A new Bellevue apartment complex is nearing completion, and is expected to open this Spring. The project, titled Soma, is a step in the “green” direction. The building is by developer John Su and is located on Main Street. The building will have 80 units ranging in size from studios to two-story townhomes. The hope is that the systems and construction will allow for energy efficiency and the building will have the first “geo-thermal” well system in the city. Rental demand is continuing to rise in this rough market, so it’s good to know more options are becoming available. It will be interesting to see the lease rate in comparison to other downtown Bellevue apartments like those in the Bravern Towers, which were recently converted from condominiums. Soma is extremely close to the downtown core, and if priced right, the development should be fairly successful. Follow the link to search for other downtown Bellevue rentals.
Three units were architecturally changed into one two bedroom unit with three baths. Extensive office space, large cooks kitchen, dining and living rooms for entertaining, his and hers baths in the master. Built-in wet-bar, flat screen TV’s, sliding doors to HUGE view of Lake WA, Seattle and moorage! West facing Lakeside stretches the width of the Building. This rental in available for $3,500. Find this rental and others by clicking here.
The 520 Bridge is almost ready to begin tolling, and the cheapest way to travel over the bridge will be signing up for a Good To Go account. The Good To Go account comes with a transponder, available for purchase at Safeway stores for $5 dollars. Transponders are activated by a license plate number and deposit, the use of which is necessary because the lack of toll booths. The toll will be taken out of the user’s pre-paid account as they cross, and those without a transponder will be fined, thanks to the cameras taking snapshots of license plates. Good To Go is the state’s most recent electronic tolling system, and WSDOT expects the tolling on 520 will help keep costs to work on the bridge at bay. Toll amount will vary throughout the day, which was planned to encourage driving during off-peak hours. Good to go passes are available online, at Safeway stores, or at service centers. Visit the official website for more information.
Most Seattlites now about Burgermaster, the drive-up eatery with awesome burgers and fries you eat in your car. Lucky for us, there are five locations in the Greater Seattle Area. The original is over in the U-District, and the others are in Mill Creek, Everett, on Aurora and the other is across the water in Bellevue, just off of 520. Burgermasters get more than their fair share of visitors every day, but the weekend is definitely the busiest. A friend of mine found himself waiting to park for about 15 minutes when he went to the Bellevue location this past Saturday. I guess you have to be patient to get a burger from a classic, Bellevue joint. If you’re ever in the area and need a bite, check out Burgermaster and get a banana malt…they’re fantastic!
The Bellevue Downtown Association said goodbye to one of its 30+ years members, Kemper Freeman. Freeman’s father was one of BDA’s founders (1974) and the Bellevue Square Developer. Kemper announced his withdrawal from the organization in January. The organization who maintains they focus on being a city with amazing retail, companies and residential neighborhoods are now considering bringing East Link, a new Bellevue bound section of South Transit Light rail to the city. Kemper, however, opposes the light rail and felt Bellevue needed to expand freeway and metro transit instead. The Bellevue Downtown Association is now 242 members large, comprised of a variety of developers, property owners and community members.
A portion of 405 in Bellevue will have lane closures this weekend. Lanes of northbound I-405 from SE Eighth Street to Highway 520 will start closing at 11 PM Saturday night. One lane will close at 11 PM, two will be closed at 1 AM Sunday, and three will be closed at 3 AM Sunday. All three lanes will open no later than 10 AM Sunday morning.
Only one southbound lane on I-405 will be affected. One lane between 520 and NE Fourth Street will be closed, but it will begin earlier, 7 PM Saturday night, and end by 10 AM Sunday morning.
In addition to the lane closures on I-405, some lanes will be closed on the I-90 bridge late Saturday night to early Sunday morning. Despite the lane closures, I-90 will be the preferable route between Bellevue and Seattle since the 520 bridge will be completely closed on Saturday night at 11:59 PM until Sunday morning at 7:30 AM.
There was no announcement if the closure of the 520 bridge applies to dogs.
Zeb, an Australian shepherd, was spotted on the 520 bridge heading towards Bellevue. Plenty of witnesses saw him on his journey, especially drivers on 520 bridge, many of which drove defensively and helped protect Zeb. Turns out Zeb was merely homesick. Zeb was staying in the Lake Union area, while his family was out of town. Apparently, Zeb decided to head home to Madrona and some how wound up on the 520 bridge. The State Department of Transportation tweeted saying a dog “walked entire length of 520 bridge!” Zeb was later spotted in Medina, and finally found in Hunts Point, and is now safe at his Seattle home.
Zeb, is now the most famous dog on both sides of Lake Washington, and probably won’t forget his trip to the Eastside for a long time.
Downtown Bellevue had two restaurants open Friday night, Munchbar and Piano Bash, bringing some new and adverse venues/nightlife to the always blooming city of Bellevue. The two restaurants are the brain children of MunchGroup, a team of three Las Vegas-based professionals with combined talents of culinary expertise, and business marketing and management. Munchbar offers unique dishes to “hit the spot” including jazzed up versions of pizza, and mac n’cheese, as well as homestyle cooking like chicken and waffles. The interior, as I’ve been told, looks like “stuff out of a comic book”, as quoted by a friend who wasn’t so impressed. I think that this type of fun atmosphere may be a good addition to the sometimes stuffy feel of Bellevue. The restaurant also turns into a nightclub, weekends after 10 p.m. complete with spinning DJs and a dance floor. Piano Bash is said to be entirely different, however, being the first dueling piano bar in Bellevue. Other well-known piano bars in the Greater Seattle area include Chopstix and 88 Keys. I’ve enjoyed Chopstix the times I’ve gone, and being an Eastside resident, I’m happy to hear that a similar venue will be much closer to me. Piano Bash offers small plates from the shared kitchen and cocktails from a large bar. Pianists at dueling pianos take requests and invite you to sing along. This weekend, the grand opening will continue with Saturday the 5th’s appearance of Frank Mir, UFC Heavyweight Champion hosting a UFC party and Sunday the 6th, throwing a major party for the Super Bowl. I can’t wait to see this place for myself. I’m ready to see something new