DESIGN REVIEW: Harbor/30th project clears 2nd phase

September 20, 2019 3:10 pm
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 |   Development | West Seattle news

The 32-unit townhouse/rowhouse project at 3257 Harbor SW and adjacent Harbor/30th addresses won final Southwest Design Review Board approval last night, 2 1/2 years (and a complete board turnover) after its first hearing. Notes from WSB’s Patrick Sand, after the design packets:

The project – one building with 15 units and 15 offstreet parking spaces, one with 17/17 – will go forward with some conditions, the board (with all 5 members present) decided:

– Massing is OK as is, but study the possibility of changing floor heights to add stoops with steps on the Harbor SW side.

– Make sure solid-waste containers are screened as shown in drawings.

– Find different materials for the retaining wall on the property. The rough wood shown in renderings is not in keeping with the look of the site.

– Find different materials for the Harbor side.

– Get with SDOT about the street-facing portion to do something that would bring more planting and less paving. Also find ways to better demarcate what is the public walkthrough (bisecting what’s technically 2 projects in 1) vs. the private areas.

Overall, the board thought the changes made since the 2017 review were good. Architect Steve Fischer said that the massing was a concern from 2017 and that was changed. Another change – instead of the previous proposal for each unit to have its own solid-waste receptacles, now large shared containers are planned, and they’ll be the responsibility of a homeowners’ association.

Fisher also talked at length about the improvements the proposal would bring to 30th SW on the west side of the building. The space immediately adjacent to one side would get both a curb and
sidewalk along with landscaping. The other would get a curb. Parking would be allowed on both sides.

While the board had no major concerns about how the back of the buildings facing onto 30th looked, they did have concerns about the Harbor side. That led to the condition that the units facing Harbor have distinct entries visible from the street, which in turn led to their condition to study how the space between floors on that side can be compressed to allow for stoops with steps to match the 30th side.

Fischer noted that the area was zoned in 1957 as a mostly commercial space. While the two buildings have been proposed strictly as residential, the board said they’d like to see the developer consider some exterior materials that might enhance the look of the Harbor side.

Next step: The city planner assigned to the project, Sean Conrad, writes his report, and the project pursues its final land-use approval. You can comment by email:

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