4755 Fauntleroy development: 1st look at street-level ‘concepts’

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By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

On September 27th – one week from Thursday – the Southwest Design Review Board gets its first look at the mixed-use megaproject (we haven’t used that term in a while, but this one seems to merit it) proposed for 4755 Fauntleroy Way SW.

As noted in our September 7th report on the project – which first came to light in July – it would span not only the ex-Huling Chevrolet site at that address but also, fronting Alaska, the block from Fauntleroy to 40th, now holding a gas station, funeral home, and ex-used car lot.

By the end of this week, the “packet” with visuals for the meeting should be available online. Over the weekend, the project team went public with three sketches that envision the streetscape in the spots where they are looking at mid-block connectors, aka passthroughs Above, a possible Fauntleroy view looking into the “connector” – next, a possible view from 40th SW on the other side.

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The project team say they are envisioning the 40th SW side overall as more of a “green street.” Here’s their concept of a potential street-level view:

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The project site does NOT include the Alki Masonic Lodge, though its Fauntleroy side would be immediately east of that. Right now, the project – which does not have a working title as of last check – is envisioned at six floors, more than 350 apartments, and around 55,000 square feet of retail, over more than 530 parking spaces. While no retailers have been named yet, the project team confirms they’re in “advanced” talks with an unnamed grocer for about two-thirds of the space.

The September 27th Design Review Board meeting is set for 6:30 pm at what’s become the board’s usual venue in West Seattle, the Senior Center (California/Oregon). Public comment is welcome; if you’ve never been to a DRB meeting before, here’s the city’s guide outlining the process.

P.S. For one more layer of public process, an alley vacation – which triggers a different review process that includes the city Design Commission and City Council – would be involved in the plan, too.

47 Replies to "4755 Fauntleroy development: 1st look at street-level 'concepts'"

  • Todd September 17, 2012 (2:05 pm)

    This location used to be on my paper route – before it was part of Huling. No way to stop the wheels of progress, but I do support this project more than the 2 that are about to start in the heart of the Junction – plenty of parking for all apartments planned and plenty more for businesses and easily walkable to the Junction without contributing to the “canyon” effect and loss of sunlight…

  • hopey September 17, 2012 (2:08 pm)

    I was kinda hoping a new Safeway would go in that building! The Jefferson Square one is pretty tired.

  • Jeff September 17, 2012 (2:35 pm)

    As a self described yuppie, I’m liking the way the drawings depict the space. I would be happy seeing the spot having a “village” like atmosphere (think whistler, but with apartments instead of hotels). Sadly, I can imagine the construction quality will be on the low end.

  • higgins September 17, 2012 (2:35 pm)

    Hoo boy, let the complaints about increased traffic begin!

  • datamuse September 17, 2012 (3:01 pm)

    This looks nice. Though almost anything would compared to what’s there now!

  • JS September 17, 2012 (3:05 pm)

    No problems with traffic. No cars will be allowed for these new residents. Just walking shoes and bikes. Cars to be banned by Mayor McBike.

    • WSB September 17, 2012 (3:09 pm)

      As noted in the story, at least 530 parking spaces are proposed. There is no city law against parking. Developers could put in a thousand spaces if they wanted. As long as it fits within height/massing rules. The only city ordinance regarding parking is a minimum number, which depending on how close you are to transit and a few other factors, can be as low as zero.

  • Sue September 17, 2012 (3:28 pm)

    I’m surprised to hear they’re in talks with a grocer, with Safeway and QFC within a few blocks, not to mention Trader Joe’s. And Thriftway only a mile away. Unless it’s a specialty grocer (like Whole Foods) it seems like overkill.

  • Common September 17, 2012 (3:32 pm)

    It is whole foods.

    • WSB September 17, 2012 (3:53 pm)

      Wouldn’t be surprised, since IF they were going to still find a way to open in West Seattle, this is *almost* the last chunk of heart-of-everything property left, and as noted in previous comment discussions, they had told us even post-“Hole” that they were still looking at West Seattle possibilities…

  • Diane September 17, 2012 (3:39 pm)

    I’m wishing for a Fred Meyer or Uwajimaya, but 50k sf may not be big enough, unless they do like Target and go for city-size smaller store

  • Bonnie September 17, 2012 (3:51 pm)

    Well now that we got our Trader Joe’s there isn’t much left to wish for.

  • Anonymous September 17, 2012 (3:52 pm)

    Seriously we don’t need a whole foods.. We don’t need anymore grocery stores… If we had to get a grocery store I wouldn’t mind a Uwajimaya or H-Mart.

  • skeeter September 17, 2012 (4:18 pm)

    Whole foods? Geez. We don’t need another store selling ice cream for $7 per pint. We need a Fred Meyer or another Target that sells groceries.

  • buddy September 17, 2012 (4:49 pm)

    I’d like to see a Whole Foods. They have good stuff, though expensive.

  • velo_nut September 17, 2012 (5:03 pm)

    Hey… Those cyclists better get some helmets on!

  • Peter on Fantleroy September 17, 2012 (5:39 pm)

    Nice on the 40th side, but I’m really interested to see what the Fauntleroy side will look like since that is what I will see out my window and walking by every day. I love the idea of a pedestrian walk through to break up the block.

  • mike September 17, 2012 (5:53 pm)

    Velo, its depicting real Seattle bicycle commuters. I’d say maybe strap the helmet to the frame and its more realistic.
    I vote for Waji or hmart, even a Ranch99

  • Big G September 17, 2012 (6:20 pm)

    There is more than enough doofs in West Seattle with more than enough disposable income to support a Whole Paycheck. Afterall, Metropolitan Market is 5 minutes from there. Oh the humanity of having to drive one’s Range Rover all the way to Admiral. West Seattle Yuppies deserve a Whole Paycheck.

  • JanS September 17, 2012 (6:31 pm)

    Bicycle commuters that I see always have helmets…it’s the weekend leisure cyclist that I’ve seen lately with no helmets..now..back to the original story, since this hopefully won’t turn into a rant about bicylists.

    I guess I wonder about the size of this complex…350 apartments seems like a huge amount to fill, considering how many others are being built in the near vicinity. Poor island is gonna sink…

  • Junctionite September 17, 2012 (6:37 pm)

    Fred Meyer would be nice, but it seems unlikely because the QFC is so close. Hoping it isn’t a Safeway, this would leave a big , empty hole at Jefferson Square. Whole Foods seems like the best likely option. I won’t do my routine shopping there, but I would shop there for speciality items.

  • Ray West September 17, 2012 (7:09 pm)

    I don’t even recognize the neighborhood I have lived in all my life.

  • Harry Reems September 17, 2012 (7:13 pm)

    Nice place for a Wal-Mart or a good sports bar.

    • WSB September 17, 2012 (7:18 pm)

      HR – In response to a previous comment discussion, the developers have said it absolutely will NOT be Wal-Mart. Just FYI before people who missed the previous story/ies seize on that. – TR

  • SaraJ September 17, 2012 (7:21 pm)

    This looks really nice. Honestly I feel like the Fauntleroy entrance to West Seattle is the biggest eyesore in the community — other neighborhood exits are much prettier (even Delridge).
    It’s just a collection of stop lights, beige advertisements, empty business spaces, and a Taco Time. I would SO welcome something like this. This section should mirror the rest of our beautiful area.

  • Bonnie September 17, 2012 (7:38 pm)

    Maybe Rocksport can move back into the neighborhood.

  • Harry Reems September 17, 2012 (7:40 pm)

    Thanks for the info WSB, one can only dream I guess.
    Nice to see something developing on that property, just wish it was something that more of the community could take advantage of.

  • Wetone September 17, 2012 (8:28 pm)

    350 parking spots ? so that means 150 cars might be able to park and open there doors. But some parking is better than none and in this city like WSB said they could get away with a lot less parking area if any. Also remember their envision, concept drawings very rarely look like the finished project.

  • sarah September 17, 2012 (8:58 pm)

    I say NO to Whole Foods! We got TJs and that’s just right, and with two additional grocery stores within blocks it’s just plain overkill. Some nice family style restaurants would be super welcome.

  • Bonnie September 17, 2012 (9:48 pm)

    Welone, there will be 530 parking spots for 350 units.

  • Walmart September 17, 2012 (10:23 pm)

    I think Renton is more your type of neighborhood. They have a lovely Walmart, and I hope it stays there.

  • Mike September 17, 2012 (11:18 pm)

    I’m game for any decent store that wants to be there which will keep it nice and provide jobs. As much as we might all be annoyed with Whole Foods, they apparently pay better than the other union based grocers. Can’t hate on that.

  • Sue September 18, 2012 (7:04 am)

    I know we’ve established it’s not a WalMart, but I thought WM only build outside of city limits as a rule anyway, so to avoid paying city taxes. Don’t quote me – that’s just something I’d heard (and noticed all WalMarts I’ve seen seem to be just outside city limits).
    I would love for it to be a Whole Foods. I love PCC, but with their smaller size they simply can’t stock certain things I’d like (I’ve asked) and I routinely make trips to WF to get things I can’t get there. To be able to walk 2 blocks to a WF rather than drive 10 miles would be better all around.

  • Don't Be Scared September 18, 2012 (7:41 am)

    Whole Foods is obvious since they WERE planning on being in West Seattle already. It seems a finicky business idea with the concentration of grocery stores in the area. Granted in business terms Whole Foods doesn’t necessarily ‘compete’ against Safeway (different customers largely) and maybe even QFC…mostly PCC and maybe Metropolitan Market. Could we sustain it, probably. I doubt a Hancock Fabrics would manage the rent this place will likely charge.

    As for the apts as a whole…COOL! I’m so glad they’re being built RIGHT on the major artery right next to transit. That makes so much sense. And frankly almost anything will look better than the lovely field of asphalt that’s been there for decades. I know some folks hate change, but I’m sorry, acres of asphalt with cars on them ain’t pretty.

  • Rick September 18, 2012 (8:23 am)


  • sam-c September 18, 2012 (8:34 am)

    didn’t DPD used to have incentives for developers to include car-sharing parking spots or something?

    it seems like with all this new development, more zipcars in west seattle would be good. right now there are only 2.

  • zip line September 18, 2012 (10:01 am)

    Albertsons or Grocery Outlet!

  • Seattlegal September 18, 2012 (10:45 am)

    Great to see that area get cleaned up because it’s such a huge span of space that looks pretty ghetto. I don’t think we need another grocery store, but I’m not sure we even need to worry yet because everything seems to take so long anyway.

  • Mark September 18, 2012 (10:59 am)

    Fuller/Sears is the architect, and they designed the Admiral Safeway building. They are fairly well known for designing mixed-use buildings that incorporate large retailers. It’s definitely an appropriate location for a larger retailer when one considers the impact a larger store would have in the immediate California/Alaska Junction area. I wonder…

  • M September 18, 2012 (11:54 am)

    How about a clothing or department store? Hasn’t been one of those in along time in WS. There are more than enough grocers

  • CMT September 18, 2012 (3:16 pm)

    I would single-handedly support the Whole Foods. :) I love it and go to the one on Interbay at least once a week. Great selection and their house brand is extremely reasonably priced. They also have organic and grass fed beef at competetive prices as well as providing butcher services. I like Trader Joe’s for packaged food but find their produce to be seriously lacking. I often support our West Seattle produce stands and farmers’ market but when you want to do a one stop trip, Whole Foods has everything I want.

  • BeingPB September 19, 2012 (6:22 pm)

    I love our new Trader Joe’s. I will NOT be a Whole Foods customer or a customer of ANY business in West Seattle that is too big and too expensive. I WILL continue to patronize all of our West Seattle small business. What we need in West Seattle, as a few others have mentioned, is a small department store. A “city Target” would be perfect. I would never have to leave the peninsula.

  • Arianna September 20, 2012 (7:24 am)

    Whole Foods, yes! Love it and cannot wait!!!!There will be a lot of people who will shop there, and for people who are complaining,if don’t like it you don’t have to. Have you been at any of the stores?
    Some people are kicking and screaming if anything changes that takes the neighborhood from a ghetto. This area is getting much nicer, and that is good for all of who own properties here (even for the ones who don’t like it).

  • alkijack September 21, 2012 (4:06 pm)

    How many more cars a day will this new project dump onto the Bridge?

  • Philip Mariconda September 22, 2012 (11:40 pm)

    [sarcasm] …and what road/infrastructure improvements will be coming with THIS project??? [/sarcasm]
    But it does seem nice enough and will improve a blighted site.

  • Grocer overload September 23, 2012 (6:27 am)

    Seriously? We don’t need a Whole Paycheck. I haven’t seen PCC mentioned but between them, Trader Joe’s and the main grocers (Safeway and QFC), we have enough variety right here in our hood. I grew up in the suburbs of a large city and was used to driving 5-10 miles to get to the store. Look at the variety we ALREADY have within a 5 mile radius! Crazy!!

  • Mike F October 5, 2012 (12:02 pm)

    There IS a Target in West Seattle…

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