Mixed-use PCC development faces third round of review, Madison Valley residents still not satisfied

Will these proposed townhouse-style units be enough for Dewey Pl E?

Will these proposed townhouse-style units be enough for Dewey Pl E?

Developers behind the proposed E Madison PCC mixed-use development will return Wednesday night for a rare third round of early design review. Their new plan shaves off a few apartment units and 11% of the project’s parking to make room for a new row of townhouses on the development’s backside in a bid to satisfy nearby residents concerned the building won’t mesh with the single-family style homes destined to sit across from the four-story development’s backside.

It won’t be enough. Here is a copy of one of dozens of letters sent to the review board by residents:screen-shot-2017-01-25-at-6-22-36-am

screen-shot-2017-01-25-at-6-22-48-am

With delays in the development project set to replace it, City People’s will stick around through 2017. The longtime owners of City People’s and its unusually large tract of E Madison land have said the decision to sell came with hope that the partners have put the property into the right hands after watching with surprise and disappointment when they previously sold their 15th Ave E home only to see a Walgreens rise on the property. But nearby residents in Madison Valley, it seems. might never get over the deal.

What about the review board? Developer Velmeir and architects at Meng Strazzara will need to convince the reviewers that their proposal to drop apartment units and cut around 16 parking spaces to add a row of townhouses as well as “residential style” windows to parking garage level set to face Dewey Place E is enough to finally put the project over the “early design guidance” hump. The developer will also make the case to keep its plan for splitting loading dock access to E Madison and shopper and resident parking access to Dewey.

Design review: 2925 E Madison

In October, the Save Madison Valley group rejoiced when the design review board kicked the project back for a second time. The front of the project and the planned 25,000+ square-foot grocery haven’t been the focus of debates around the development. E Madison is being positioned as a busy transit corridor by the city and developments nearby along the street aren’t at the scale of the new project but include multi-story apartment and condo buildings. The problem has remained the part of the project that marks where the street’s density seeps onto the single family home-lined streets below Madison. “The Dewey transition,” one member of the design review board said in October, “is not as sensitive as it needs to be.”

With the latest proposal, residents in the area have pushed back on what would have been a large concrete parking garage wall and a plan that depended heavily on “natural vines” to make it look less like a large concrete parking garage wall. Wednesday, the board will have to decide if there is anything more the developer can do.

Meanwhile, on Capitol Hill…
Wednesday’s design review doubleheader includes what could and should be the final session for the long-planned Kelly Springfield office and retail building on 11th Ave:

Design review: 1525 11th Ave

What Capitol Hill’s new Kelly Springfield office building will look like

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15 thoughts on “Mixed-use PCC development faces third round of review, Madison Valley residents still not satisfied

  1. never thought i’d be saying this but props to the developers for actually responding to the feedback and greatly improving the project

  2. A garage entrance keeps you from walking your dog? Please… These NIMBYs are drunk with power. I think the developer has jumped through sufficient hurdles. Time to green-light this project.

  3. Let’s see a grocery store and more housing in Seattle, how awful. I hope they just build a strip mall with a vape store, porn shop and a McDonalds. The people against this live in Madison Park and are afraid the renters are starting to get close to them.

  4. I live a couple of blocks from this proposed development and the NIMBYism around here just makes me sick. “Save Madison Valley,” my ass – what we need around here is MORE of this kind of development. These obnoxious obstructionists ARE the threat Madison Valley needs to be saved from. Unfortunately, the city’s design review process grants a lot of power to all their whining and complaining.

    • Unbunch your panties. Folks became massively involved in what is the entire purpose of the design review process, with great results. Kudos to them. The new design is a VAST improvement. (And I too live a block from the site.)

    • “Great results” except for the part where it’s been delayed month after month while the designers had to go round and round trying to appease the complainers, which adds to the cost and slows down the pace of progress. I’d rather have less design review and more development. This is a city, is it not?

  5. I would like to clarify that, as a Madison Valley resident, a lot of us in the neighborhood were in favor of this project from the start. There is a lot of support and people were excited about a PCC (as opposed to yet another nail salon or chocolate shop, which we have gobs of). It’s the small group of vocal anti’s that have managed to drag this out, just like they tried with several of the 3-4 story apartment buildings along Madison over the past few years.

  6. I’m fine with the project but why in the world do these out of town developers hire Strazzara for the architecture? So many better choices in Seattle.

  7. I live in Madison Valley (within sight of the proposed PCC) and I think the continued rejection has gone too far. Nice that the community has input in the design, but a few dozen highly local neighbors still rejecting the much improved design? NIMBY to the extreme. I thought about the consequences (and benefits!) of buying a house next to a major thoroughfare that is zoned commercial. I am feeling frustrated with the folks that want to pretend they live in a quiet suburb. I agree with the commenter that pointed out this is a city. Onward and upward.

  8. JS – Please stop saying things like “to satisfy nearby residents concerned the building won’t mesh with the single-family style homes destined to sit across from the four-story development’s backside.” The development is not 4 stories on the Dewey side, it’s considerably larger. That’s the whole point. The people on Dewey will be some 27 (23?) feet from a 6 story building. That said, the new design is a vast improvement over “here, Dewey residents, stare at a 6 story cement wall venting a parking garage.”