A lawn with concrete steps ringed by trees with the shiny new towers of Downtown Bellevue rising above in the background.
The skyline is growing around Bellevue Downtown Park with light rail now a 15-minute walk to the east. (The Urbanist)

As Sound Transit prepares to launch the East Link Starter Line on April 27, The Urbanist will go station-by-station to look at how the neighborhoods have been changing and preparing for light rail’s arrival with transit-oriented development (TOD) via our “East Link TOD” series. Back in 2022, we warned that some neighborhoods along East Link were squandering their TOD opportunities, but there are a few success stories, too. Let’s start our journey along the 2 Line (as East Link will be called) in Downtown Bellevue, which certainly has the most highrise development of the bunch.

When we last checked in on Downtown Bellevue development in July 2022, we totaled up more than 13,100 new residential units, at least 16 million square feet of commercial space, over 2,000 hotel rooms, and more than 43,300 parking spaces added since 2018 or set to be added with projects under construction or in development. 

Downtown Bellevue Light Rail Tunnel
The Downtown Bellevue Tunnel from the East Main station (The Urbanist)

These figures have been shaken up with craters in return to office, the passage of time, and an ever-present housing crunch. It’s important to note the squishiness of early permits and the sheer scale of some of the mega-project proposals. Some projects have since stalled or remade themselves. New ones have emerged, too. They’ve all shifted in the direction of housing. The 16 million square feet in commercial space we previously discussed was predominantly office space. That figure has certainly diminished. 

Projects shift with pandemic impacts

One million plus square feet of office space has alone been struck to the history books with a reset of the massive Cloudvue project. The project is departing from the initial vision of two office towers plus one residential tower to a new plan with three residential towers. Commercial uses are still planned with around 100,000 square feet of retail with 40,000 of it currently planned to be a grocery store. The developer is abandoning a planned nearly 1.3 million square feet of office to move forward instead with a grand total of 1,714 residential units, up from the 538 when we last reported on the project. 

A rending of Cloudvue imposed on a photo shot of Bellevue
Cloudvue’s original concept rendering (Courtesy of ZGF Architects)

Another major housing shift has occurred with the final phase of the Washington Square project, which we last reported as a plan for a hotel and an office tower. An update this year now shows plans for a 27-story, 400-unit mixed-use multifamily project and a nine-story office tower with 129,000 square feet of office and up to 10,000 square feet of other commercial space. 

Activity around three condo towers seem to be taking place at 102 Bellevue, a consolidated version of 30 and 44 Bellevue that first submitted applications way back in 2018 and 2019. The plan calls for 455 homes and 22,000 square feet of commercial space. Since 2022, another big update has come: the Pacific Regent Bellevue Senior Living expansion at 919 109th, which is planning for a two-phase development with phase one being a eight-story, 200 unit apartment building and phase two a 18-story tower. 

A rendering of the 102 Bellevue project with the surrounding buildings shown too
The 102 Bellevue proposal alongside the One88 project on the same block (Courtesy of Amanat Architect)

A parking shake up

Another adjustment seen in these projects are some big shifts in proposed parking, though Cloudvue is pulling most of the weight by now proposing 1,428 stalls. It’s still a huge number, but down 1,059 parking stalls from what we last saw. Park Row by BOSA is proposing 217 stalls, down 60 stalls, and North of Main’s latest plans see a reduction of 13 stalls. 

This is offset by some new parking figures that we have since learned about. The Washington Square update comes with 611 proposed stalls, the 102 Bellevue is proposing 811, and the Pacific Regent expansion is proposing 234 stalls in phase one. At the time of writing of the Bellevue parking obsession climate arson piece, author Shaun Kuo had not accounted for parking in these projects.

Parking is not too hard to come by in Bellevue. This parking access alley next to Elements Apartments is a few block north of Downtown Bellevue Station. (The Urbanist)

If all the projects we reported on in 2022 were still live, the 43,000 plus parking stalls planned would have to be revised upwards. This massive number emerges from the scale of zoned capacity of downtown Bellevue and parking ratios that may otherwise seem reasonable in more suburban and less transit-rich settings. With the arrival of its own light rail line, Bellevue has one foot squarely in the big city camp, but the high parking ratios suggest one foot is still planted in car-oriented suburbia.

Construction updates, starts and stops

Lastly, let’s capture the changes on the ground since the last time we covered downtown Bellevue.


  • 930 109th Avenue NE/GIS Plaza
    • Six-story, 16-unit midrise with 1,785 square feet of office, 535 square feet of ground floor retail, and 19 parking spaces.
  • 555 108th Avenue NE/555 Tower or Sonic*
    • 42-story tower with around 695,610 square feet of office space, a 2-story pavilion with 24,675 square feet of active space (ground floor commercial space like retail or restaurant usage), and 967 parking spaces.
    • Amazon announced that they would complete the interior of the rest in the remaining 22 floors in April.
  • 10845 Main St
    • Two-story office building.
      • 10777 Main St/Surrey on Main
        • Six-story midrise with 125 apartments, 1,506 square feet of retail space, and 146 parking stalls.
  • 117 106th Ave NE/West Main
    • 16, 17, and 17-story towers with a combined 881,070 square feet of office space, 28,210 square feet of ground floor active uses, and 2,194 parking spaces.
    • West 2 and 3 are also reportedly in a “shell” state with interiors unfinished, one of many Amazon pauses.
  • Two shiny glass tower boxes with parking lot in foreground.
  • A white five-story building with an upper-level setback.

Almost done

  • 788 106th Avenue NE – The Artise
    • 25-story tower with 509,400 square feet of office space, 7,500 square feet of retail space, and 5.5 levels of below grade parking for 927 parking spaces.
    • Amazon is also keeping this building in a “shell” state from what we know now.
  • 10666 NE 8th Street/The Eight
    • 25-story tower with 523,000 square feet of office space, 12,650 square feet of active space, and 883 parking spaces.
  • 11100 Main Street/The Watermark at Bellevue
    • 22-story tower and seven-story midrise with 334 units for senior living, 7,500 square feet of active space, and 236 parking spaces between the two of them.
  • The Artise with its exterior completed
  • A nearly complete watermark senior living center
  • The Eight nearly done

Now under construction

  • 320 106th Avenue NE/Four 106 Phase One
    • 17-story tower with 368,000 square feet of office space, 7,570 square feet of retail space, and 781 parking spaces.
  • 600 108th Avenue NE/Bellevue 600 Phase One
    • 45-story tower with 839,500 square feet of office space, 11,680 of active uses, and over 800 parking spaces. Amazon is also keeping this building in a “shell” state from what we know now.
  • Construction with a crane rising around a elevator shaft as steel framing begin to take shape around.
  • Tower under construction with two crane hovering.

Office pauses and casualties

  • 222 112th Avenue Northeast
    • In March, DJC reported that the office tower proposal at 200 108th Ave NE had its plug pulled. That’s another 315,000 square feet of office space, 2,900 square feet of active space, and 550 parking spaces chipped off.
  • Bellevue 600 Phase Two
    • 31-story tower with 764,400 square feet of office space, 8,000 square feet of retail and exhibition uses, and around 700 parking spaces.
    • Another Amazon project that has been paused. Permits indicate that the parking garage here will be lidded.

So where’s downtown Bellevue now and where’s it going?

If all the projects in Downtown Bellevue’s Major Project List manage to survive and be built and all of those paused interior build outs remain entirely office use, the changes discussed won’t be that substantial. Commercial space, predominantly office, that’s been built since 2018, under construction, or in permitting is down around 1.5 million square feet or at around 14.5 million commercial square feet. Residential units are up by over 2200, at around 15,300. Parking stalls stubbornly remain around 43,000. So the main changes are commercial development is down about 9% and homes are up 17%.

  • Wilburton sees the biggest jump in housing capacity under the City's 2044 preferred growth plan, followed by BelRed and Crossroads. Downtown sees a modest increase in capacity, since it already included the most capacity of the areas.
  • The City's preferred alternative for the comp plan would actually decrease jobs capacity in Downtown Bellevue to increase the emphasis on housing.

Going forward, this direction may actually be what Bellevue is intending for the future of its downtown. In the City’s preferred alternative for the comprehensive plan update that Bellevue released, downtown Bellevue would see a slight increase in housing capacity but a major downsizing in job capacity. If implemented correctly, we should continue to see the ratio of new office to housing in downtown move in the direction of housing. This paves the way for a downtown Bellevue whose vibrancy depends less on the ebb and flow of office commuters and more on full-time residents.

Article Author

The Urbanist staff occasionally teams up to cover breaking news or tackle large projects. See more about our team on the staff page.