Photos of Lumen Units Up For Auction

Three years ago I toured the Lumen sales center and I liked the project. It was modern, clean looking, minimalist kitchens and was unlike anything else in Seattle.

I don’t know why it has taken me so long to see it in person, but now that I have, I see why it is going to auction this Saturday.

It did not turn out well at all.

For the most part the units are stark white walls and ceiling with concrete floors. They are cold and uninviting. And this is from a fan of exposed concrete! I think the problem here is in the execution. The units just don’t have a clean look. Instead there’s features and indents all over the place jumbling up what should be clean lines. And then they clearly cut corners in some areas…

It’s worth noting that the staged unit does look reasonable so a little paint goes a long way. But I wouldn’t be caught dead buying one of the fish bowl courtyard units which feature a disconcerting loud humming from the air conditioning units (they should have put them on the roof).

Weird things:

But the weirdest thing is the pricey HOA’s, which are $0.63/square foot, for minimal amenities, and the rumor I heard is that they are likely going to increase. Something funky is going on here.

If I were you and had my heart set on Lumen I’d go for “auction number 14″ aka unit T303. With wood floors and some exposed concrete it just feels right.

583265835 yhysr S Photos of Lumen Units Up For Auction

Check out my 108 photos.

About Matt

Matt , Urbnlivn's publisher, has a love for lofts with industrial features and new construction condos that is only eclipsed by his passion for outdoor sports and urban living. Phrases such as “polished concrete” and “exposed brick” are music to his ears. You can also find Matt on Twitter or skiing.

  • http://www.mikeindustries.com/blog/ Mike D.

    Even worse than the execution is the location. That was a death wish from day one. Right on the busiest stretch of Mercer? No thanks. Right above a gaudy looking QFC? No thanks. Right across from major, ongoing construction? No thanks. This is a terrible location for a terrible condo.

  • Amir

    I don't think the location is terrible, but I definitely wouldn't want a unit facing Mercer … or, for different reasons as Matt mentioned, a courtyard unit.

    The high dues aren't as bad when you consider they include cable and internet (at least that's what a rental unit listing I was looking at stated) … plus I wouldn't consider the amenities “minimal”: concierge, lounge, media/game room, rooftop terrace, business center, just no fitness center right? What I'd consider minimal is something like what you get at Veer Lofts: a bocce ball court, and … oh that's it. These loft buildings usually have higher dues anyway, because they base it on volume rather than area.

    And speaking of Veer Lofts, this loft access ladder is even worse than Veer's “flexi-lofts”! (but at least Lumen's lofts are full height)

  • brad

    I see in picture #92 of your series, they have the kitchen's oven positioned mere inches from a rather large and tall window? Would this be a problem opening a 400+ degree oven right next to such a window in the wintertime for example?

  • Lumen Resident

    I live in Lumen ON Mercer AND facing the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation …and I find it great.

    Yes, the building has it's issues (what building doesn't, right?). But once you fill a room with furniture, the road noise cuts down. Plus, I'd much rather be looking at the B&MG NBBJ-designed campus (http://www.gatesfoundation.org/500-Fifth/Pages/…) than the vast majority of other architecture going up in the city at the moment.

    Location is awesome – walking distance to SLU, Queen Anne AND Downtown, not to mention fast access to Magnolia & Ballard (via Interbay), Westlake, Fremont and Eastlake (Mercer to Westlake/Fairview) and Cap Hill (Mercer to Aloha). Plus, two-way Mercer is moving forward (although years away – http://www.thesouthlake.com/2009/07/05/make-way…). Lots is happening around this property that is pretty favorable for value over the next 5 -10 years.

    I can't say much for the units that are up for auction – a lot of what Matt points out is spot on – hence part of the reason those are at auction (and one of the most desirable of the bunch closed ahead of auction; 2 are actually closed already). One thing I would point out is how much I love the great room with kitchen in it. When we bought we were worried this might feel wierd or be awkward for entertaining. It's turned out to be exactly the opposite! I love being able to cook and still be with all of my guests. I think Rollins Street does this as well, to great effect (and perhaps with better materials).

  • Dan L

    No offense to those who live at Lumen, but overall it looks awful. I like some of the wood and exposed concrete, but for the most part the units have such a laboratory feeling. And that hot tub isn't helping, it looks like where Dr. Evil keeps his ill-tempered sea bass.

  • EconE

    Matt…you really take great photos…seriously. Your pics convey the entirety of the units (for any project) much better than any MLS photos I've ever seen.

  • Marce

    Brrr. Pass.

  • GoCougs

    Are you an owner or renter? Are you not at all concerned about the value impact the auction is going to have on your unit?

    I am not dogging on you, you make good points, but I would be a little freaked.

  • Jose B

    Nice review Matt – I was waiting to hear more about these apts.

    they have promised but they lacked execution – probably cutting cost at the last seconds and it shows

    and it's EXPENSIVE – there are other options….

    thanks again

  • Lumen Resident

    Owner. And as you would expect, I'm concerned / nervous. But at this point, whatcha gonna do? It is what it is and I just figured I'd share what I feel is positive about the project.

    There were certainly execution issues, but there's definately highlights – for example, I've got multiple feet of concrete above and below me and the kitchens & cabinetry in many units are built across a wall – I virtually NEVER hear my neighbors. It's awesome!

  • GoCougs

    Are you an owner or renter? Are you not at all concerned about the value impact the auction is going to have on your unit?

    I am not dogging on you, you make good points, but I would be a little freaked.

  • Jose B

    Nice review Matt – I was waiting to hear more about these apts.

    they have promised but they lacked execution – probably cutting cost at the last seconds and it shows

    and it's EXPENSIVE – there are other options….

    thanks again

  • Lumen Resident

    Owner. And as you would expect, I'm concerned / nervous. But at this point, whatcha gonna do? It is what it is and I just figured I'd share what I feel is positive about the project.

    There were certainly execution issues, but there's definately highlights – for example, I've got multiple feet of concrete above and below me and the kitchens & cabinetry in many units are built across a wall – I virtually NEVER hear my neighbors. It's awesome!