Local Building Contractor Embraces Community Ties with Bellwether Gate

Mixed-Use Development Project:  Scenic waterfront location offers a historically inspired way to live, work, and play.

March 20, 2012 – Bellingham, WA — Before the invention of the automobile, communities almost always developed as mixed-use environments. The concept of living, working, shopping and recreation within walking distance is a fundamental part of our existence as social beings.

Summit Construction, a Bellingham, Washington general contractor, is a big proponent of these environments and the sense of community they foster. One of their newest projects, Bellwether Gate, is a prime example of a modern development that combines state-of-the-art architectural methods with time-honored principles of successful mixed-use environments.

The story of Bellwether Gate began when the Port of Bellingham selected Summit Construction as one of the firms tasked with environmental cleanup and development of the Bellingham Bay waterfront.

The Port of Bellingham and Summit Construction entered a working relationship designed to maximize the potential of the Bellwether Peninsula, giving special consideration to the design, view corridors, public access, and amenities.

Bellwether Gate’s first phase opened in 1999 and affords tenants and visitors unobstructed views of the marina and the San Juan Islands, thanks to its location on Bellingham Bay’s stunning Squalicum Harbor.  The development features four buildings with office space, a hotel and many restaurants and retail shops.

In designing this development, Summit Construction sought to “capture a new way to work, live and play on Bellingham Bay.” In this age of online shopping, big-box retail and suburban sprawl, the Bellwether Gate development strives to strengthen community ties by blending — rather than separating — the places in which people congregate.

At Bellwether Gate, a person can take a morning walk along the public waterfront trails, go to the office, perhaps enjoy lunch or a coffee break during the day, then meet friends after work for dinner, drinks or shopping. Visitors and tenants alike will become familiar with their favorite places, whether it’s a scenic viewpoint, cozy café, or fashionable boutique.

Although mixed-use environments take their inspiration from a bygone era, Bellwether Gate features thoroughly modern conveniences. It offers high-speed fiber optics, ample parking, moorage, and convenient access to Interstate 5 and Bellingham International Airport.

In addition to the Bellwether Gate project, Summit Construction has also developed several other high-profile mixed-use properties in Bellingham, including Fairhaven Gardens, the Young Shopping District, and the historic Waldron Building.