Mercy Othello Plaza

Affordable, energy-efficient transit-oriented development in Rainier Valley
Mercy Othello Plaza at street level with a Link light rail train in the background.

Project facts

  • Location: Othello Station, Seattle, WA

  • Site area: 0.73 acres

  • Development partner: Mercy Housing NW

  • Architect: Ankrom Moisan Architects

  • Contractor: Walsh Construction

  • Program: 108 affordable homes, 7,450 square feet of office and retail

  • Project cost: ±$31.1 million

  • Opened: 2017

About this project 

Mercy Othello Plaza is a mixed-use facility located across the street from the Othello Link light rail Station. It provides 108 energy-efficient affordable homes for individuals and families earning $18,000 to $55,000 a year. Sixty percent of the apartments offer two or three bedrooms to accommodate families. The building includes a 2,000 square foot community center for resident services, 7,500 square feet of office space for Mercy Housing Northwest headquarters and landscaped courtyard. Secured parking for residents is also available. 

The project includes 108 affordable homes with over 60% of the units serving larger households with two- and three-bedrooms. The units serve those earning 30-60% of area median income and was the first project in Washington State to use both 4% and 9% Low Income Housing Tax Credit programs.  

Mercy Housing envisions Mercy Othello Plaza as a hub for growing a vibrant, culturally diverse neighborhood, with restaurants, shopping and transit located steps from the front door. Designed by Ankrom Moisan Architects and built by Walsh Construction, the integrated, pedestrian-friendly facility is intended to strengthen community connections and foster neighborhood growth by combining affordable housing and commercial uses, providing space for community gatherings, and making it easier for people to get around using transit. 

Sound Transit sold a portion of the land it acquired for construction of its Othello Station to Mercy Housing through a competitive application process. Sound Transit and the City of Seattle worked together to use City grant funds for accelerating the offering schedule for the site’s development. Other funding sources for the project include the Washington State Finance Housing Commission Low Income Housing Tax Credits, the Seattle Office of Housing, JPMorgan Chase Foundation, and Norcliffe Foundation. 

Mercy Othello Plaza won a 2018 Golden Nugget Merit Award for Best Affordable Housing Community, a 2018 VISION 2040 Award from Puget Sound Regional Council and was a finalist in Affordable Housing Finance Magazine’s 2018 Readers’ Choice Awards in the Family category.