Two projects slated to come before the East Design Review Board Wednesday night are probably good examples of the types of projects we’ll see in Central Seattle in the next waves of development. One in the heart of Capitol Hill’s “eclectic” 15th Ave E neighborhood is relatively small and will be widget-ed into a space between buildings where a parking lot is currently found. The other is an enormous investment from a massive name in Seattle development that threatens/promises to completely transform an area passed by in the most recent waves of explosive development.
Here’s what Vulcan’s first mixed-use foray into the transformation of Yesler Terrace will look like:
The corner expression at the south (Yesler) provides a strong identity marking the corner of Yesler and Broadway. The base features a retail space with a plaza for spill-out dining. The extra width provided by the plaza will allow for increased pedestrian traffic at this important intersection.
It’s going to be huge.
Land Use Application to allow a 7-story, 193 unit apartment building with one live-work unit and 2,232 sq. ft. of retail at ground level. Parking for 133 vehicles will be located within the structure. Existing buildings to be demolished. View Design Proposal (22 MB)
In May, CHS reported on a set of twin projects Vulcan is undertaking as part of a wave of development of the Yesler Terrace housing projects. Together, the First Hill Streetcar-adjacent projects will create 400 apartment units, some 10,000 or more square feet of commercial space and parking for something between 250 and 310 vehicles. The 123 Broadway project is the first to move forward after May’s successful reviews (PDF) for the duo.
The projects will replace a set of 11 two-story apartment buildings that provide low-income housing as part of Seattle Housing Authority’s original, 1940s-built Yesler Terrace development. The SHA selected Vulcan —
with an assist from Capitol Hill Housing providing guidance for the affordable housing component of the proposal — to be the major private developer driving the Yesler Terrace Redevelopment Plan. UPDATE: A representatives from Capitol Hill Housing tells CHS that the nonprofit did not end up working with Vulcan on the project. “SHA and Vulcan could not come to terms over land value and so the master development team concept was nixed and SHA decided to be their own master developer,” the representative said.
Vulcan was under contract to purchase three blocks within the Yesler Terrace properties for $22.1 million. As part of the agreement, Vulcan will make 20% of the more than 600 apartment units in the three planned projects available as affordable housing, for only renters earning up to 80% of the area’s median income. The rest will be offered at “market rate.”
“Our goal is to design a project that balances social, economic, and environmental interests through developing healthy community, healthy buildings and healthy residents,” the “project vision” for the Runberg Architecture Group-designed buildings reads.
121 15th Ave E
The credit union may have shuttered on 15th Ave E but it doesn’t look like the building Salal called home is coming down for the four-story development planned to replace it just yet.
Instead, Wednesday night, the design review board will get its first look at a plan to squeeze in a four-story, 34-unit development into the space currently filled by the empty credit union building’s surface parking lot.
“The objective of this development is to improve the 15th Avenue Corridor area of Capitol Hill through the addition of a 4-story Mixed-use development which will contribute economically, socially and culturally to the existing urban fabric,” the design proposal created by Caron Architecture reads.
The credit union building and parking lot were purchased for $2.5 million this spring by developer Isola Homes, according to King County Records. The Salal branch has since relocated to First Hill.
The Isola project planned for the parking lot portion of the property is envisioned as “two contrasting volumes that relate to the different characters of the neighborhood.”
The concept of this design option is to create two contrasting volumes that relate to the different characters of the neighborhood surrounding the site. Volume “A” represents a warmer expression that relates to the smaller scale residential character of the neighborhood and helps to setup a character for the access easement to the South. Volume “B” represents a cooler expression that shields volume “A” from the larger commercial scale of the neighborhood to the North while providing a distinct transition in scale and edge definition with critical mass to the block.
A – Warm Mass that represents the transition to the more residential end of the street.
B – Cold Mass that represents the transition to the more commercial side of the street.
The project is planned to create 36 units averaging 651 square feet, a 1,200-square-foot commercial space, and parking for 16 bicycles. No parking for motor vehicles is required — or planned.
121 15TH Ave
Design review early design guidance for a four story, 34 unit apartment building with ground floor retail. View Design Proposal (5 MB)