Heidi Kayler started a Nextdoor group to brainstorm what might be done with Mirrormont Stables at 15201 Issaquah Hobart Rd SE. Many possibilities emerged: Restoring it as an historic property; preservation of open space; a King County Park with play structures; doggie park; community common space; restaurant with meeting rooms… Apparently, only five acres of the 13-acre property are actually useable land.
From Heidi Kayler: I spoke with Michael Temcov, of the Temcov Foundation, owner of the Stables. An interesting historical note, Michael’s dad, John Temcov, built the first house in Mirrormont and also worked closely with the primary developer of Mirrormont, Rod Loveless (I also happened to go to school with his son, Duane).
The property has 13.21 acres, has a (decrepit) mobile home on the site, and the 8-stall horse barn. It’s zoned residential. Currently, residential zoning is one house per five acres in that area, so it’s possible to split it into two parcels. The property itself is appraised at $313,000 (plus $1000 for the structure); the Temcov Foundation is asking $750,000 for the property.
From J. Todd Scott, AIA, Preservation Architect for King County’s Historic Preservation Program:
This hobby horse barn is not likely eligible for designation as a King County Landmark due to alteration of siding and windows, and its deteriorated condition. According to King County Assessor’s property record cards it was built in 1958 and has been known locally as Mirrormont Stables.
By World War II, scenic rural landscapes were dotted with small farms and farming communities throughout much of the county, including the Cedar River valley. Some urban dwellers purchased small tracts of land in the rural areas that they used as hobby farms. A hobby farm is a small holding that is maintained without the expectation of it being a primary source of income. Many of these included the stabling of horses, often used just for recreational purposes, while others were managed as working farms for a secondary
income. Small rural tracts were also marketed to families for small-scale supplemental diversified farming in the 1910s and 20s. One or both parents would work in town and keep animals, small orchards, and a vegetable garden on a small acreage.
This larger property is mostly given to woodland, save a small area at the northern corner, where a Dutch gambrel barn stands abandoned, slowly disappearing beneath an
advance of vegetation and deteriorating beneath the elements. Less than 200 feet from a busy road, “MIRRORMONT STABLES” can still be viewed by passersby, appearing in large, block lettering across the front façade. The barn is clad in horizontal, lapped siding and covered by rolled composition sheets that are increasingly encumbered by moss and weathered enough in areas to expose the wooden shingles beneath. Windows appear to have been single awning windows, though most of them have been removed or destroyed. A half-gabled shed extends from the southwestern corner and any driveway or pathway to the barn is not discernable.
A note on the current status: Heidi will remain in touch with Mr. Temcov and continue to explore potential options related to the property. Others’ input and assistance are always welcome.