After a year of construction, Mercy Othello Plaza finally opened its doors on March 27th! The Mercy Housing Northwest headquarters relocated to the ground level, and residents have begun moving in to their new homes this week.
After a three week lease-up window to fill 108 vacancies at our newest Southeast Seattle community, a record-breaking number of applications were collected. With such a desirable location just a block from the Othello light rail station, we expected a large pool of applicants. However, no one could predict that over 2,000 applications would come through in a matter of weeks.
A public lottery drawing was held on Jan. 30th, with hundreds of hopeful applicants in attendance. It was a tough day for the applicants, with more disappointment than excitement, given the odds. A Seattle Times reporter was present that day, and was able to capture the mixed sentiments in the room. This thoughtful piece was featured on the front page of Seattle Times’ February 13 issue. MHNW President, Bill Rumpf, addressed the crowd: “We wish we could house you all.” At that meeting, we were all reminded of the dire need our city has for affordable housing, and the work that we here at MHNW must continue.
We are excited to be able to house 108 more families and individuals in Southeast Seattle. As residents move in to their new homes, each household will receive a welcome bag filled with home goods, along with information for local resources to help them get settled.
We’d like to express a special thank you to our generous community of donors for fulfilling MHNW’s welcome bag wish-list of home goods. Your contributions will help our residents get settled in to their new homes. Thanks to our partner, CBRE, for bringing out a group of volunteers to help staff prepare welcome bags for our residents!
If you missed out on the opportunity to donate or volunteer with our resident welcome bag efforts this time around, don’t fret! We’ll have another chance for you to get involved with preparing resident welcome bags this summer when we gear up for the opening of Eleanor Apartments in Bellingham! Keep an eye out for more information on this opportunity by following our MHNW Facebook page!