The City of Olympia has ended an agreement with Romano Capital to develop a 10-acre property at 3900 Boulevard Road. However, the City remains committed to seeing the property developed to help achieve key housing objectives.
Entered into last July, the agreement with Romano Capital involved the building of multi-family units and townhomes, the majority of which were to be affordable to middle-income working families. The development would have also brought a neighborhood-commercial element to Boulevard Road. An initial phase of the process called for the developer to engage in community outreach about the development plans.
After the agreement was signed, Romano Capital initiated their due diligence and did not feel confident that they could achieve the project as proposed. The inability to move forward with the project as proposed prompted the City to end the agreement.
Despite the fact that the deal with Romano Capital did not materialize, the City will maintain its commitment to meeting housing needs by developing the 10 acres. Before finding a new developer, the City will explore and assess potential next steps with the goal of addressing those housing needs and enhancing the community.
“It is unfortunate, as I think that Romano had a great concept that aligned with the City’s Comprehensive Plan, but it’s not uncommon that complex real-estate deals hit bumps in the road and fail to come together. We’ll continue to move the effort forward and find the right fit for this project,” said Mike Reid, the City’s economic development director.
The 10 acres at 3900 Boulevard Road are part of the land the City purchased in 2016 to protect LBA Woods. They border but do not include the woods. Prior to 2016, the LBA Woods were slated for a major housing development. Responding to community pleas, the City purchased 146 acres, which included the woods and additional land. While laying out its plans to purchase the acreage, the City established the 10 acres on Boulevard Road as a site to build housing. Together, the saving of the woods and the development of the 10 acres represented a vision of a sustainable, thriving community that could be affordable for middle-income working families.
It is that vision the City remains committed to realizing as it looks ahead on the plans to develop the property. For more information on the Boulevard Road project, visit www.olympiawa.gov/boulevard.
The above was provided by the City of Olympia.
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