Amazon’s hotel for homeless comes to life

Amazon’s hotel for homeless comes to life

When Amazon donated an empty South Lake Union hotel for use as a homeless shelter, it was investing in a model that Mary’s Place, the service provider, has perfected: turning vacant or transitioning buildings into temporary shelter.

Amazon owns the onetime Travelodge for the property, not the building; it plans to redevelop the space in the next year. For now, the structure is a kind of road trip hotel, squatting beneath new development. Perhaps in the time of the World’s Fair it fit in, but in contrast to the glass-clad buildings surrounding it, its welcome has worn thin. There are other, similarly dated hotels in the neighborhood, all of which also seem destined for a wrecking ball.

But since the commerce giant has donated the building, it’s become more vibrant than it’s ever been. On a Wednesday evening, children of all ages run the length of the building, bouncing basketballs, playing chase. Mothers, children, and pets spill from their rooms and into the hallways. There’s great diversity among its occupants, far more so than Seattle at large. For dinner, they all eat beef stew in the building’s common room.

The Mary’s Place approach is unique in the Seattle area — one that, considering the cutthroat real estate competition facing affordable housing and homeless shelters, floats the service provider with the current of the construction boom, not against. […]

Aline Chahine
Aline is an international licensed architect currently practicing in Canada, she is the reason you are reading this right now, Aline founded the platform back in 2008 shaping the very foundation of Architecture Lab, her exemplary content curation process that defines the online magazine today.
Aline Chahine
Aline Chahine
Aline is an international licensed architect currently practicing in Canada, she is the reason you are reading this right now, Aline founded the platform back in 2008 shaping the very foundation of Architecture Lab, her exemplary content curation process that defines the online magazine today. Highlights Aline founded Architecture Lab in 2008 Lead editor of dan | dailyarchnews since 2019 Founded and Creative Director of DesignRaid Licensed architect with creative sales and marketing experience Experience As full-fledged architect, Aline's background involved a great deal of research that lead to the creation of Architecture Lab as an online database of exemplary design. Her experience snowballed into founding two architecture platforms, Architecture Lab and DesignRaid. Education Aline received USEK’s Master of Architecture in 2004 and BA in English from the University of Toronto
TITLE | Founder of Architecture Lab
About Architecture Lab Architecture Lab is a MKR.S Media brand, a website devoted to extraordinary design and aesthetics aiming to promote exceptional aesthetic values and sustainable design in all it's shapes and sizes. Learn more about us and our editorial process and feel free to contact us if you would like to see something in particular on the website, our certified experts will get back to you with the most trustworthy advice as soon as possible. Read all articles by Aline | Follow her on LinkedIn

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