Sunset Area Redevelopment Plan

Sunset Areas 2015The Sunset Area Transformation Plan has guided the redevelopment and revitalization of the Sunset Terrace neighborhood in Renton. The plan identifies and guides reinvestment in the neighborhood, which is implemented, in part, by the Sunset Terrace Redevelopment Master Plan.

The strategy leverages public investments, which in turn, catalyze private investment. The result is the revitalization of a neighborhood characterized by distressed public World War II-era housing and car-oriented development into a compact and walkable mixed-use neighborhood with new residences close to shopping, services, and public transportation.

Since 2012, six affordable housing projects and three mixed-income projects have been finished or under construction in the Sunset Area.

The total investment so far is $150 million, with another $230 million projected for current or planned projects to be completed by the city, Renton Housing Authority, and for-profit developers in the next several years.

The efforts have won a VISION 2020 Award and three Governor’s Smart Communities Awards.

Creating The Plan

Task Force I Highland Task Force on Land Use and Zoning was convened to review a revised set of zoning amendments designed to stimulate redevelopment in the Sunset Area. The Task Force’s recommendation was adopted by City Council in 2007.

Task Force II This second Citizen task force was focused on identifying recommendations to implement the adopted vision for the Center Village in the Highlands area. These recommendations included the creation of a center or a third place for a community gather space. The recommendations from Task Force II were adopted by City Council in 2009.

Sunset Area Community Investment Strategy (2009) Based on the Highlands Task Force II recommendations, a Community Investment Strategy was commissioned to develop a plan for public investment by the City and its partners, Renton Housing Authority (RHA), Renton School District, and King County Library System (KCLS), to make significant public investment in their assets in the Sunset Community to catalyze private investment.

Sunset Area Planned Action EIS (2011) Partnered with RHA to develop a Planned Action to streamline SEPA environmental review permiting for development within the Sunset Area. This Planned Ac􀆟on incorporated the federal NEPA re-equipments to ensure RHA’s affordable housing developments could benefit from this work.

Sunset Area Community Needs Assessment In 2014 the City and its partners conducted a needs assessment to identify priority human services and housing needs in the area. This assessment provided an overall picture of community need for housing and human services within the Sunset Area and examines the gaps in existing services.

Sunset Terrace Redevelopment Master Plan (2015) Completed a Master Site Plan Review permit process to add predictability and streamline land use review for known development projects to be completed by RHA, KCLS, Private Development Partners, and the City. This Plan included the Sunset Neighborhood Park, replacement affordable housing for Renton Housing Authority, new King County Highlands Library building, privately developed market-rate housing, and realignment of the neighborhood’s internal streets creating a ring road around the new park.

Development Completed to Date

King County Library Systems Library 14,500 square foot Highlands Library located at NE 10th and Sunset Blvd. Library also abuts the new Sunset Lane loop road that surrounds Sunset Neighborhood Park. New Highlands Library replaces former 6,200 square foot Highlands Library building located at NE 12th St. That building is now occupied by the Sunset Neighborhood Center.

Meadow Crest Early Learning & Accessible Playground 72,000 square foot facility that includes the Renton School District’s Integrated Preschool Program, Head Start, and the Early Childhood Assistance Program. In a partnership with the City of Renton, the Meadow Crest Playground was constructed on the school district site and abutting city owned North Highlands Community Center. The Meadow Crest Playground is an inclusive playground for kids, families, and their caretakers. Its vibrant and colorful outdoor space features fun and challenges for people of all ages and abilities.

Sunset Neighborhood Center The Renton Housing Authority purchased the former Highland Library building located at 2902 NE 12th St from the City of Renton and with assistance from the City transformed the space into a new neighborhood multi-service center. Current and future partners providing service in the center include Health Point Clinic, Neighborhood House, Valley Services Behavioral Health Care, and St. Vincent de Paul Centro Rendu. The recent building renovation provides space for both physical and mental health services, dental, educational classes along with a large community meeting space.

Sunset Neighborhood Park Following the removal of World War II era Renton Housing Authority duplex units, the City realigned the internal street alignment within the Sunset Terrace neighborhood to form a ring road that provides the boundary of the recently completed 3.2-acre Sunset Neighborhood Park. The park provides playgrounds, plazas, public art installation, adult fitness area, pergolas, performance/open space lawn, rain gardens, restroom facilities, and loop walkways. The park’s unique playground equipment includes a 30-foot-high climbing structure that is the only structure of its type in the Pacific Northwest and just one of four in the United States.

Glennwood Avenue Townhomes Renton Housing Authority eight (8) unit townhome project providing relocation housing for the WWII era units removed as part of the redevelopment of the Sunset Terrace community. The development provides three (3) and (4) bedroom units with active and passive recreation/open space areas.

Kirkland Avenue Townhomes Renton Housing Authority 18-unit townhome project providing two (2) and three (3) bedroom units as relocation housing for the outdated WWII era affordable housing units.
Sunset Court Townhomes and Apartments – Renton Housing Authority 50-unit multi-family affordable housing development consisting of four (4) buildings providing 10 townhome units and 40 apartment units. The site was the former City owned Sunset Court Park that was swapped with the housing authority when developing the nearby Sunset Neighborhood Park on former Renton Housing Authority property.

Willowcrest Townhomes 12-unit affordable homeownership townhome development that partners Renton Housing Authority and Homestead Community Land Trust with funding assistance from the City of Renton. The first permanently affordable development of its size built with features that significantly reduce utilities costs and climate impacts. The three (3) and four (4) bedroom townhomes will achieve net zero energy usage through highly energy-efficient systems and construction and the use of solar panels for on-site energy generation.

Kirkland Avenue Duplex Market rate townhome project that developed four alley loaded townhomes. One of the first private redevelopments with high quality urban infill housing in the area.

Sunset Oaks 60-unit multi-family affordable housing development. The project includes studio, one (1), and two (2) bedroom units across the street from Sunset Neighborhood Park. The development surrounds a 3,000 square foot courtyard to accommodate the residents on-site open space needs.

Current Projects

Renton Housing Authority

Sunset Gardens The redevelopment of the Renton Housing Authority’s administrative office property into 76 affordable housing unit mixed use building with the Housing Authority’s offices on the ground floor. Housing would accommodate seniors, veterans, and chronically homeless individuals.

Private Investment

Sunset Terrace Market rate mixed use development including multi-family units and 2,100 square feet of commercial space located across from Sunset Neighborhood Park. The building also abuts and shares vehicle access to structured parking with the Highlands Library. The project exceeds the density limitations of the Center Village zoning district however the developer entered into a Density Transfer Agreement with the City to purchase the unused density from the Sunset Neighborhood Park.

Solera Master Plan Redevelopment of the former Hi-Lands Shopping Center 11-acre site with a walkable mixed-use development consisting of 686 mixed income dwelling units and 38,000 square feet of commercial space in four (4) blocks. Two (2) mixed use blocks would contain 275 affordable units and 315 market rate units with ground floor commercial and amenity space. Two (2) townhome blocks would provide 96 market rate fee simple townhomes.

Kidz Day Care Center Redevelopment of former car wash into a two (2) story 10,700 square foot children’s daycare facility at NE Sunset Blvd and NE 12th St.

Park 5 Apartments Redevelopment of a lower scale retail strip site located on NE Sunset Blvd and Harrington Ave NE into a 69-unit mixed use building with 3,700 square feet of ground floor commercial space.

28 Hundred Unit Lot Townhomes Redevelopment of former WWII era temporary housing into 11 unit lot townhome project located a NE 12th St. and Harrington Ave NE.

Next Steps

Continue to secure resources and partner with Renton Housing Authority on affordable housing development.

Sunset Boulevard re-design and construction to turn Sunset Boulevard into multi-model transportation corridor that provide improved access to the community and provide the necessary infrastructure to support existing and on-going development.

Support private investment in the community.

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