I am not one who toots his own horn, but the Palouse is amazingly lucky to have me. I use my column to impart wisdom, truth, and knowledge. My fans frequently embrace my ability to explain complex and polarizing issues. They have complete faith I will guide them to righteousness. Today, I will protect property rights while nixing the “it’s out of place” attitude of the naysayers.
Some Pullman residents have found another development to oppose. This development is being called Elevate Student Housing. As proposed, this apartment complex will be big and tall.
A five-acre lot on Johnson Avenue, just off Bishop Boulevard, is the proposed location for the apartment complex. This location has a large rocky hillside that would unlikely be used for building without this ambitious project. The tallest portion of the building is 104 feet. It would be the eighth-tallest building in Pullman. This building would have a multi-story parking garage and more than a half-dozen floors of apartment units.
This complex would have just under 300 apartments with just under 700 bedrooms. It would have a courtyard that includes a swimming pool.
Just for an idea of the size of this project, the Emerald Downs apartment complex near the intersection of Valley Road and Brandi Way has 240 units. There are dozens of other apartment complexes similar in size to Emerald Downs located on Valley Road, Merman Drive, Terre View Drive, Northwood Drive, and Westwood Drive. Due to the number of huge apartment complexes in that portion of town, students commonly refer to it is as “Apartmentland.” I bet if this project was going to be built in Apartmentland, then I wouldn’t be writing about it today.
Near Bishop Boulevard and Johnson Avenue there have been a number of apartment buildings that have been constructed. The older ones have a large number of buildings each housing several apartment units. The newer apartment complexes are single, large buildings filled with apartments units. Building more apartments in this general area is not out of place.
At the Elevate Student Housing apartment complex, any resident with a northern view may look out the window and see up to six of the tallest buildings in Pullman. Each of these tall buildings are within a quarter-mile or so. Again, it is not out of place.
When the new Starbucks was built on Bishop Boulevard, people asked why “we” are building another Starbucks. “We” should be building a (insert the name of a different coffee vendor). Those people fail to understand it isn’t a “we” situation. A person or company buys land and then plans how the land will be used. I have explained to others if they want something else built, they should buy the land and put up the capital to start the new business. Until then, they don’t get to choose what business is opened.
A big feature I like about the Elevate project is the way it will incorporate the hillside in the complex. Drive down Grand Avenue and look at all the land that isn’t used due to the steep hillsides. It is such a huge waste of space. I hope that in the future other builders follow suit.
I think the intersection at Johnson Avenue and Bishop Boulevard will need some consideration. Unless a second road is constructed which would connect to the Pullman-Moscow Highway all the traffic will empty to Bishop. It is a lot of additional traffic which will utilize that intersection. The intersection currently has a stop sign and it may need a different traffic control device. Maybe if a European-style roundabout was constructed the left-wingers would get behind the project.
Ultimately the developers, if they follow the permitting process as outlined by the city, should not have to battle citizens who like to bellyache. To the developers of the Elevate project, I say “Build, baby, build.”
Scotty Anderson is a computer programmer who enjoys serving the community through various community-oriented service jobs.