Triangle house: a slice of weird Seattle

The Egan House, a rare example of Mid-century modernist architecture in Seattle designed by architect Robert Reichert, hasn’t suffered many alterations over the years. A small deck on the front of the house and a steel beam to support the cantilevered roof are the only visible additions.

Sketched March 12 and 17, 2015

Welcome to the Egan House, the latest addition to my list of delightfully weird Seattle.

The $2,300 month-to-month rental includes unreachable built-in shelves high on the wall and a door-to-nowhere on the second floor. More oddities: a cantilevered roof over the entrance, a birdhouse crowning the triangular facade and an original Sears kitchen from the ’50s.

Built in 1958 and named after its original owner, retired Admiral Willard Egan, the strange, wedge-shaped residence sits at the bottom of a steep slope on the western edge of Capitol Hill. Some past owners considered it impractical and thought about demolishing it, but the property is now a historical landmark. The building belongs to Historic Seattle, a nonprofit that has maintained it as a single-family rental since 2003, and the six-acre greenbelt where it stands is owned by the Seattle Parks Department.

Current tenant Alaa Mendili, a 31-year-old interactive designer transplanted from Montreal, has furnished the 1,200-square-foot “dream bachelor pad” carefully to match the home’s modernist style. “I feel very lucky to live here,” he said. “Not everyday you get to live in a triangle.”

Tenant Alaa Mendili said the space felt a little creepy at first, but he has gotten used to not having neighbors around and falling sleep to the white noise from I-5.
The Egan House is located at 1500 Laview Boulevard East. The I-5 freeway, which opened in 1962, separated the home from the rest of the Eastlake community.
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I abandoned these last two sketches when it started to rain too hard, but I thought you might like to see them too.

Originally published in The Seattle Times on March 20, 2015.

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