Keller Williams Greater Seattle

Volta takes a hiatus?

Last week the Washington State Department of Financial Institutions closed Washington First International Bank, which was the commercial lender on the Volta Condominium. The FDIC was named as receiver and immediately sold the failed bank to East West Bank of Pasadena, which acquired $501 million of Washington First’s $520 million in assets.

For now, it appears funds to complete the long overdue project is in limbo. Fortunately, East West Bank, with $20 Billion in assets, is in a far more stable capacity to finish the project if they so choose.

The project, which was previously known as The Alex, was originally scheduled for completion back in September 2008. Stay tuned. I’m sure we’ll be hearing more.

Updated 1/27/11: The project in its current form is done. A Trustee’s auction has been scheduled for March 18, 2011. The developer defaulted on a $1,488,325.

Update 9/13/2011: The project, which had been foreclosed, was recently purchased by a New Jersey real estate investment company. I suspect they will complete the project as apartments in the near term.

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About the Author: Ben Kakimoto is a condo marketing specialist and publisher of The Seattle Condo Blog. Ben's focus is urban residential properties in Seattle's metropolitan core. Contact Ben to learn more about the Seattle condo and loft real estate market. Find Ben on Google+, Twitter and Facebook. .

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  1. michael norquest says:

    Good Morning Ben,
    Well, your blog regarding the former Alex Condominium project answered my question; so what is up with this site? I walked by several days ago and what looked like a project that had been mothballed many months ago
    now looked forlorn and abandoned; not well secured and unless someone steps up to the plate and closes up the building from the oncoming winter rains, a building that might have some water related structural problems.
    If I remember correctly, from a related article in “The Seattle Times” of last year, the owner of the property also held title to the adjoining building which housed the long established home furnishings store called Egberts. I believe
    the article was more about the potential legal problems with the tenants that lived in the apartments above Egberts as they seemed to be part of a “property in common” lease; not quite a traditonal co-op ownership plan but much more problematic than a standard lease agreement between those tenants and the new owner. I wouldn’t know if that particular individual was still involved with the project; that name change to Volta would probably indicate that he signed off and is no longer in the picture.
    When I walked by the place the first thing I thought of was this is a property that looks like it could be looted or set up as a squat by some group of homeless people. I was surprised not to see better security.

    Michael N.

  2. VG says:

    I spent some time checking out the Volta site today, and they appear to have just walked off the job some months ago and never returned. There are missing windows, open windows and doors everywhere – I counted at least a dozen. Construction materials and building systems are piled around the site haphazardly.

    The first good spring rain we get in September and that building is going to start going downhill very quickly, if it hasn’t already. The interior drywall is complete in most of it, and that’s usually the first thing to go when moisture invades.

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