What made the Chevrolet site developable for Dally was the county’s ability to participate in the cost of the parking, part of which could be shared for park-and-ride. Although the city was not to be a financial partner, Renton deemed the introduction of park-and-ride acceptable due to the fact that the same stalls could be shared with other uses and that the stalls would be built underneath the structure. The deal structured between the county and Dally Homes is essentially a lease. The county agreed to pay for public transit users to park in 150 of the 240 total stalls underneath the 90-unit apartment house, for 30 years. The remaining 90 stalls are for exclusive resident use. Thirty of the 150 park-and-ride stalls are also available to residents and visitors in the off-hours not necessary for transit use.
The city considers the park-and-ride lot to be “transitional parking”. Otherwise, the city indicated it had no interest in allowing a park-and-ride to be sited in the middle of its revitalized, pedestrian-oriented downtown core. To satisfy the city, the county put a clause in the 30-year lease with Dally allowing assignment of the lease to the city in year 10. Presumably, at that time, the city’s need for additional off-street parking to support the business community could replace the park-and-ride demand. Therefore, the city could, if the county agreed, replace the county as tenant.
To allow fixed payments over the 30 years, the lease was front loaded with three $329,000 pre-opening payments tied to progress points in the construction process. The last of the three pre-payments was tied to the opening date of the facility for park-and-ride use. Set to commence one year from the opening date, the county will pay Dally for 29 years at $255,000 per year. In addition, the county will pay Dally $45,000 per year, adjusted annually, for operations, maintenance and security.
Other terms in the lease obligated Dally to pay for one free bus pass for each of the apartment units for 10 years. Also, rent for 50 percent of the units is limited to a level affordable to households earning 80 percent of the countywide median income. In 2007 dollars, that equates to a $49,000 per year income, 2.4 member household paying $1,200 per month rent. Finally, Dally agreed to pay state prevailing wages for construction of the parking garage portion of the development.
Ed Walker is project manager with the King County DOT