Boom Design Reviews: A First on First, a Second on Second, and the Great Technicolor North
posted by April 22 at 15:15 PMon
First Things First
The only thing missing from the northeast corner of 1st Avenue and Stewart Street is, well, everything.
It’s been a parking lot as long as I can remember. To see that corner used the way a downtown corner should be used, you’ve got to flip the calendar back 80 years, when it looked like this.
Touchstone Corporation plans to fill out the site’s zoning envelope, which limits buildings to 125’. The proposed development would stand 11 stories, contain 75 apartments and 100 hotel units, operating as a sister hotel with the Inn at the Market.
“We’re going to have a tall wall of buildings behind us,” says Paul Schlachter of Olson Sundberg Kundig Allen. The zone is a strip between the 65’ height limits around the Pike Place Market and the 400’ allowances on 2nd Avenue, where three buildings are slated for construction.
Images via Olson Sundberg Kundig Allen
“We have an opportunity to celebrate the corner and make a landmark as you ascend 1st,” says Schlachter. He envisions a restaurant on the top floor, satisfying Seattle’s pining for a restaurant with a view of the skyline and Sound, a la Cloud Room. He plans to include a courtyard connecting 1st Avenue to the alley, the location of the hotel’s main entrance.
Tonight’s meeting marks the first step of the design process with the city. Why build now, I asked Schlachter, considering the forecast of a stormy economy? “The timing just seems right. This piece of property is one of the most prime pieces in Seattle. Nothing has been done with it. It’s a mystery to us why this signature location hasn’t been used before.”
Cheer them on at 5:30 pm in the boards & commissions Room L280 at City Hall, 600 4th Avenue. After-hours access info is here.
Environmental Works goes back to the design-review board tonight with a revised proposal for Bakhita Gardens on 2nd Avenue. It’s low-income housing for women and it rocks my casbah. You can read more and see the design’s previous iteration here.
“[The design review board] liked the building for the most part but had a couple design suggestions,” says Brian Lloyd of Beacon Development Group, which is developing the project for the Archdiocesan Housing Authority. He says the board members asked to change the shape of the windows (less narrow), integrate the brick and the rest of the façade (no color-band between), and unify the roofline (remove the jagged lines). “I was a little frustrated… because you go into the meeting and don’t know what the concerns or objections are going to be,” says the affable Lloyd. “Upon further reflection, there are some good ides that are going to make a better looking building.”
The design board’s second recommendation meeting will be tonight at 7:00 p.m. at Seattle City Hall. More info here.
The Great Technicolor North
This looks like a promising development. High density. Underused area. Please, almighty Lord in the heavens, may it not be these colors.
A couple hundred feet from the Seattle-Shoreline border on 15th Avenue NE (here’s a map), Jackson Square, LLC proposes what it calls Jackson Square Multifamily. The six stories would contain 65 units and 88 parking spots.
Does “multifamily” in the name mean the units could contain two or three bedrooms for families—a welcome relief from the one-bedroom apartments for singles and couples that dominate the market? Kelly Shyne of the Justen Company, the architect, said it’s too early in the process for her to know how many bedrooms would be in the units. That’s really weird. Last night’s meeting was the second recommendation from the design board – the third meeting in all – a year and a half after the first payment to begin the design process with the city. Calls to Jackson Square’s Jim Abbot haven’t been returned.
Another life-changing experience after the jump.
That bit about changing your life was pure hyperbole. Next up, another contruction in Seattle’s deep north, on Lake City Way NE and NE 140th Street, is a proposal for six stories, and it’s packed full of housing.
Architect and developer Carleton Development Group, LLC proposes 390 units, 9,500 square feet of retail space, and parking for 440 vehicles. It’s so large, I’m sure someone has written about it somewhere, and I’m sure someone, somewhere is also very upset about it. I just don’t know what they said. The meeting was yesterday. Sorry.
Finally, this next project, off Rainier Avenue South on Dearborn Street, which I briefly wrote about here, goes in for another meeting.
The proposal is for two duplexes, a triplex, and two fourplexes, comprising 15 units. The meeting is tonight at 6:30 p.m. in the Rainier Cultural Arts Center, 3515 South Alaska Street.