Design review: 19 new townhomes on 12th Ave E, 111 units on 10th Ave — UPDATE

Much has been made of the condo revival of 2018 but on Capitol Hill over the past decade, the king of new home ownership has been the townhouse. Wednesday night, a project destined to create 19 more of the homes along 12th Ave E will take what could be its final pass in front of the design review board.

Design review: 506 12th Ave E

The project to turn the land currently home to the six-unit Lance Apartments at 506 12th Ave E has been in motion since developer Isola Homes bought the land in 2016 for $3.5 million. Ownership has passed across a couple Isola-related LLCs over the years including a transaction in the King County records that shows one Isola-related LLC buying the property from another for $5.3 million in July 2018. Seems like a good deal. The project is now set up for development company Mirra Homes to create four, three-story townhomes featuring a total of 19 units and parking for 19 vehicles.

UPDATE: Sorry for the confusion. CHS mistakenly uploaded the wrong set of renderings for this project when first posted. We have updated the post with the proper set of graphics. Sorry for the error. 

With a design from SHW Cone Architecture, the project moved out of early design review in April 2017 with the East Design Review Board signing off on the early proposals for massing and architectural relationship to the surrounding 12th Ave neighborhood and “applicant’s conceptual material palette that included white brick along the street facing units with black window trim.” The board’s concerns at the time were around the development’s elevations in relationship to surrounding buildings — some higher and looking down on the future project’s future roofs — and uncertainty about a proposal on allowing smaller setbacks for the upper units. Stoops for the street-level units along 12th Ave, meanwhile, were praised.

216 10th Ave
Part of Wednesday night’s East Design Review Board double header will be a second go on a first round review for yet another project in the redevelopment of the neighborhoods surrounding Yesler Terrace. The 10th Ave Flats from real estate investor Sammy Lee, developer Vertical, and Pondera Architecture will create a six-story, 111-unit apartment building along 10th Ave in exchange for… ok, preservationists and general lovers or charm, please look away… these three old homes:

Lee scored two of the homes in a 2016 deal for $2.25 million after adding the duplex to his holdings in 2012 for $835,000.

While it’s sad to say goodbye to the old homes, in addition to trading the three old structures for 111 new apartment units, the developer is also planning the project with zero parking. “The site location allows easy access via walking or biking to restaurants, coffee shops, grocery stores, retail, and green spaces,” the project writeup reads. “The project is located in on area with access to several public transit routes. Areas along Broadway and 12th Ave are relatively flat and features bicycle only lanes, making access even easier.”

The writing has been on the wall. The rest of the block is home to two more recently construction six-story structures: the Alder Flats and the Reverb Apartments.

In May, the board rejected the development’s first proposal, supporting public comment that said the project didn’t fit into the neighborhood. The board told the project leads they needed to “further development of a façade composition that responds to the scale and rhythm of the existing neighborhood context and single family residences that are proposed to be demolished.” With the rest of the block reaching six-story heights and a revised design, we’ll see if the board is more open to the project this time around.

Design review: 216 10th Ave


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