Developer plans to replace old  house on 4th Avenue E, Olympia, putting in commercial space


The Olympia Site Plan Review Committee heard a proposal for a planned project to transform an old house into two commercial establishment spaces at 1711 4th Avenue E.

At the committee meeting on Wednesday, March 20, project applicant Dave Sweet, general contractor of Coast Salish, gave an overview of the plan that includes demolishing the existing residential home. He said the structure was no longer livable and too costly to repair.

According to Sweet, the old house has been converted into an office space in the past. The plan is to remove the existing structure that is no longer occupied and build a new 2,000-square-foot building.

The new building would have two commercial spaces.

One unit will house a hair salon business to be brought over by the property's current owner. The other unit will be left as a shell space for a future tenant. Sweet mentioned potential uses, including another establishment like a nail salon or chiropractic office.

Olympia associate planner Jackson Ewing said the site is in a High-Density Corridor zone, allowing for various commercial uses, such as the salon the developer is proposing.

According to Ewing, the project will likely trigger the land use review process because it involves demolishing an existing building and constructing a new one with new uses.

Ewing noted that the developer needs to clarify how far back from the right-of-way on 4th Avenue the proposed building would be situated. He informed the applicant of a code requirement for properties in the HDC-1 zone with a 0-10 feet setback from the front property line/right-of-way.

Another requirement mentioned is building design. Ewing noted that HDC-1 zone standards require any new building construction to follow one of three allowed historic architectural styles – craftsman, vernacular, or Tudor – and meet the specific design standards for whichever style it follows.

Deputy Building official Jeff Finch of Community Planning and Development (CP&D) noted that the project will be reviewed under the newly updated 2021 International Building Code, which the Olympia City Council recently adopted.

Finch said the developer must provide accessible routes and amenities. Structural plans need to be stamped by the Washington State Engineer.

Electric vehicle (EV) standards are applied as well. In this project, Finch said 30% of the total parking will have to be established to support EV charging - 10% have EV charges installed, 10% are EV-ready, and 10% have to be EV capable.


4 comments on this item Please log in to comment by clicking here

  • AugieH

    A hair salon and a nail salon. Yeah, we need more of those.

    Friday, March 22 Report this

  • AugieH

    A hair salon and a nail salon. Yeah, we need more of those.

    Friday, March 22 Report this

  • Southsoundguy

    Angie, there isn’t anyone else doing anything around here.

    The EV standards are absurd.

    Saturday, March 23 Report this

  • JulesJames

    At least there aren't bikes-are-cars parking requirements as well as EV requirements.

    Monday, March 25 Report this