12th Ave auto shop will make way for apartment and restaurant development

Servicing BMWs, Volvos, and Jaguars on Capitol Hill was good business for the last 46 years or so. Selling the property home to your 12th Ave auto service garage to make way for development of a five-story, 61-unit, mixed-use apartment building planned to feature “sun screens,” a streetfront restaurant, and “a generously planted” courtyard? Probably even better business.

The longtime 12th and E Olive St. fixture Car Tender will be moving out in the next year or so but the design review process for the new building that will replace it begins this week.

On Wednesday, the East Design Review Board will hear about a proposed mixed-use five-story 61-unit apartment planned for the corner of 12th Ave and E Olive St where auto shop Car Tender currently sits.

Design review: 1208 E Olive St

Car Tender owners Russell Kimble and John McDermott declined to comment on the sale and the development. The company claims a pedigree reaching back to the early 1970s. The version of the company owned by Kimble and McDermott was registered with the state in 1999. According to Car Tender’s website, the company has been servicing European cars including BMW, Volkswagen, Volvo, Mercedes-Benz, Jaguar, Land Rover, and others, in the city since 1971. Through various platforms, online reviewers have given the business an average of about four stars for its service. Its candy dish game is also apparently on point. Continue reading

Trading 14 for 50, six stories planned on Broadway to add to Capitol Hill Station wave

On Broadway, across from busy Capitol Hill Station, nobody sensible is going to complain about a six-story building with 50 new apartment units replacing a three-story building with only 14. Until rents slow down or, even, dip, the market needs the inventory. Some will say build it higher. Tell the HALA folks about that.

But progress on Broadway will mean change for the people living above the street in the old apartment building and a much-loved Capitol Hill favorite, below. When the old 1905-built Capitol Crest apartment building is demolished, Annapurna and her neighbors will need to find new homes. We say, in the meantime, eat at (CHS advertiser!) Annapurna often. And head around the corner to Ace Barbershop for a haircut. Perhaps Wednesday night before you take your full belly and new hairdo to the first design review for the six-story, 50-unit mixed-use building set to rise on Broadway next to Capitol Hill Station’s west entrance.

Design review: 1833 Broadway

The Roger Newell-designed project is being envisioned as a mix of 50 apartment units including 400-square-foot studios up to 936-square-foot two-bedroom models above 3,500 square feet of space for a store… or a restaurant. Continue reading

Net-zero energy project will connect to an uprooted house behind Broadway Hill Park

Screen Shot 2016-08-08 at 4.32.59 PMWe have seen old houses relocated to make space for a new apartment building, but linking the two structures to create a single property may be a first on Capitol Hill. Retrofitting the house and designing the new apartment building to meet some of the strictest environmental standards in the U.S. is definitely a first.

The unique plans for 11th and Republican Passive House Apartments faces another round of design review Wednesday night. The outcome of the meeting also carries a special significance for the neighborhood as the building will serve as the new backdrop to the recently opened Broadway Hill Park.

(Image: CHS)

(Image: CHS)

Continue reading

Capitol Hill height for sale: Developer of 95 Slide building buying right to build higher

Screen Shot 2016-07-11 at 8.06.30 PM

Here's what it would look like if they were forced to preserve 95 Slide

Here’s what it would look like if they were forced to preserve 95 Slide

Capitol Hill developers do not have to preserve the neighborhood’s oldest buildings to reap the construction benefits that come with that preservation — they can buy those perks, too, as Johnson Carr plans to do for its planned seven-story development at the corner of Pike and Harvard. Someday, you might call it the 95 Slide building. Kids will look at you like you’re old and crazy. That’s the Pike Flats building, old timer. The preservation perks without preservation plan will be on the table Wednesday night as the East Design Review Board takes what will likely be its final look at the project.

John Feit, chair of the Pike/Pine Urban Neighborhood Council, said transferring development rights is analogous to moving apples around from basket to basket. “Melrose Market paid for the ability to create an extra floor, they just didn’t,” said Feit. Instead, the developers of the Capitol Hill retail project are selling that right to Johnson Carr. Continue reading

Design reviews: 30 stories on First Hill, 6 off E Madison

Destined to rise above First Hill at 800 Columbia

Destined to rise above First Hill at 800 Columbia

Fans of skyscrapers will enjoy one part of the design reviews slated to come before the East Design Review Board Wednesday night. They might scoff at the other.

A 30-story residential tower destined for 8th and Columbia on First Hill will finish the night Wednesday but not before the board — and some concerned neighbors — have their say on a proposed project at 20th and Madison that is seeking a, gasp, contract rezone from the area’s 40-foot limit to a whopping 65 feet… hey, skyscraper folks, stop giggling. Continue reading

Design review overhaul: Rule on fewer projects, put meetings online, split Capitol Hill at Pine


Screen Shot 2016-05-04 at 2.19.56 PMSeattle’s process for gathering public and expert feedback on new building designs is poised to undergo the most significant update since it was established in 1994. For starters, we may be saying goodbye to the East Design Review Board.

Under changes proposed by a 16-member advisory group to Seattle’s design review program, the East DRB jurisdiction, which covers Capitol Hill, would be sliced between three new areas in order to lump the neighborhood’s high-rise zones with a new Central DRB that would also cover First Hill. Capitol Hill would be divided along E Pine, with the north half coming under a new Northeast DRB and the south half going to a new Southeast DRB.

“I think it makes sense that there be a more high-rise focused designed review board,” said Amanda Bryan, member of the Central Area Land Use Advisory Committee who also sat on the advisory panel. “I think (the boundaries) will move around depending on how people feel about it.” Continue reading

Design review: holding the corners at 19th and Mercer and the Piecora’s building

Screen Shot 2016-04-12 at 5.31.50 PM

View of the planned project on the northwest corner of 19th and Mercer building from Talulah’s patio. (Image: Public47 Architects)

It is out with the old and in with the new at the site of two planned Capitol Hill developments entering their final phase of design review Wednesday night. The original Piecora’s building at 14th and Madison was demolished last year and a big, old cedar tree at 19th and Mercer is on deck to come down in order to make way for two new mixed-used projects that will add a total of 172 market-rate units to the neighborhood.

The projects going before the East Design Review Board will also be adding highly visible commercial spaces on bustling corners, though there are no clues yet as to who might be moving in.

1830 E Mercer St. 

Land Use Application to allow a 5-story structure containing 32 apartment units and 2,260 sq. ft. of retail at street level. Parking for 10 vehicles to be provided below grade and surface parking for 2 at the alley. Existing structure is to remain.
View Design Proposal  (26 MB)
Review Meeting: April 13, 2016 6:30 PM, Seattle University, 901 12th Ave, STCN Student Center 130
Review Phase: REC–Recommendation  See All Reviews
Project Number: 3020860  View Permit Status  |  View Land Use Notice
Planner: Beth Hartwick

First up will be the five-story apartment building with 32 market rate units planned for the northwest corner of 19th and Mercer. The Public47 Architects design calls for a 2,350-square-foot corner commercial storefront and 12 below-grade parking spaces.

Neighbors have been weighing in on the project since CHS first reported on the development plans from property owners Glenn MacDonald and Amanda Twiss last year. While, ahem, creative differences with architects typically top the list of concerns during design review, plans to remove a potentially “exceptional” red cedar tree on the property have drawn strong objections from neighbors.Screen Shot 2016-04-12 at 7.10.16 PM

Screen Shot 2016-04-12 at 7.09.18 PM

Others said they would be sad to see the tree go, but are pleased to have more commercial space added to 19th and Mercer.Screen Shot 2016-04-12 at 5.58.08 PM

Unfortunately, the red cedar will in all likelihood be coming down as part of the plans supported by the design review board in a previous meeting. However, construction will not require the demolition of any existing structures, sparing Monsoon from the cedar’s fate. Continue reading

The Sawant? ‘Small efficiency dwelling’ building on 10th faces review

Screen Shot 2015-12-08 at 4.24.44 PMTwo projects on opposing ends of the affordable housing spectrum will will take their turn before the East Design Review Board Wednesday night. A proposed “small efficiency dwelling unit” project on Capitol Hill and a nonprofit affordable housing project on First Hill would create a combined 129 new studio-style apartments. The two projects will require the demolition of three buildings and a parking lot, adding needed density to their respective sites. Neither project includes commercial space.

120 10th Ave E
The building at the intersection of a surprising number of Capitol Hill narratives is on track to turn another chapter. Most recently used as the headquarters Kshama Sawant’s City Council campaign, a house and an adjacent apartment building near 10th and E John are slated to come down to make way for a 4-story, 49-unit apartment building. Continue reading