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[IMGCAP(1)]SEATTLE-Vulcan Real Estate, the real estate arm of Microsoft Corp. co-founder Paul G. Allen’s Vulcan Inc., continues to have big plans for the city’s South Lake Union neighborhood after finishing what the company calls “a banner year” in 2007. Vulcan’s plan calls for 10 million sf of new housing, offices, life sciences research space, retail shops and other development in the South Lake Union area.

Vulcan remains “bullish on this marketplace,” according to Ada M. Healey, vice president of real estate at Vulcan Inc. “We look forward to making further progress towards creating a vibrant and sustainable community in South Lake Union in the coming year.”

Vulcan is working to redevelop more than 60 acres in the rapidly growing South Lake Union neighborhood, making it one of the largest urban redevelopment projects in the country. Vulcan Inc. and Schnitzer West in 2007 signed Amazon.com to a 1.6-million-sf headquarters deal under which the online retailer will occupy 11 buildings to be built on six blocks immediately north of the Seattle CBD in South Lake Union. Also in 2007, Vulcan signed Microsoft to lease space in Seattle for the first time in a 126,000-sf deal at the developer’s new Westlake/Terry project.

Vulcan is going green in its development efforts for the South Lake Union district, which is one of 238 communities across the country accepted in the USGBC’s LEED Neighborhood Development national pilot program.

“The momentum underway in this neighborhood is unmistakable,” Healey says. In 2007 Vulcan unveiled plans to build up to 1.7 million sf of office and retail space for Amazon.com’s corporate headquarters, leased an additional 140,000 sf to other new office tenants and leased 40,000 sf of retail space. To date, Vulcan has delivered 1.7 million sf of the planned 10 million sf in nine projects for commercial, biotech, residential and mixed-use space on its South Lake Union land, bringing Vulcan’s entire real estate portfolio to 2.6 million sf. The company also has nearly one million sf under construction and 2.2 million sf in the pre-development pipeline.

Among Vulcan’s projects are 2201 Westlake, which includes a 12-story office tower and a 19-story residential tower atop a five-level retail and office podium. In total, the project will contain 300,000 sf of office, 135 luxury condominiums and 25,000 sf of retail.Occupancy is scheduled for early 2009. Also in South Lake Union, the company has already completed the 317,400-sf, two-building Westlake/Terry complex, which now serves as Group Health Cooperative’s new headquarters and houses nearly 700 administrative employees.

[IMGCAP(2)]Another medical-oriented project, which was occupied in 2005, is the renovation of a four-story, 105,000-sf former Washington Natural Gas headquarters that is now a UW Medicine research and office facility. The building is the first phase of a new hub for UW researchers that could total more than 800,000 sf when completed.

Vulcan also is under construction on Veer Lofts and Rollin Street, two condominium projects with a combined 307 units and 26,500 sf of retail space. Veer Lofts is expected to open by mid-2008 and Rollin Street in early spring 2009. The company’s other multifamily projects now under way include Borealis Apartments, a 33,000-sf development with 2,500 sf of retail, providing 53 apartments priced to be affordable for families earning 80% of the median household annual income for King County.

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