5th and Madison Opening

At lunch on Friday I snuck away to attend the 5th and Madison green space opening.

(Williams Marketing PR was kind enough to email me a good photo of the ribbon cutting.)

There was about 40-50 people there for the ribbon cutting ceremony which was hosted by Bryon Ziegler of Williams Market. Surprisingly Leslie Williams was not in attendance. However, there was a jazz band competing with the construction noise making it hard for small talk.

As part of the ceremonies a few people spoke:

Diane Sugimura – Director, Seattle Department of Planning and Development

  • She liked the creative site re-use. The site used to be a drive through bank.
  • It’s good to scatter residential in the downtown core
  • Glad to see them greening the existing building
  • The park will provide an oasis in the downtown core

Kate Joncas – President of the Downtown Seattle Association

  • There is a deficit of park space downtown
  • This project has good design and good values

Todd Stine – Architect for the project from Kennedy Wilson and Ruffcorn Mott Hinthorne Stine

  • First project in Seattle
  • This celebrates their third year in Seattle
  • They used a sloping pane to conenct the green space with 5th Ave.
  • There is a 27,000 gallon buried cistern that provides enough water for the park
  • They used native adaptive plants
  • Green roof
  • Waterfall mitigates noise

Richard Muhlebach – Senior Managing Director, Kennedy Wilson

  • Joint project
  • First green condo high rise in Seattle; it’s LEED Gold
  • Office besides it is being converted to green and will be LEED Silver
  • 95% of construction material waste is being recycled
  • Building green is the right thing to do.

Other notes:

  • There’s 32 unsold units
  • 5 units will likely come back on the market
  • Recent purchaser tried to negotiate the price but developer wouldn’t budge
  • Some units don’t have tubs
  • Some floor plans built out with walk in-closets, some not. They made this change in response to feedback from interested buyers. Turns out couples were finding there wasn’t enough closet space.
  • Probably 3 more months of work required to get everything all finished
  • People started moving in about a week and a half ago

I talked to a few residents and their initial concerns have been over the amount of noise from ongoing construction and their Comcast cable hasn’t been working. But we ran into a Comcast cable guy in the elevator and it sounds like the cable will be functioning soon.

I also took a few photos of the exterior and the interior of a few units (thanks Steve for the tour!)


I like 5th and Madison but I think it takes a true urban dweller to live in the downtown core given how it turns into a ghost town after 6 o’clock. Hopefully these brave few are paving the way for the rest of us in a few years.

Bonus link: $150 million dollar condo in Manhattan

About Matt

Matt , Urbnlivn's publisher, has a love for lofts, floating homes and mid-century moderns.

For years Matt resisted becoming a real estate agent preferring to be an executive at Redfin but he recently caved in the spring of 2014 and became an agent. If you're interested in working with Matt, drop him a line at matt@urbnlivn.com. You can also find Matt on Twitter or skiing.

  • Tiffany

    wow the mark has a place for $150 million? i worked there in the early 90’s, right after they renovated it. funny seeing that place referenced in a seattle blog.

  • Tiffany

    wow the mark has a place for $150 million? i worked there in the early 90’s, right after they renovated it. funny seeing that place referenced in a seattle blog.