A Texas doughnut is coming to Spokane, apparently for the first time.
This isn’t a Southern-fried breakfast treat, however, but a somewhat misleadingly named housing-development concept popularized in the Lone Star State.
At the center of a Texas doughnut is not a hole but a parking garage. Wrapped around it is an apartment building, whose tenants will have direct access to the cars parked on the same floor where they live.
Construction of the first such building in the region should begin early next year on the long-undeveloped KXLY site on South Regal Street, according to Carl Guenzel, a broker with the commercial real estate company Kiemle & Hagood and a partner in the site’s development. Once it’s complete, likely in 2023, work on a second building will begin.
Combined, the two doughnuts will include 306 one-bedroom, two-bedroom and studio apartments as well as rooftop decks.
The buildings will anchor a mixed-use development that will gradually fill in the 15-acre site.
Developers plan to construct along Regal Street four separate buildings for commercial tenants, which Guenzel expects to include a restaurant and a brew pub, and to build both private and public outdoor spaces.
The private space, he said, will likely include a pickleball court and areas for grilling. The public space will include pedestrian paths that will pass between the new buildings and a new shared-use path along the site’s northern edge, running between the development and the adjacent Southeast Sports Complex.
In exchange for access to the intersection of Regal and the Palouse Highway through the complex’s property, the KXLY site’s developers are being required by the city to build a number of amenities for the complex, including parking, a restroom facility and a new soccer field, which is complete.
The development is also on the hook to add a midblock crossing on Regal Street. That will connect the KXLY site to the Regal Plaza shopping center that includes Target.
The exact location and design of that crossing is to be determined, though the city’s traffic engineering department has been analyzing the options, according to the Design Review Board packet for the recent meeting at which the project was discussed.
Guenzel said the development’s design is meant to “have an urbanish feel” without being urban – and without being downtown.
He said he imagines it will appeal, in part, to older people who are looking to downsize from the home they live in without leaving the neighborhood.
But the apartments, like the approximately $75 million development itself, won’t be cheap, Guenzel said.
Construction of each wrapped apartment building is slated to cost $30 million, and Guenzel said a 700-square-foot one-bedroom, one-bathroom apartment will cost about $1.80-$1.90 per square foot per month. That’s about $1,300 in rent.
Plans to develop the site have been underway since 2007 and have changed many times in the years since. While Guenzel said he and his partners plan to seek building permits in January and break ground in the spring, the “phased approach” to building out the site will allow some flexibility should things change again.
What is certain is that the addition of more than 300 new residents and their cars will add to traffic on an already busy Regal Street. The development will funnel cars in and out at the intersection of Regal and Palouse Highway, as does the Southeast Sports Complex.
But Summer Beers, vice chair of the Southgate Neighborhood Council, said she has “no major concerns” about the project and is unperturbed by the impending addition to the area.
“Regal is already at capacity,” Beers said, “so I think as long as we can include some other ways to get around in that area – some routes that bikes can take and alleviate traffic – that will definitely help.”
Local journalism is essential.
Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.
Subscribe to the Coronavirus newsletter
Get the day’s latest Coronavirus news delivered to your inbox by subscribing to our newsletter.