In February 2019, Onni Group made their first real estate purchase on the Eastside, with the acquisition of a four-acre site in downtown Bellevue—currently home to a church and Barnes & Noble store—for $116 million. On Thursday, March 14th, the company provided the first set of publicly available images for a large-scale mixed-use project it plans for the area, which, according to Puget Sound Business Journal, will comprise “three 600-foot-tall towers totaling 1,289 residences, 896,000 square feet of office space, 317 hotel suites and 2,318 underground parking stalls.”
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As a recent Puget Sound Business Journal article put it, “The Eastside office market has FANGs.” However fitting, they aren’t referencing the region’s sharp teeth; they are talking about a group of tech titans: Facebook, Amazon, Netflix and Google.
Amazon left the tech community reeling in mid-February when they announced that they were pulling out of their plans to add a headquarter location in the Long Island City section of New York. Many have been asking, where will the 25,000 planned jobs for Long Island City go? The short answer seems to be a little bit of everywhere.
Seattle is a crucible of technological innovation. The intersection of computer/data science and biological/chemical sciences will lead to breakthrough in a number of industries, and the Emerald City will increasingly be known as a hub for these intersections of change. As we move into 2019, GeekWire polled six venture capitalists from the Pacific Northwest to offer their insight on what to expect in tech for 2019.
In January of 2018, I covered the opening of the first Amazon Go grocery store in Seattle, which drew a large crowd of people that were eager to try their hand at shopping in the cashierless grocery store. At the time, it was unclear what role Amazon Go would play in the brick-and-mortal consumer grocery store industry. Now that it’s been a year, let’s take a look at what’s changed.
Only January 11th, NVIDIA announced a new robotics research lab near Seattle’s University of Washington campus, which will be run by Dieter Fox, senior director of robotics research at NVIDIA and professor in the University’s Paul G. Allen School of Computer Science and Engineering. The purpose of the lab will be to complete breakthrough research in robots that are able to “perform complex manipulation tasks to safely work alongside humans” and ultimately transform a range of industries, from manufacturing to logistics, healthcare and more.
CES is the world’s largest gathering place for those who thrive on the business of consumer technologies. Earlier this month, attendees convened in Las Vegas for a week of innovation and breakthrough technologies.
I was recently holding an open house when a curious neighbor came into the home to check out the new improvements and ask about current market conditions. After showing her the home and added value/improvements made by the seller—and asking her to tell everyone she knew—I briefly explained that we are going through a market correction, which began in mid-May (like a light switch on May 10th), and touched on the probable causes. I went on to say that current market conditions seem to have stabilized: generally, sales have increased and inventory began decreasing around mid-October (I saw it October 18th). I summed it up quickly with, “I believe it’s a great time to buy.” She looked at me and said “yeah, but what would you say to your friend or a family member. How would you advise them?” I shrugged and smiled as I replied, “I just did.”
Smart home technology is rapidly advancing and ranges from a smart home assistant — such as Google Home or Amazon Alexa — to complex systems managing every aspect of a residence. While some homeowners make the assumption that adding smart home technology will increase their home’s value, Mansion Global warns that things aren’t quite so simple: “Your home’s smart technology could give you an edge over other sellers whose homes don’t have it, but it’s challenging to assign a dollar value to it, experts say.”
A flurry of news articles have come in the wake of the news that Amazon has officially selected two new HQ cities: one in Long Island City, New York, the other in Crystal City, Virginia. The question on many minds, is how the move will impact the new chosen cities and the company’s relationship to Seattle.