Leaders in the city of more than 21,000 people have been promoting denser development. (Veer Architecture, PLLC)

Leaders in the city of more than 21,000 people have been promoting denser development. (Veer Architecture, PLLC)

Work starting on buildings along I-5 in Mountlake Terrace

More housing and retail is going in near the planned light rail station.

MOUNTLAKE TERRACE — This city of cinder block ramblers is growing up.

Anybody driving I-5 can look east and watch the latest spurt taking place just north of the King-Snohomish county line.

Earthwork started last week on the former site of Evergreen Elementary School, where a developer is planning hundreds of apartments plus ground-floor businesses. The first step is punching through a new north-south road connecting the Mountlake Terrace Transit Center with 244th Street SW. Once finished, Gateway Boulevard, the new thoroughfare, would serve as a welcome mat of sorts.

That’s not all. Things could really change with the arrival of Sound Transit light rail, now expected in 2024.

“This is a transit-oriented development, with the idea that people who live there will be able to walk to the light-rail station,” said Roger Collins, the CEO of Woodinville-based Sierra Construction. “I think it’s going to bring a vibrancy that Mountlake Terrace has not seen to this point. It will tie in with the city’s gateway project to provide a new front door to Mountlake Terrace on 236th (Street SW).”

Mountlake Terrace Gateway Transit Oriented Development project summary (PACE Engineers, Inc., Veer Architecture, PLLC, Shockey Development, Inc., and Transpo Group)

Mountlake Terrace Gateway Transit Oriented Development project summary (PACE Engineers, Inc., Veer Architecture, PLLC, Shockey Development, Inc., and Transpo Group)

Leaders in the city of more than 21,000 people have been promoting denser development, taking advantage of the commuter-friendly situation along I-5. The City Council voted earlier this year to make it easier to build townhomes in the commercial district, east of the transit center.

The council approved a contract for the current project, now known as Terrace Station, about two years ago.

“Terrace Station is one of many current projects to implement a Town Center Vision established by our City Council several years ago,” city manager Scott Hugill said.

“This high-profile project gives Mountlake Terrace more housing choices and commercial opportunities in close proximity to our future light rail station.”

The nearly 10-acre campus of Evergreen Elementary accounts for most of the 14.6-acre site. The Edmonds School District voted in 2009 to close the school as a cost-saving measure. The district sold the property for nearly $4 million in early 2016.

The developer purchased the neighboring parcel in 2014 for $3.6 million.

A developer is planning hundreds of apartments plus ground-floor businesses. (Veer Architecture, PLLC)

A developer is planning hundreds of apartments plus ground-floor businesses. (Veer Architecture, PLLC)

Collins hopes to finish work on Gateway Boulevard by the spring of 2020, at a cost of about $8 million. Then, the developer plans to dedicate it to the city.

The road would connect to 236th east of the transit center entrance, Hugill said.

Soon after the road opens, Collins expects to complete the first of the three planned five-story buildings. The initial building would have about 250 apartments.

Under the city agreement, the deadline to complete all of the buildings is 2026, Hugill said.

All told, there would be about 600 apartments plus about 80,000 square feet of retail. A mix of shops, restaurants and possibly a fitness center could make a good fit, Collins said.

Mountlake Terrace Gateway Transit Oriented Development project summary. (PACE Engineers, Inc)

Mountlake Terrace Gateway Transit Oriented Development project summary. (PACE Engineers, Inc)

The project could bring healthy activity back to a vacant area that became a gathering place for homeless people after the school’s closure, he added.

Light-rail tracks will travel up the freeway right-of-way, just west of the construction site, to a stop at the transit center. By 2024, Link light-rail trains should connect Lynnwood and Mountlake Terrace with downtown Seattle, Sea-Tac International Airport, Bellevue, Redmond and Federal Way.

Noah Haglund: 425-339-3465; nhaglund@herald net.com. Twitter: @NWhaglund.

Talk to us

More in Local News

The Washington National Guard arrived Friday at Providence Regional Medical Center Everett to help with a surge of COVID-19 cases at the hospital. (Providence) 20220121
State offers free home tests; National Guard arrives in Everett

Supply is limited at a new online portal, but Washingtonians can now order five free rapid COVID tests.

Cassandra Lopez-Shaw
Snohomish County judge accused of ‘needlessly’ exposing staff to COVID

Adam Cornell argues the incident reinforces a need to suspend jury trials, as omicron wreaks havoc.

A rendering of the Compass Health Broadway Campus Redevelopment looks southwest at the building. The facility is planned for 82,000 square feet with a behavioral health clinic with a 16-bed inpatient center and a 16-bed crisis triage center. (Ankrom Moisan Architects)
Demolition eyed in spring for Compass Health Broadway campus

The Everett-based behavioral health care provider wants to replace the 1920-built Bailey Center with a modern facility.

A car drives by flowers placed at a memorial for two pedestrians killed at the corner of 204th Street NE and Highway 9 on Friday, Jan. 21, 2022 in Arlington, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
$500K bail for driver accused of killing 2 Arlington pedestrians

Elliott Bagley, 28, told an officer he’d had a couple beers before the crash Thursday, according to police.

vote
Ballots sent for special election on public schools’ funding

Levies to pay for staff, programs, computers and capital projects are on the Feb. 8 ballot across Snohomish County.

Houses along 88th Drive SE visible from the utility access road slated to become the Powerline Trail on Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022 in Lake Stevens, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Neighbors hold out on plan for new Lake Stevens trail

The city wants to build the Powerline Trail from 20th Street SE to Eighth Street SE. But homeowners have some concerns.

A car drives by Everett Station where Everett Mayor Cassie Franklin's proposal for its ARPA funds includes funding a child care center at station. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald) 20211118
Billionaire Bezos wants to bring free preschool to Everett

The Amazon founder’s program would be housed at Everett Station. Admission would be determined by lottery.

Connie L. Bigelow at her store Miniatures & More in Edmonds on Tuesday. (Janice Podsada / The Herald)
Woman who lit her own Edmonds doll store on fire gets house arrest

Connie Bigelow, 54, was sentenced Friday in federal court for lighting her business on fire to collect insurance money.

People across Snohomish County share their thoughts on two years of life during the pandemic. 20220123
Anxious, weary, hopeful: How we’re coping with COVID

The pandemic has taken a toll in Snohomish County, where the first U.S. case was confirmed. Here’s a time capsule of life in 2022.

Most Read