For over twenty years, job growth has continued to outpace population growth in downtown Bellevue, according to city records. However, this could potentially change sometime over the next four years as a record number of multifamily projects prepare to deliver into the neighborhood’s housing market.
Bobby Shanahan, a senior research associate for Colliers International in Bellevue, says it will be interesting to see who moves into Bellevue’s business district as these apartment become available for lease. “There are a lot of tech workers so it’s becoming a more desirable place to live, and that’s being proven by the development pipeline,” added Shanahan. “I think it’s definitely starting to differentiate itself from Seattle and becoming its city in its own right. ”
There are a lot of tech workers so it’s becoming a more desirable place to live, and that’s being proven by the development pipeline
According to Colliers International’s The Future of Downtown Bellevue report, approximately 1,500 residential units were delivered between 2015 and 2016. However, 2017 and 2018 will each see more than 9,000 units each year, with 2019 bringing an additional near 11,000 units and 2020 over 12,500 units. Of the different real estate coming online to downtown Bellevue in the next four years the multifamily market will surpass all others by over one million square feet, which compensates for almost half of all the new development, says the report.
Colliers’ report also states that in the year 2016, the number of people working in downtown Bellevue has reached 51,500, compared to 12,500 who live there. These numbers are anticipated to climb by 2020 to 60,527 people that will have found employment in the area and almost 20,000 will have taken up residence.
Shanahan says a combination of positive economic factors and increased corporate interest in the area is driving the upcoming future multifamily development. He continued on to say that Bellevue has always been a great place to do business, but people are beginning to discover that it is also a great place to live as well. “With more companies opening offices here, more people will want to live here, residential growth follows employment trends,” Shanahan added. “There’s something to be said about living where you work.”