Client: Gerding Edlen
Location: Seattle
Size: 428 apartments, plus retail and community space

A large, high-profile, mixed-use project atop a new light-rail station in Seattle’s main neighborhood for hip culture and nightlife.

All eyes on Capitol Hill Station

Capitol Hill is Seattle’s main center for restaurants, cafes, boutiques, bars and dance clubs, and also features some of the city’s oldest, grandest, mansions, apartment communities and parks. While the neighborhood contains many recently developed apartment communities, the Capitol Hill Station development is particularly big and could hardly have a higher-profile location, being atop the new light-rail station and at the center of Broadway, one of the neighborhood’s main drags. So it was particularly important for developer Gerding Edlen to get things right.

A high-rise on the edge of Downtown Seattle

The Capitol Hill Station project includes four buildings, with 428 apartments (including 178 affordable units), approximately 30,000 square feet of ground-floor retail and a 1,335-square-foot community room available to the public, plus a public plaza that will host the Capitol Hill Broadway Farmers Market and other events, and 210 underground parking spaces. Nonprofit agency Community Roots Housing (formerly Capitol Hill Housing) developed one of the buildings – Station House – as affordable apartments, while Bentall Kennedy’s U.S. Core Fund partnered with Gerding Edlen on the rest of the project.

An overarching theme, with three variations

Capitol Hill contains an astoundingly diverse array of offerings and serves an equally diverse cross-section of the population. The size and nature of the Capitol Hill Station project – containing four apartment buildings, each with ground-floor retail – allowed Red Propeller to recommend an overarching positioning that encapsulated the diversity of Capitol Hill and appealed to a wide target audience.

For each of the three market-rate buildings, we then developed sub-identities that focused in on specific aspects of Capitol Hill and particular segments of the target audience. We tailored our recommended unit mixes, amenities and design direction for each of the buildings to these identities and audience segments.

Our recommendations for the development’s public spaces and retail uses brought the three sub-identities together into one cohesive experience.

Gerding Edlen worked with community representatives to ensure the project reflected neighborhood priorities, including the community room, a permanent home for the farmers market, pedestrian and bike access, and sustainable development. The developer also partnered with The AMP: AIDS Memorial Pathway on plans for a public art program that marks the impact of the AIDS epidemic on Seattle and King County.

The resulting community, Connection on Broadway, opened in 2020 and remains a market leader.