Press Release: Imagine Housing and Red Vines 1 Break Ground on New Affordable Housing for Seniors


Kirkland – On September 9, 2016, Kirkland-based nonprofits Imagine Housing and Red Vines 1 will break ground on a new community in Kirkland.  The nonprofit partners have been building supportive affordable housing in the area for 29 years. Athene, located in the Totem Lake neighborhood next to Imagine Housing’s existing Francis Village, will provide 91 new studio, 1- and 2-bedroom apartments for seniors earning up to 60% of area median income.  Twenty apartments will be reserved for seniors experiencing homelessness.

With construction underway, Athene plans to begin leasing in the spring of 2017.  The sustainably built community will feature attractive and inviting community spaces; free common area wi-fi; and easy access to Eastside shopping, services, and transportation.  On-site supportive services will enhance health, wellness, and community engagement. The new community will help serve the many seniors who, despite living and working in the community for years, can no longer afford Eastside rents.

“I’m on a fixed income – social security,” said one local senior who is in search of affordable housing. “That doesn’t really match a person’s living needs.” She shared that her current rent is nearly 90% of her social security check, due to rising rents that outpace increases in social security payments.

Community members joining Imagine Housing and Red Vines 1 to celebrate Athene’s groundbreaking include King County Executive Dow Constantine, King County Councilmember Claudia Balducci, and Kirkland Mayor Amy Walen; event sponsors JP Morgan Chase Community Investment Banking and Raymond James Tax Credit Funds, Inc.; and Ankrom Moisan Architects and Venture General Contracting LLC.

“We are proud to partner with supporters and experts who share an understanding that building quality, affordable housing strengthens the Eastside and allows all members to thrive,” said Chris Jowell, Executive Director of Imagine Housing and Red Vines 1. “We look forward to opening Athene to provide more of our senior neighbors the opportunity for quality housing in their chosen community.”

Funding for the development of Athene is provided by: JP Morgan Chase Community Investment Banking, Raymond James Tax Credit Funds, Inc., Washington State Department of Commerce, King County, Washington Community Reinvestment Association, Washington State Housing Finance Commission, Impact Capital, and King County Housing Authority. Funding is also provided by the Eastside Housing Trust Fund, administered by A Regional Coalition for Housing with funding from the cities of Bellevue, Clyde Hill, Hunts Point, Issaquah, Kenmore, Kirkland, Medina, Mercer Island, Newcastle, Redmond, Sammamish, Woodinville, and Yarrow Point.

For more information:


Imagine Housing empowers individuals and families, supports diversity and strengthens communities by developing permanent affordable rental housing and providing supportive services.  Since 1987, Imagine Housing has built affordable apartment communities so that, regardless of income, individuals and families in East King County have stable housing and strong support in diverse communities that empower success and foster a high quality of life.  For more information on Imagine Housing and its services, call 425.576.5190.

Velocity’s Green Roof

Recently, Velocity, Imagine Housing’s newest property, was featured for its living roof.  Read more about this green feature below or visit the original story here.

Growing Pride on a Roof Top at Velocity Apartment Community, Kirkland With LiveRoof Green Roof.

With a focus on forward moving healthy, sustainable lifestyles, the Velocity apartment community installs LiveRoof rooftop garden to the delight of community residents.

LiveRoof Living Roof at Velocity Apartment

KIRKLAND, Washington (PRWEB) May 12, 2015

To Imagine Housing, ‘”Velocity” isn’t just a trendy name for their new apartment community but an embodiment of the concept of moving forward. Velocity, and its neighbor Kirkland Crossing developed by Polygon NW, are located at the South Kirkland Park and Ride, just blocks from Lake Washington Boulevard. The new community was designed with the residents and environment in mind by using technology to incorporate interaction, health and sustainability.

“Our vision for Velocity was to create a living, moving community for the area’s low income families to take an active role in their health as well as community sustainability,” said Sibyl Glasby, Director of Housing Development for Imagine Housing. “The living green roof is a sustainable green feature that also provides a beautiful outdoor space for our residents.”

Imagine Housing chose the LiveRoof® Hybrid Green Roof System for their 6,140-square foot living garden that includes walking paths, seating and a gas BBQ. The vegetative roof provides significant benefits to the environment including reducing water run-off and turbidity into the storm water system. The green roof was designed by Fazio Associates Landscape Architect and installed by Greening America. Using drought-tolerant native and adaptive plants and locally-sourced engineered soil, the modular living roof was grown to full maturity by GreenFeathers, Inc. of Cornelius, OR.

“We are pleased to have participated in this important housing community,” said Grace Dinsdale, founder and president, Blooming Nursery and GreenFeathers. “We provided fully-mature native plants grown in locally-sourced engineered soil for the Velocity living roof. Not only did this provide a beautiful, lush garden for residents to enjoy immediately, it also contributes to the sustainability of Velocity’s site.”

Velocity offers onsite parking, ready access to transportation, bicycle storage and repair station, a vibrant community area/library with a coffee house feel, a fully-equipped exercise center, and a roof top garden with walking paths, seating and a gas barbeque. A rooftop community room hosts a variety of activities and services designed to enhance our residents’ lives and promote opportunity for engagement within the community.

Velocity meets Evergreen standards for energy efficiency, saving valuable resources and contributing to a clean planet. The homes have been built with both the residents and sustainability in mind, achieving a balance between modern finishes and long-term durability with environmentally friendly materials. The housing development was designed according to Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED®) standards. LiveRoof systems can influence several LEED credits in areas of sustainable sites, water efficiency, energy and atmosphere, materials and resources and indoor environmental quality. Due to potential cost impacts, the project did not pursue LEED accreditation.

Velocity is located at 10711 NE 37th Court, Kirkland, WA 98033

About LiveRoof® Global, LLC
LiveRoof Global, LLC ( is the horticultural science company that developed the LiveRoof® Hybrid System, whose natural function and natural beauty offer the highest level of green roof performance at the lowest level acquisition-installation-maturation-maintenance costs. Combining the best elements of proven green roof technologies, LiveRoof establishes a seamless vegetative surface rooted in a continuous layer of soil. This design maximizes environmental benefits, energy savings and rooftop aesthetics. Regional growers in its global network adapt LiveRoof plants for local conditions and customize plant selection for every project. The proof is on the roof showcased in LiveRoof projects that stand out as signature elements on commercial, public, university and school buildings throughout the globe.

Imagine Housing on New Day Northwest

Comcast is partnering with Imagine Housing to pilot a brand new public wifi network at Imagine Housing’s Velocity apartments in Kirkland. The service will make public wifi available in the lobby of apartment buildings, and will be available city-wide in the coming months.

Steve Kipp, VP of Communications at Comcast, and Anne Levine from Imagine Housing, joined New Day on Thursday to discuss the new service.

Original story with video