Development 1354 results

West Seattle development: ‘Streamlined Design Review’ for 8 units @ 9043 18th SW

One West Seattle project of note in today’s city-circulated Land Use Information Bulletin: It’s comment time for a South Delridge project going through Streamlined Design Review (a process that doesn’t require a public meeting). Four 3-story, 2-unit townhouse buildings, with 8 offstreet parking spaces, are planned to replace a house at 9043 18th SW (map). February 24th is the comment deadline if you want to be sure the city takes into account potential design issues for this project and this site. Here’s the official notice published today, which includes information on how to send a comment. No design packet is visible on the city website yet, and we’re asking the planners if one will be available; you can watch for it here.

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West Seattle development: Demolition at 3219-3221 California SW

3221

12:40 PM: Thanks to Christine for the photo from the 3200 block of California SW, where part of the old commercial building on the west side of the street was demolished this morning. This is part of the area upzoned more than five years ago, across from the biggest development that resulted from the upzoning, Springline on the east side of the street (seen in the background, under construction now for exactly a year). While a medium-size apartment building was once proposed for the west side – which also is owned by Intracorp – the plans were later changed, and today’s demolition location is planned for a mix of townhouses and live-work units, as reported here early last year.

2:07 PM: Adding video of this morning’s demolition, from WSB’s Christopher Boffoli:

West Seattle development: Townhouse plan for 3062 SW Avalon Way, once planned for 100+ apartments

The newest development plans on SW Avalon Way are for nine 3-story townhouses on each of two adjacent parcels, one of which was previously proposed for a 7-story, 100+-apartment building. The sites are 3062 SW Avalon Way and 3070 SW Avalon Way, which county records show were bought together for $1.4 million this week by Isola Homes.

The city file for each site shows an early-stage plan for three rows of three 3-story townhouses, with each of those nine-townhouse clusters having seven parking spaces along the alley to the north. The previous plan for 100+ apartments at 3062 SW Avalon Way, under different ownership, idled after one Design Review meeting in 2012. The new proposals are described in the city files as candidates for what the city calls Streamlined Design Review, which does not require public meetings but does have opportunities for public comment. Watch for those when the formal applications are filed for 3062 and 3070, which currently hold a duplex and 6-unit apartment building, both built in the 1950s.

These proposals do not involve an adjacent site that had been proposed for an ~100-unit apartment building, 3078 Avalon, which has separate ownership and was caught up in an appeal filed by a neighborhood group; a quick check of that file shows the most recent document activity back in September, and we’re still looking into that project’s status.

Southwest Design Review Board OKs Aegis Living project at 4700 SW Admiral Way

admiralwayfacade
(Rendering from meeting “packet,” by GGLO)

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

The Aegis Living assisted-living/memory-care complex planned for 4700 SW Admiral Way has won Southwest Design Review Board approval in the minimum number of meetings – two.

Giving unanimous approval were the three board members present for the second review tonight – Matt Zinski, T. Frick McNamara, and Alexandra Moravec. Joining them was the city’s assigned planner for the project, Holly Godard. The board members agreed that Aegis had listened and responded to the feedback given at the first review last July (here’s the official city report from that meeting).

This is a major milestone for the project set to replace the former Life Care Center of America, two years after we first reported that Aegis Living was buying this site.

Here’s what the project team, board, and community members said before the board made its decision:

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35th SW lane closures Saturday as crane for Aura comes down; Avalon work to follow

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11:59 AM: Just announced: The tower crane for the mixed-use project Aura on 35th SW just south of SW Avalon is coming down on Saturday, and that means lane closures on 35th. Also note work on Avalon to follow next week. From contractor Compass:

This Saturday (February 6th, 2016) we will be closing down the 4 lanes on 35th Ave SW adjacent our site to dismantle our tower crane (all of which has been approved by the City of Seattle). The road will be signed accordingly and a police officer will be present to direct traffic (see attached traffic control plan for reference). The plan is to roll on site at 5:00 am Saturday with a mobile crane so we can start work by 7:00 am.

Weather permitting, we’ll have the crane completely dismantled and hauled off by 9:00pm. Though we are permitted to work until 10 PM with the lane closures, we are confident (weather permitting) we will be out of there before then. However, if we run into complications, we will wrap up Sunday morning. We apologize for any inconveniences this may cause to your weekend commutes.

Lastly, we will begin work an Avalon St. next week as we connect our underground utilities. This work will take almost 2 weeks, and will be performed between 8:00am and 4:00pm. The lanes will be modified as we trench across the street, however, they will be signed accordingly and hopefully will not impede the daily commuters significantly.

Aura’s crane went up 14 months ago. When it’s down, two will remain in West Seattle for now, both at The Whittaker‘s site (4755 Fauntleroy Way SW).

1:10 PM: We’ve added a photo and corrected the project’s name – it’s Aura, as previously reported here.

See about-to-be-reviewed new design for 4700 SW Admiral Way

admiralwayfacade
(Click image for larger view)

That’s one rendering (by the architecture firm GGLO) from the new 42-page “packet” for this Thursday’s review of 4700 SW Admiral Way, the assisted-living center that Aegis Living plans to build where the old Life Care Center of West Seattle awaits teardown, three years after its closure, two years after Aegis bought the site.

The project is currently described as a 3-story, 80-unit complex with 36 offstreet vehicle-parking spaces and 20 bicycle spaces; 48 of the units are expected to offer assisted living, with the remaining 32 providing memory care. The packet notes, “The proposed project aims to use a stucco facade in keeping with the client’s vision of a Mediterranean oasis.” At 6:30 pm Thursday, the Southwest Design Review Board will take its second and possibly final look at the project, with the meeting including a public-comment period. The project’s first review was last July; here’s the official city report. This Thursday, it’s the only project the board will review, 6:30 pm upstairs at the Sisson Building (West Seattle Senior Center), California/Oregon.

Southwest Design Review Board, report #2: Perch advances on 2nd try

(GO HERE for coverage of the first project reviewed Thursday night, 1307 Harbor SW)

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

With some reservation, the Southwest Design Review Board voted last night to allow 1250 Alki SW – a ~100-unit apartment building that developer SolTerra has named “Perch” – to advance out of the Early Design Guidance phase on its second try.

Neighbors who have been closely watching and analyzing the process again voiced their concern that the project remains out of scale with the neighborhood. Here’s the “design packet” on which last night’s presentation was based:

Here’s how the review went:

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Southwest Design Review Board, report #1: Mixed-use 1307 Harbor SW wins approval

January 21, 2016 8:12 pm
|    Comments Off on Southwest Design Review Board, report #1: Mixed-use 1307 Harbor SW wins approval
 |   Development | West Seattle news

architects
(WSB photo: Architects Tim Rhodes and Brian Court)

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

The Southwest Design Review Board has just given its final blessing to the design of 1307 Harbor SW, the mixed-use project planned for the former Alki Tavern site and neighboring parcels, following a meeting that revealed more about what the building will be used for – residential units are a small part of what it will hold.

The board’s part of the process ended with the minimum amount of meetings – Early Design Guidance approval in April 2014, and a final recommendation tonight. Four of the board’s five members were present for the meeting, the first part of a doubleheader – chair Todd Bronk, T. Frick McNamara, Matt Zinski, and Donald Caffrey.

Here’s how it unfolded:

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West Seattle development: Perch preview; Holden houses; microhousing site for sale; more…

Six notes/updates about West Seattle development:

PERCH PREVIEW BEFORE DESIGN REVIEW: Tomorrow night, the proposed 1250 Alki SW apartment building Perch goes back to the Southwest Design Review Board for a second round of Early Design Guidance. Here’s the packet (or view it embedded below):

The first meeting (official city report here) had a big turnout, with a large group of neighbors that’s been watching the ~100-unit project and voicing concerns. We talked earlier this week with developer SolTerra‘s president Brian Heather about changes that have been made and other key points.

SolTerra started as an energy company and then went into the development business; this is not only a design-build project, but the company plans to keep it and manage it after construction. “Our whole business model is predicated on the ability to hold onto the buildings,” said Heather. “We want to build a brand around sustainability.”

They’re going for LEED Platinum, one of a handful of multi-family mid-rise residential buildings with that designation. They’re using planted walls, dubbed “living walls,” for which they have a patent, to “break up” the massing (size and shape). They’ve also moved the courtyard space up to street level and into the center of the complex, and it will have seating open to anyone, more of a “public amenity,” said Heather. The total length of the building has as a result been reduced by about 30 feet, and more setbacks are included, which affects the sightlines. SolTerra makes its own heating and refrigeration units with a “heat-recovery system” that transfers energy between units as needed. And it will flush the toilets with graywater, storing rainwater on site.

They’re still planning some commercial space, “probably focused on micro-retail,” Heather said, perhaps a café, some small artists’ booths. And residents will have online profiles and ways to connect with others. They’ll also have access to SolTerra buildings elsewhere in Seattle and other cities. “If you live in one building, you live in all the buildings,” said Melissa Milburn of SolTerra.

Depending on what happens as the Design Review process and other reviews continue, SolTerra might break ground by year’s end, with Perch opening in early 2018. The Thursday night meeting is at 8 pm at the Sisson Building (home of the Senior Center of West Seattle), California/Oregon.

Other West Seattle development notes:

ANOTHER ALKI PROJECT: Alki is a construction hotspot these days, although nothing as big as Perch is on the drawing board otherwise. But projects like this keep turning up: The newest early-stage proposal for 2116 Alki Avenue SW is a six-unit condominium building with nine offstreet parking spaces.

CONSTRUCTION PERMITS SOUGHT FOR HOLDEN SUBDIVISION: City files show 15 construction-permit applications accepted for review, related to the planned subdivision of 18 single-family houses at 2646 SW Holden. It’s been a year since we noted a demolition permit was being sought for the vacant, vandalized house on the site. Other reviews remain in the works. Last August, the property went back on the market; the listing still appears to be active, at $2.4 million.

3050 AVALON FOR SALE: Speaking of listings – while working on this roundup, we found a new listing for 3050 SW Avalon Way (mis-listed as SE), planned site of a 104-unit microhousing project that’s gone through multiple rounds of controversy.

ALSO ON AVALON – 3039 TO DESIGN REVIEW: First Early Design Guidance meeting of the Southwest Design Review Board is planned for 3039 SW Avalon Way – seven stories, 71 apartments, 21 offstreet parking spaces – which we first mentioned back in October. The meeting is at 8 pm February 18th at the Senior Center.

DESIGN REVIEW ALSO SCHEDULED FOR 4801 FAUNTLEROY: That same night, February 18th, at 6:30 pm, the SWDRB will have the second and possibly final review for this four-story mixed-use building at Fauntleroy and Edmunds, including 53 apartments and about 2,500 square feet of retail.

THURSDAY: First SW Design Review Board meeting of the year – second look at 9021 17th SW

(Added 7:54 pm: Blue Architecture‘s ‘packet’ for upcoming SWDRB meeting)
This Thursday (January 7th), the Southwest Design Review Board is scheduled to take its second look at the 9021 17th SW apartment project during its first meeting of the new year. As we first reported four weeks ago, this is the only project on the board’s agenda for January 7th. The image above is from the “packet” for the meeting (see it on the city website here, or embedded above), which includes this updated description of the project:

The project is a four-story apartment building over a partially below grade parking level with approximately 32 one- and two-bedroom dwelling units. 32 parking stalls are provided, either below grade, or a combination of below grade and surface parking. All parking is accessed from the alley. The project anticipates BuiltGreen certification for an FAR increase and allowable height increase.

The height would be up to 44 feet plus “4 feet for roof features,” per the packet; the unit count is one more than the previous version of the proposal, which was critiqued for a “mini-fortress”-like appearance during its first SWDRB review in October (WSB coverage here; official city report here) and is as a result returning for a second try at the Early Design Guidance phase of the process.

As always, the meeting will include time for public comment on the proposed design; you can also send written comments to its designated city planner, Tami Garrett, who also is your contact for comments on non-design aspects of the project, including traffic, parking, and noise – tami.garrett@seattle.gov. Thursday’s meeting is at 6:30 pm, upstairs at the Sisson Building/Senior Center, SW Oregon & California SW in The Junction.

First don’t-miss West Seattle community meeting of 2016: What’s next for HALA, and what you should know

December 30, 2015 12:58 pm
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 |   Development | Neighborhoods | West Seattle housing | West Seattle news

It was one of the biggest Seattle-city-government stories of 2015 and it’s going to be even bigger in 2016: How will the Housing Affordability and Livability Agenda – aka HALA – affect you, your neighbors, your future neighbors? What do you need to know? How can you be part of the discussions and decision-making? The Morgan Community Association is hosting a briefing geared for all interested West Seattleites, right after an abbreviated version of their group’s quarterly meeting on January 20th, and they’ve sent early word so you can get it on your calendar:

Our first meeting of 2016 starts off with a bang! We will have a short regular MoCA meeting from 6:00 to 6:45 pm to do normal business and officer elections. At 7:00 pm we will transition to a West Seattle-wide presentation on two topics which will affect all neighborhoods; the implementation of the HALA “Grand Bargain” and upcoming code changes governing Mother-in-Law apartments and back yard cottages. All West Seattle community people are invited to attend and learn more about these and how to stay informed and get engaged. It is expected that the Mother-in-Law/Backyard Cottages code changes will go before City Council in late February, so now is the time to learn more.

Here’s the agenda for the HALA briefing/discussion:

Special West Seattle-wide Meeting: “HALA” – What’s It All About ??

7:00-8:00 pm
HALA: An Overview, The Grand Bargain, Focused Outreach and Next Steps
Jesseca Brand, City of Seattle Planning

8:00-9:00 pm
Detached Accessory Dwelling Units (DADU’s or Backyard Cottages) and Attached Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs or Mother-in-law Apartments)
Nick Welch, City of Seattle Planning

The meeting will be in the lower level meeting rooms at The Kenney (WSB sponsor), 7125 Fauntleroy Way SW.

West Seattle development: 1118 Alki, 5448 Delridge plan changes

December 29, 2015 3:08 pm
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 |   Development | West Seattle news

Our routine check of city files show two sites where plans are apparently changing – one on Alki, one in Delridge:

(King County Assessor’s Office photos)
MORE UNITS FOR 1118 ALKI: When a potential development plan emerged in September at 1118 Alki Avenue SW, it was proposed for five units. Now a new early-stage plan proposes to replace the single-family houses at 1118 and 1122 (95 and 73 years old, respectively) with a six-story, 11-unit building with 17 off-street parking spaces behind the building (which is described on a document as both “apartment” and “condominium”). No formal application yet but we’ll watch the files. Real-estate records show 1118 Alki, listed at $1.9 million, is in the process of being sold “pending feasibility.”

POTENTIAL LIVE-WORKS AT 5448 DELRIDGE: More than a year ago, we noted a plan for this site between Cottage Grove Commons and Martin’s Way – proposing a one-story office building with a “pre-fab metal frame.” Now, a document filed this month seeks “paid coaching” with the city regarding “setbacks, unit count, design review for live-work project.” In the meantime, city files also show the city’s been investigating work at the site allegedly beyond the scope of current permits.

West Seattle development: New mixed-use proposal with 125 apartments at 4754 Fauntleroy Way SW

(King County Assessor’s Office photo of southern part of proposed development’s site)
For the first time in seven months, a major new development proposal for West Seattle has appeared in city files. This one is for the southeast corner of Fauntleroy Way SW and SW Edmunds, across from the south end of under-construction megaproject The Whittaker, and immediately south of the planned CVS drugstore site. This project’s official address is 4754 Fauntleroy Way SW and its site plan was just filed this week. It’s proposed as a seven-story, mixed-use building with 125 apartments over ground-floor commercial space and 90 offstreet parking spaces, on two parcels totaling 18,000 square feet, the southernmost of which currently holds the Capitol Loans pawn shop; the site is zoned NC3-85. This will have to go through Design Review – no date yet, as this is a very early-stage proposal that just appeared in the system. The site-plan document shows Caron as the architecture firm on the project. This would mean redevelopment for three of the four corners at that intersection (counting the 4-story, 50+-unit proposal at 4801 Fauntleroy, the southwest corner).

West Seattle development updates: Second SW Design Review Board meeting set for Perch at 1250 Alki SW; 7 units now planned on Junction lot once proposed for 40

December 19, 2015 10:21 am
|    Comments Off on West Seattle development updates: Second SW Design Review Board meeting set for Perch at 1250 Alki SW; 7 units now planned on Junction lot once proposed for 40
 |   Development | West Seattle news

Checking the city Department of Planning and Development (new names soon) online files for end-of-week updates of interest, we found two:

2ND DESIGN REVIEW BOARD MEETING FOR 1250 ALKI SW: It’ll be an all-almost-waterfront-project lineup when the Southwest Design Review Board has its second meeting of the new year on January 21st. We’ve already reported that 1307 Harbor SW – the mixed-use project for the old Alki Tavern site and neighboring parcels – is up for its next review at 6:30 that night. Now the second slot on the schedule, 8 pm, is slated for the board’s second look at Perch, the proposed ~100-unit apartment building at 1250 Alki SW. Its first review, in October, drew a large turnout (WSB coverage here; official city report here). The meeting will be at the SWDRB’s usual venue, the Sisson Building (WS Senior Center) at Oregon/California in The Junction.

7 UNITS FOR 4439 41ST SW: Another followup today on 4439 41st SW, where neighbors – including a church and school – voiced concern last year over a then-proposed 40-unit apartment building with five offstreet parking spaces replacing a 105-year-old single-family house. Two months ago, we reported on a new plan for the site – a four-unit rowhouse, plus a lot split, with no indication at the time of what the other lot would hold. Now the city files show a two-unit townhouse plus one single-family house added to the site, for a total of seven units proposed. The new site plan showing all seven units indicates four offstreet parking spaces are planned behind the rowhouses, and a garage for each of the three other units.

Out with the DPD, in with SDCI and OPCD: What you need to know

December 16, 2015 11:56 am
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 |   Development | West Seattle news

Six months ago, Mayor Murray announced he was breaking up the Department of Planning and Development. Now, the two-way split is about to become official. If you’re interested in land use/development/construction/related issues, here’s what the city says you need to know:

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West Seattle development: 6 notes, from Admiral to Highland Park

December 15, 2015 12:33 pm
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 |   Development | West Seattle news

Six development-related notes from around West Seattle:

NEXT DESIGN REVIEW MEETING SET: Aegis Living‘s proposed assisted-living center at 4700 SW Admiral Way goes back to the Southwest Design Review Board on February 4th (6:30 pm at the Sisson Building). It’s on the boards for 81 units, 36 parking spaces, and the proposal page now mentions “removal of an exceptional tree” (although a report just added to the project file today puts the tree in question just below the “exceptional” threshold). This will be the project’s second meeting before the Southwest Design Review Board; the last one was in July.

Meantime, the permit/application pace is picking up, perhaps the pre-holiday rush – a few of note:

5029 DELRIDGE WAY SW: Early-stage proposal to demolish a single-family house and garage and replace it with four single-family houses and a duplex.

7329 BAINBRIDGE PL. SW: Early-stage proposal for six rowhouse units – a fourplex and a duplex.

1706 ALKI SW: The application is officially in for this teardown-to-seven-townhouse proposal we mentioned in August, so watch for the official comment period to open.

7717 HIGHLAND PARK WAY SW: The application is also officially in – with comment period ahead – for this teardown-to-five-single-family-house proposal we first mentioned three months ago.

MORGAN JUNCTION LOT SPLIT: Lots of lot splits in the city files right now but 6504 44th SW is somewhat high-profile – it’s right behind the Morgan Junction building that’s home to five businesses on the southwest corner of California and Fauntleroy. It’s proposed for splitting into two parcels, 7,332 sq. ft. and 5,668 sq. ft., with “existing structures to be removed.” No official plan on the books yet for what will replace them; the location is zoned single-family. Comments are being taken through Sunday (December 20th); here’s how to comment.

FOLLOWUP: City says Junction developer violated code by taking down tree Design Review Board wanted him to keep



By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

The city has accused a Junction developer of violating city code by taking down a tree on the site where he’s planning a mixed-use project.

We reported on the tree-felling last month, after a reader shared the video (above) showing the tree being cut down at 4532 42nd SW on Sunday morning, November 15th.

That was a week and a half after the tree had figured into the Southwest Design Review Board‘s second Early Design Guidance review of the project.

(From the project “packet,” a rendering of building massing if the tree were kept)
Though the project team had said botanists determined it fell just shy of being an “exceptional” tree – 29.7 inches at midpoint of his trunk, with 30 inches the city’s threshold – the board said it was in its purview to request a design preserving the tree. Here’s our coverage of that meeting, and here’s the official city report on it, made public just this week; it noted, in part, that “The Board recommended that the project could move forward to MUP application, provided the design retained the Western Red Cedar at the northeast corner and incorporated this significant vegetation into the overall design of open space and massing transitions to the north and east.”

When we contacted owner/developer Mark Braseth the day that tree was cut, his reply contended that it and two others cut on the property that morning were allowed to be removed without a permit. But the city disagrees.

After seeing the project file’s mention of a “violation,” we contacted the Department of Planning and Development to ask what it was for and what the proposed penalty is. Today, we heard back from DPD spokesperson Wendy Shark:

After removal of the tree, the Department of Planning and Development received a complaint that a tree was illegally removed. After investigating the situation, we’ve determined that there is a code violation for removing a tree 6 inches or greater in diameter on an undeveloped lot without approval from DPD. This is a violation of Seattle’s Tree Protection Ordinance. We are determining the appraised value of the tree to define the penalty amount and an appropriate restoration plan for the site. We will issue a notice of violation once we obtain that information.

Among community comments in the project file is one voicing concern about the tree removal’s effects on the integrity of the design process. It was written by Deb Barker, a retired land-use planner and former chair of the Southwest Design Review Board who often comments at review meetings. She wrote to DPD director Diane Sugimura, “It’s been almost a month since a developer cut down the mature cedar tree from his property at 4532 42nd Ave SW, and the silence from DPD is deafening … This letter is not about the removal of a healthy tree on a vacant lot. … This letter is about the perceived impact to the City of Seattle Design Review Process.”

Today, DPD’s Shark told us that has been addressed as well:

Shortly after the tree was removed, DPD staff met with the design review board chair to discuss the situation given the previous guidance from the board. At the last public early design guidance meeting, the board had requested that modifications be made to the bulk of the building along the alley to provide a better buffer for the neighboring Lowrise zone behind the proposed building. The existing tree provided a natural buffer to help accomplish this goal, so it was recommended by the board that the tree be preserved. If the tree was not to be preserved, then the design team would need to return for another public meeting showing revised designs that respond to the board comments on building bulk and creating a better buffer. With that in mind, the applicant and their design team will have to return for another early design guidance meeting.

Making modifications to a site while it’s undergoing a public design review process is not appropriate and erodes DPD’s trust, as well as the community’s trust in the applicant. The design review process provides a public forum for the board and community to offer feedback on the proposed building design, to create a product that responds to the neighborhood context while also meeting the objectives of the developer or property owner. Actions such as this reflect a disrespect for regulations and for the community where the development is proposed, which, during this time of rapid growth and citywide change, is a disservice to fellow developers as we contemplate change to this important but sometimes complicated design review process.

So the bottom line is that the project will have to return for a third round of Early Design Guidance. No date set for that yet. Design Review Boards are all-volunteer panels appointed by the city who work with the DPD, which has the final say.

The project is on a site that had been approved for a different mixed-use project more than six years ago, under different ownership; Braseth purchased it earlier this year and pursued a new plan, estimated at last month’s meeting as 6 stories, ~75 apartments, 3,813 sq.ft. of commercial space, offstreet parking for ~63 vehicles (though this is in an area where projects can be built without any parking because of the proximity of “frequent transit”).

West Seattle development: Next Design Review for 9021 17th SW

December 9, 2015 2:28 pm
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 |   Development | West Seattle housing | West Seattle news

A development note from South Delridge: The second Early Design Guidance meeting for the proposed apartment building at 9021 17th SW now has a date – January 7th. That will be less than three months after the Southwest Design Review Board took its first look at the building on October 15th (WSB coverage here), sending it back for a second round of EDG after saying it seemed too much like a “fortress” . The building is still proposed for four stories and 31 units, according to the city website, which shows that a revised design “packet” for the next meeting is not yet available. The review meeting is set for 6:30 pm January 7th at the Sisson Building (California/Oregon) in The Junction.

Second Design Review meeting set for 1307 Harbor Avenue SW project on ex-Alki Tavern site, almost two years after the first

That’s the latest draft rendering for 1307 Harbor Avenue SW, the mixed-use project planned for what is currently about a half-block of shuttered, fenced off vacant buildings including the former Alki Tavern, across from Don Armeni Boat Ramp. The tavern already had been closed a year by the time the proposed mixed-use project had its first Southwest Design Review Board meeting in April of 2014 – and now, more than a year and a half later, the date is finally set for its next one. In our coverage of that first meeting, the project was described as including 21 residential units and 41 underground parking spaces; now it’s described as including 15 residential units and 27 parking spaces “within the structure.” It’s also still proposed for “retail, restaurant, office, and light manufacturing” space, the same non-residential uses as mentioned before. Here’s the draft of the packet for the meeting, with more details on the plan:

The project has changed architects – the packet shows Rhodes Architecture & Light, a West Seattle-based firm, as “architect of record,” while Miller-Hull was the architect at the time of the 2014 review. The upcoming review meeting is scheduled for 6:30 pm Thursday, January 21st, at the Sisson Building in The Junction (California/Oregon).

ADDED WEDNESDAY: See the comment from Tim Rhodes with clarification of the two architecture firms’ roles.

West Seattle development: Comment time for Upton Flats

After other proposals surfaced and stalled in recent years, the mixed-use project making its way through the city system for 35th and Graham in High Point has just hit another milestone: Official application for a land-use permit, as announced in today’s edition of the city’s Land Use Information Bulletin. This means a two-week public-comment period has opened.

(From the second Early Design Guidance meeting’s information packet)
After two Southwest Design Review Board meetings – find the reports here – the project at 6058 35th SW is now proposed as two 4-story buildings, with a total of 102 apartments, 10,000 square feet of commercial space, and an underground garage with 109 parking spaces. The notice is here; you can use this form to send in a comment – December 2nd is the deadline. Meantime, this project, currently named “Upton Flats,” still has to go back to the Design Review Board at least one more time; no date yet.

P.S. This development only covers a fraction of the sprawling vacant space at 35th/Graham, specifically the 35th SW frontage and part of the corner; the rest of the site is still planned for an 11-building, 52-unit townhouse development, under the address 3420 SW Graham, shown in the image above, to the east of the 6058 35th SW buildings.

FOLLOWUP: Disputed tree cut down at site of proposed 4532 42nd SW development

While chainsaws are certainly busy around the city during this break between tree-toppling storms, some tree-cutting in West Seattle this morning had nothing to do with the weather. We learned about it via this video tweet:



Twitter user @n7gon noticed the tree-cutting on the site of the proposed mixed-use project at 4532 42nd SW and asked us about it. You might recall our report about the latest Southwest Design Review Board meeting related to that site – at which board members told the development team to design the project around one particular tree, though the owner-developers had received an opinion that the tree fell short of being what the city considered “exceptional.” They said keeping the tree would present challenges including fewer units and fewer offstreet-parking spaces. They also said that the tree would likely die when the site north of theirs is redeveloped, a site under different ownership, currently holding a single-family house but zoned, as is most of that area, for something much bigger.

Now the tree’s gone (along with others on the site). Nothing in the project’s online files indicated tree-cutting was imminent, so after hearing about it, we went over to see if anyone was still there.

We didn’t find anyone on site, so we e-mailed the property’s owner/developer, West Seattleite Mark Braseth, to ask for comment. He replied with this:

To whom it may concern,

The City of Seattle only regulates exceptional trees on private property over 30 inches in diameter, and limits tree removal on commercially-zoned, privately-owned sites to no more than three trees larger than six inches in diameter within a single year. The City determined that all trees on site were non-exceptional (under 30 inches in diameter), and therefore the three trees taken were allowed to be removed without a permit. The City requires that any new development replace the previously-existing tree canopy with the same or equal amount of tree canopy cover, upon the new trees’ maturity.

As a family development company with long-term roots in the West Seattle community, we are excited to develop this property into something that we can own and be proud of for a long time. We understand that trees are important to the community, and they are important to our project design. We are working with our architects and landscape architect to design a building that includes mature landscaping and large trees that the public can enjoy for the long term future.

Sincerely,
Mark Braseth

The city’s tree policy is here.

Back in 2009, under different ownership, the site was approved for a different development that stalled. Braseth bought it earlier this year and brought forth a different proposal which as of last week’s meeting was penciled in as 6-stories, ~75 apartments, 3,813 sq.ft. of commercial space, and offstreet parking for ~63 vehicles (though the site is in a “frequent transit” zone with no requirement for any offstreet parking). One structure on the site was demolished in 2008; the one that remains will be torn down for this project.

Missed tonight’s Seattle 2035 meeting? 8 more days to comment

Over the course of tonight’s West Seattle open house for the city’s Comprehensive Plan update process – aka “Seattle 2035” – about sixty people stopped by, according to city reps. That leaves about 99,940 West Seattleites who didn’t. Maybe you’ve already commented on how you think the city should shape growth over the next 20 years. If you haven’t, you still have time – until November 20th, one week from tomorrow. Here’s what you’ll want to look at first:

*Open-house presentation slide deck
*Online illustrated doc explaining the process
*Overview document including the four options the city is suggesting for how growth could happen – scroll all the way to the end to review “Alternative 1: Continue Current Trends,” “Alternative 2: Guide growth to Urban Centers” (The Junction is our area’s Urban Center), “Alternative 3: Guide growth to Urban Villages near Light Rail,” and “Alternative 4: Guide growth to Urban Villages near Transit.”
*The full 394-page document is here

Last but not least, here’s how to comment.

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