I live in a North Seattle neighborhood of modest houses built mostly in the early to late 1940s, generally single-story brick ramblers along with a few slightly larger houses of 1960s or 70s vintage. Back in January, I noticed some renovations being done an unassuming little house around the corner from mine on North 90th street. The house, which had a detached garage with a mother-in-law unit over it, appeared to be getting a much-needed makeover.
The original 1911 North 90th Street (or according to Trulio.com, 1917 North 90th St.). Clearly this is a single property. (Photo snatched from Google Maps. Sorry.)
A few weeks later, construction crews started taking the garage apart. Or so I thought. Within weeks, the garage became a full-fledged and very tall modern home that towered over the surrounding houses. Not only was this new house out of scale and out of character with the rest of the neighborhood, no public notice of land use action had ever been posted signaling that the lot would be subdivided. I decided to try and find out how this could happen.