-3449; idavis-leonard@heraldnet.com; Twitter: @IanDavisLeonard.

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