Tomorrow (Thursday) night, the Southwest Design Review Board takes its first look at 4745 40th SW, an apartment complex planned right across the street from the Masonic Temple and the southwest edge of the 4755 Fauntleroy Way megaproject.
Its design packet for the meeting is available online – you can see it here. We spoke recently with Suzi Morris from Phoenix-headquartered Alliance Residential, which is buying the property and developing the site, to find out more about the project in advance of the Early Design Guidance meeting.
The site is “split-zoned,” which means the two buildings comprising the project will be different heights:
Six (south building) and seven (north building) stories are what’s currently planned. Depending on how design review goes, they are expecting it to have 145 to 150 units, ranging from 400 square feet to 1000 square feet. Parking will be in the range that most recent projects have planned – .8 or .9 per unit. Encore Architects, a new firm formed by veteran local architects, is working on the project.
Another current trend that includes this project – planning “live-work” space rather than outright commercial. Morris says they feel that will suit 40th SW well.
Alliance has three other Seattle projects right now – one in Ballard, 166 units, completed this past February and 50 percent leased; the other two are in Capitol Hill, one with 105 units and the other with 248 units, breaking ground this July.
Morris stresses that they “try to build to the context of the neighborhood and who’s living in it.” Some of the units will have decks facing out to the forthcoming city park in the center of that block on 40th.
This is considered a “great location” and the 150-unit building size, “a great size.” Alliance has “had West Seattle on our list for a while” and in fact almost bought a different building site here last year but “that didn’t work out” – they’re not disclosing what site it was, though.
Alliance manages its own properties, and expects this building to have amenities including a second-story courtyard, outdoor entertainment area, roof deck, two entertainment spaces, community events to connect residents, plus bicycle storage.
If the process moves at the pace they’re hoping for, they hope to break ground for the project next spring, and like most projects of this size, it should take about a year and a half to be built. There are no alley or street vacations involved in this project, which will have an alley entrance for the garage. The two-story office building on the site now, though only 24 years old, will be torn down – it’s “not the highest and best use of the site,” is how Morris put it. The project is not yet named, though you will see “Broadstone” on the design packet – that’s a brand of sorts for Alliance, it was explained.
They believe “the market is still strong; the vacancy rate (in the city) is still low. From a national perspective, Seattle is still one of the strongest cities to invest in. The job growth here is stronger than most markets.”
Tomorrow night’s Design Review meeting is at 6:30 pm upstairs at the Senior Center of West Seattle (California/Oregon). As always, public comment is welcome.