15821 Leary Way NE
Developer: Roger Nix/ on the lam
Condominium developer Roger Nix has gone missing.
Last known whereabouts: building new condominium complexes so cheap that units are falling apart only a few years after construction.
Last seen: dissolving his LLC and running away with the profits, leaving residents stranded with huge repair costs and no legal recourse.
Purported to be: in Mexico or the Caribbean with suitcases full of money.
So you might be asking, “Where was the oversight on this project?”
Well, it turns out the city inspected the building before it was completed, and clearly before they started growing Kombucha on the walls. We’d like to point out to all aspiring builders, waterproof everything is essential in the Northwest. For God’s sake, look out the window. It’s raining.
Clearly, the worst part of this whole situation is that good people got stuck with an irreparable money pit that ended up being literally poisonous to live in.
The rest of us get to look at this sponge-paint, rice-cake, faux-plywood, rectangle-of-a-low-slung, small-windowed shoe box. That brown wood above the doors isn’t repair in progress, but rather “accent” coloring. We at CSC vote that in five years they pop this thing onto a double wide, and move it to Aurora Avenue to join the other run down hotels.
Photo: Seattle Times
737 Olive Way, Seattle, WA
Developer: RC Hedreen
Architect: Mulvanny G2
Cheapshitcondos had a tour of the soon to be auctioned Olive 8 condominiums.
We were lured by the offer of “an enviable lifestyle on your own terms.” Enticingly, our own terms were to be auctioned with a starting bid of $160,000. Now that’s a cheap seat! Perusing the fine print, we were perplexed to learn that each property has “an unpublished reserve price” which is not the starting bid. This left us wondering, just what is the starting bid? Oh right, it’s the bait.
We had a good look around the 27th floor, admiring the views which can be spectacular, unless you happen to be kissing distance from Ma Bell’s telephone tower to the left.
We viewed units with square footage from about 650 to 1200 sq. ft., but were surreptitiously warned in the fine print that “square footages. . . may vary and are approximations only, based on the most accurate information available.” We were at once reassured that we know five hundred square feet when we see it, but certainly alarmed that the people trusted with building a high-rise could not successfully wrangle a tape measure. The most startling clause in the fine print stated that “models throughout this brochure do not reflect racial preference.” There weren’t any people in the brochure. WTF?
The largest corner units were spacious with grand views and imposing marble kitchen islands. However, the smallest units might require a regular regiment of Prozac to deal with feelings of confinement, windowless bedrooms and a mind-boggling waste of space particularly in the overlarge half bathrooms by the front door. Really, what are you going to do in there?
This condo is miles better than the worst offenders, holding LEED Silver Certification and a prime downtown location, yet it’s going on auction. Economy? Yes. Uninspired mediocre designs trading on views? Yes. It could have been so much better.
The building does have a nice nighttime mood ring on the roof line. Red, stressed. Blue, Prozac. Green . . .