Part of the solution to the housing crisis

Sixth Alder is a workable (and appealing) contribution to our multi-faceted and ever-more complicated housing situation.

“If you are not part of the solution, you are part of the problem”

That seems to be the unspoken philosophy of the owners of Sixth & Alder, the commercial and residential building at the corner of, well, you know, Sixth & Alder.

The current housing dilemma that we all, renters, homeowners, investors and neighbors (among many others) find ourselves in has many aspects, dimensions, permutations, short- and long-term impacts, and, of course, solutions.

Sixth & Alder (also known as 6A) is one set of solutions.

Sixth & Alder is a workable (and appealing) contribution to our multi-faceted and ever-more complicated housing situation.

In its own way, Sixth & Alder is its own barometer of the housing dynamic at work across the country if not around the world.

As with most housing complexes, the largest unit is two-bedroom, with additional units available as variations on one-bedroom or studios.

Covered and secured parking is an option. Dedicated electric vehicle parking is available (with free charging for residents) and, Sixth & Alder is deliberately pet friendly.

As to extra amenities, Sixth & Alder has a dedicated pet spa, an inhouse recycling center, and a rooftop lounge area with a barbecue, fire pit, two big screen monitors, a small putt-putt golf course and a stunning view of mountains all around (Cascades and Olympics) including, of course Mount Rainier.

There is also an interior lounge area with a pool table, big screens and a food preparation area for games or gatherings.

Sixth & Alder has 111 units, and as of the end of January, an occupancy rate of about 93%.

Sixth & Alder is locally owned, with a very attentive, hands-on owner who has an eye for the best opportunity and resources for optimal northwest living.

If you know Tacoma, or at least the Puget Sound region, Sixth & Alder sits on Sixth Avenue (which runs east to west) at about the mid-point between downtown Tacoma and the waterfront on the West Side (approaching the Narrows Bridge).

In other words, for morning people, stunning sunrises — over the mountain — are visible from the eastern end of 6th Ave and, in the opposite direction, at the other end of the day, equally astounding views of the sunsets can be seen at the western end of 6th ave.

In other words, Sixth & Alder checks all the boxes of access to parks, businesses, bus lines and entertainment.

Other neighborhoods might object to such a development in their areas, but 6th Avenue is the ideal locus for increased use, accessibility and, eventual growth in terms of density.

6th Avenue is, and has been, a mix of residential and commercial neighborhoods. A generation ago 6th Avenue was the direct access to the Narrows Bridge (which is why the western stretch, near Winco, is so much wider than the rest). Since then, some areas of 6th Avenue have been prone for development while some have been relatively neglected.

Sixth & Alder is a sign or bellwether of what the entire neighborhood is becoming. The whole area is a short distance from the University of Puget Sound and Proctor Business District and, is of course a walkable distance to a variety of attractions from live music to fine or informal dining. Or tattoo studios. Or a whole range of independent shops, studios and eateries.

As locals know, 6th Ave is everything a thriving neighborhood should be; it’s walkable, international, with educational, entertainment and dining possibilities in every direction and with nature, schools and parks nearby.

You won’t find very many look-alike big box stores that dominate many other thoroughfares, and what passes for strip malls along Sixth Avenue are packed with unexpected and serendipitous experiences and venues.

In short, Sixth Avenue is something akin to the spinal column of Tacoma. It reaches from east to west, encompassing residential and business areas, creative districts (like the Merlino Art Center) The Evergreen State College campus and a stunning waterfront park on the western edge.

Sixth Avenue, for better or worse, is a leading economic and cultural indicator of the health of the larger community.

Several years ago, many in the Proctor Neighborhood opposed the construction of large mixed-use buildings in that area. Sixth Avenue, on the other hand, welcomes them.

If you don’t know it already, Sixth Ave is worthy of a closer look. Or two. Or maybe even as a place to call home.