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The board of directors for the Committee for the Seattle Commons has voted to try to get the measure on the ballot again next year. City voters on Sept. 19 rejected the $312 million Commons plan - a proposed 60-acre park at the south end of Lake Union and a 500-acre redevelopment of the surrounding low-key neighborhood of light industry and low-income housing.
The Tri-Cities posted the worst decline in home prices in the nation in the third quarter, according to the National Association of Realtors. As recently as late 1993, the TriCities was rated as the hottest housing market in the nation. The free-fall there contrasts with a national market, where lower mortgage rates sparked demand and pushed home prices up in most cities in the third quarter.
Plans are being completed by city engineers to improve Magnesium Road between Division and Dakota streets. The project involves widening the the half-mile-long stretch of Magnesium to 44 feet. Sidewalks and wheelchair ramps would be added and on-street parking removed in favor of bike lanes. Ken Brown, a design engineer for the city, said there are single-family homes along that stretch of Magnesium, but only side and back yards front the road.
The Kootenai County home sales market fell off its pace in October, ending a surprising rebound felt through August and September. Home sales dropped 5 percent compared with the number of sales last October, according to the Coeur d'Alene Multiple Listing Service.
Two years ago, Pam Madson and Nancy Fisher had little more than a prayer of getting a new house. Last week, with a prayer, the two single mothers were handed the fresh-cut keys to their new homes. Madson and Fisher had their prayers answered through the efforts of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, a dozen big-hearted construction companies and Habitat for Humanity.
Talk about parity. July housing sales in Spokane County were exactly on par with those of July 1994. In both months, 462 homes were sold. The only difference between the months was a 2.5 percent increase in price. The average price for a home sold in July 1995 was $114,500, up from $111,702 in 1994.
Low mortgage rates helped push sales of previously owned homes in July to the highest level in more than a year as the housing industry continued to rebound from a winter slump. It was the third straight monthly advance. Except for a dip in the Midwest, sales were up in every region, including a double-digit gain in the West.
An apartment management company accused of rent-gouging dropped a plan Wednesday that would have forced residents either to pay $3,000 a month rent during the Olympics or be evicted. Instead, tenants can either stay through the Games at their 1995 rents or volunteer to sublease their apartments to Olympic visitors and earn a cut of the higher rate, Intown Properties Inc. said in a statement. Rents at most Intown apartments are between $400 and $500 a month.
1. Rapid growth With prices as low as $69,000, the houses at Harmony Place, each build in about 13 days, are afilling a need for affordable housing in the area. Photo by Craig Buck/The Spokesman-Review 2. Tight scheduling and daily lists are keys to quick construction.
1. Davie Weinert has a large new window in his basement room, thanks to a federally funded home rehabilitation program administered by the city. Photo by Dan Pelle/The Spokesman-Review 2. Julie Roberts has used the single-family home rehab program to borrow $18,000 for improvements to her East Courtland home. Photo by Dan Pelle/The Spokesman-Review
A proposed 55-acre subdivision near Garwood was rejected by Kootenai County commissioners Wednesday because the developers wanted to keep a private airstrip open as part of the project. Commissioners were willing to change Ranch Aero's zoning from light industrial to rural. They also favor subdividing the acreage, located west of U.S. Highway 95 and south of Garwood, into 11 lots.
FOR THE RECORD CORRECTION: The number of homes sold in Spokane County from January to June 1995 is 2,082. In the same period last year, 2,859 homes were sold. A graphic in Tuesday's business section stated otherwise. Correction published on July 13, 1995.
The Kootenai County home sales market continues its decline from 1994's record pace. Sales dropped 16 percent in June compared to last year. At the halfway point of 1995, the market is off 15 percent. Realtors actually are welcoming what they consider a return to "sustainable growth" in the home market.
Claiming the city unlawfully blocked their controversial apartment project, Mission Springs developers filed a lawsuit against Spokane and the City Council in Superior Court on Monday. "We feel the City Council has violated their responsibilities," said John Clardy, the project's manager. "Their action is more political than legal. We plan to protect our rights."
Sales of new homes in May posted the steepest advance in more than three years, lessening the possibility the Federal Reserve will lower interest rates next week. In a separate report Thursday, the Labor Department said the number of Americans filing firsttime claims for unemployment benefits unexpectedly plunged by 28,000 last week, the biggest drop in nearly a year.
The lowest mortgage rates in more than a year pulled prospective home buyers back into the market in May. Existing home sales rebounded by 4.7 percent from the lowest level in nearly three years. "Rates have come down significantly," noted economist David Lereah of the Mortgage Bankers Association, who said rising mortgage applications hinted at improved sales in June as well. "I think we've hit bottom and are on our way back up." May sales totaled a seasonally adjusted 3.55 million annual rate, the National Association of Realtors reported Monday. That was up from 3.39 million in April, when they dropped 6.4 percent to the lowest level since a 3.36 million rate in June 1992.
Larry Barcellos, right, and his son, Larry Barcellos Jr., built the $1.75 million home that will be on display for the Showcase of Homes. Photo by Dan McComb/The Spokesman-Review
Emotional ties can bind - and blind - when it's time to sell your home. For many people, especially those with custom-built homes or families, letting go of a property packed with memories can be difficult.
1. Architect Glen Cloninger, left, and builder Dave Mark hope to recreate the mood of Spokane's distinguished old neighborhoods. Photo by Colin Mulvany/The Spokesman-Review 2. Garages in Grapetree are tucked out of sight on the sides of houses. 3. Playful chimneys epitomize Cloninger's attention to detail.
Spokane has no choice but to make room for granny. A state board ruled Tuesday the city must let homeowners build small apartments - commonly known as granny flats - in single-family neighborhoods.