Skanska USA Commercial Development Inc. today announced it will break ground on 400 Fairview alongside its first major tenant—global retailer and lifestyle brand, Tommy Bahama.
“We’re thrilled to celebrate this milestone with Tommy Bahama,” said Skanska Commercial Development Executive Vice President, Lisa Picard. “Our goal is to make Seattle-based companies highly competitive in world markets. Tommy Bahama, one of the first office tenants in South Lake Union, has long understood the dynamics of a diverse neighborhood and we’re excited to provide their new hub for continued growth and creativity at 400 Fairview."
Skanska is the first developer to break ground in South Lake Union since the Seattle City Council passed a rezone in the spring. Plans for 400 Fairview were first revealed in in January 2012—a 13-story tower with 320,000 SF of office space and 17,000 square feet of ground floor retail, targeting LEED® Gold certification. The building is located on Fairview Avenue, a major north-south corridor between Harrison and Republican Streets, in the heart of South Lake Union
Tommy Bahama will move from its current headquarters on Westlake into 120,000 SF at 400 Fairview in 2015.
“Tommy Bahama has been part of the fabric of the South Lake Union neighborhood since 2005.” said Terry Pillow, CEO of Tommy Bahama. “What brought us here then, the first hints of the vibrant and growing community it has become, keeps us here now as we move to our new 400 Fairview address. We believe Tommy Bahama will continue to thrive and grow in this young, urban and eclectic neighborhood and 400 Fairview will be the perfect place for us to continue to Make Life One Long Weekend.”
Skanska teamed with SkB Architects to design 400 Fairview from the inside out, with a focus on the success of the businesses within, as well as the overall human experience. Core to this design are flexible, open floor plans fostering greater team interactions, ample natural daylight from a side loaded core, and outdoor accessibility with decks on the 4th, 13th and 14th floors offering exceptional views of the Olympics, water and urban Seattle. At the ground floor, the experience is focused on small-scaled local retailers in a high volume euro-styled hall.
Skanska is also the first developer to purchase density credits under an innovative program that will transfer the development rights for 90,000 acres of protected Snoqualmie forestlands to the 400 Fairview project. The Transfer of Development Rights (TDR) program was enacted last month by King County and Seattle.
“This landmark agreement between the County and City will help us achieve our shared strategy of concentrating new growth into areas like South Lake Union, which is already prepared with such urban infrastructure as sidewalks and sewers, while protecting rural farms that supply farmers markets, restaurants, and retailers in the city with fresh, locally-grown food,” said King County Executive Dow Constantine.
King County will apply all the proceeds from the transfer of forest development rights toward the protection of local farmlands.
400 Fairview is Skanska’s second commercial development to break ground in Seattle. The groundbreaking event will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 16 at 2:00 pm on the south side of the site at Harrison Street. Its first development, Stone34, is scheduled to complete in Q2 2014 and will become Brooks Sports’ new headquarters. Skanska is also preparing to break ground this quarter on Alley 111, a 260-unit mixed-use multifamily project in downtown Bellevue.