Leaks dampen future for Seattle condo owners

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by Gary Chittim / KING 5 News

KREM.com

Posted on August 24, 2013 at 7:19 AM

SEATTLE, Wash. -- A complex of high-priced downtown Seattle towers is about to begin several months of intense repairs.

It was one of the first clusters of a new wave of residential towers to scrape the Seattle sky. When 2200 Westlake was announced in 2002 it was touted as the gateway to South Lake Union.

The shiny buildings house an upscale Whole Foods grocery, the Pan Pacific Hotel and scores of condos.

Tenants started reporting minor and major water problems shortly after the complex opened. At least two major leaking events have occurred. All the problems are blamed on construction defects.

This week homeowner groups announced there will be very extensive and expensive repairs.

Residents were told a $20 million settlement has been reached to make the repairs that will require residents in each tower to live several months behind protective plastic sheeting while the work is done. Sealants, flashings, vents and other rainwater protection materials will be repaired or replaced.

Homeowners were told companies will begin removing plants and other landscaping Monday. By early next week scaffolding will begin to go up around their towers.

The owners of most of the Vulcan complex will not confirm the deal but issued this statement:
We have been working cooperatively with the Residential Association and general contractor (Turner) for approximately two years to identify potential areas where the 2200 Westlake buildings can be improved and repaired. We have come to an amicable agreement with all parties and will now focus on addressing our collective findings. As a continued owner of a large portion of 2200 Westlake, we have a long-term investment in the asset and look forward to working with our partners to better the project. Due to confidentiality associated with the settlement agreement, we cannot provide any further details.

We asked Turner Construction, which built the complex, to confirm the $20 million settlement and received this response:
The development team has reached an agreement on all issues. The parties have agreed to keep the terms confidential. We continue to move forward with Vulcan on additional projects in Seattle.

Chris McFadden
Turner Construction Company


Whole foods also declined to comment saying Vulcan owns the building.

Resident Cory Streater did speak with us and said he was told to prepare for eight to 10 months of repairs that involve the loss of window views and use of decks.

Members of the 2200 Westlake Residential Association told King 5 the complex has suffered ongoing leaking problems and now they will all be suffering through the repairs.

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