Feb. 7th Early Design Meeting for 8-Story Uptown Development

By Joe Veyera

Plans for an eight-story mixed-use building in Uptown — kitty-corner from Counterbalance Park — are scheduled to go before the West Design Review Board next month.

An Early Design Guidance meeting on the proposal at 631 Queen Anne Ave. N. is scheduled for Feb. 7 at 6:30 p.m. at the Queen Anne Community Center (1901 1st Ave. W.)

Real estate development firm Vibrant Cities is behind the project, and has tabbed Jackson | Main Architecture for the design, which currently calls for 95 apartments and 5,000 square feet of ground-level retail.

The breakdown of residential units in the preferred option calls for 21 studios, 14 open one-bedroom, 40 classic one-bedroom, and 20 two-bedroom apartments. Parking for 20 vehicles would be provided.

The existing structure — now home to Manhattan Express — would be demolished. As part of the Uptown rezone passed by the city council last October, the site was included in a small area north of Seattle Center, that saw maximum building heights more than double from 40 to 85 feet.

For more information on the proposal, view the Early Design Guidance packet. Syndicated from The Queen Anne News.

Watch Seattle’s Growth Over the Past 3 Years

By Laura Fonda

The Space Needle PanoCam went live in January 2015 to snap images of Seattle from the spire of the Needle every 10 minutes. Now, a new time-lapse video uses the PanoCam images to illustrate Seattle’s growth in the past 3 years – and it’s pretty impressive. According to GeekWire, Ricardo Martin Brualla, a Google engineer, made the video with thousands of photographs from the PanoCam,

South Lake Union undergoes the most transformation, but time-lapses of downtown and Uptown have considerable upward movement as well. Essentially, it’s a 360 degree view of how the city has grown in the past couple of years, and it’s grown a lot:

Syndicated from QueenAnneView.com

Design Review Approves Plan for 2 Apartment Buildings on Old Teatro ZinZanni Site

By Joe Veyera

The next act for the former site of Teatro ZinZanni is one step closer to reality, after development plans received approval from the West Design Review Board in a recommendation meeting on Wednesday night.

The project at 225 Roy St. includes one eight-story and one seven-story building with 269 apartments, just over 9,000 square feet of retail space at street-level, and underground parking for approximately 180 vehicles. Earlier plans had called for two eight-story structures, but neighbors along Roy Street had expressed concern about what that building height would mean for natural light in their apartments.

Developer Maria Barrientos said public feedback had, “a really strong influence,” on the design, with more than 20 meetings and presentations to various community groups over the last year and a half.

To that end, public comment Wednesday was almost unanimously in favor of the plan, with Uptown Alliance co-president Rick Hooper calling the process a “great model” for how a community can engage with developers.

“This site could have been a mundane project in the hands of somebody else,” said one attendee.

The proposal is also one of the first to account for building height increases allowed under a neighborhood rezone passed by the city council in October. The site is included in a small area north of Seattle Center that saw maximum heights more than double from 40 to 85 feet.

Board member Homero Nishiwaki acknowledged that as one of the challenges the project faced.

“It’s a very big project,” he said. “It’s not just big, it’s also very prominent, and it deals with a transitional period where a new code, a new height is being implemented.”

Nishiwaki — the lone holdover on the board from the project’s early design guidance meeting in April — said he felt many of the recommendations made at that time were incorporated into the updated design.

Among the elements to earn the board’s praise was the public plaza planned directly off Mercer Street (though its included in a separate permit) — something landscape architect Kris Snider of Hewitt said “put a stamp on this project,” as a commitment to the community — along with the high quality of materials proposed throughout the site as well.

Ultimately, the board gave its okay for the plans with a trio of conditions, one regarding the “gasket” that separates the massing volumes for the building along Third Avenue, and a second for material consistency throughout the project.

The third condition was the removal of a glass and steel weather protection canopy between the two buildings, which the board felt made the interior courtyard seem more like a private space than a public area.

“This is a public thoroughfare,” said board member Stephen Porter of the walkway down the middle of the site, connecting Mercer and Roy.

The board also approved a pair of zoning departures, one to allow for a continuous vertical façade along Roy Street — instead of an upper-level set-back — and a second allowing for a steeper driveway slope for the underground parking entrance.

The latter request drew questions from the board about its necessity, and what the alternative would be if the departure were denied.

Barrientos explained the entrance accounts for traffic entering and exiting the Mercer Street Garage, and that planned retail space at the corner of Third Avenue North and Mercer would be affected.

“We can’t keep the retail on Mercer at the grade it’s at without doing this,” she said.

That rationale was enough to earn the board’s approval by a 3-1 vote.

The plan now awaits the final published decision from the Seattle Department of Construction & Inspections, after which a master use permit will be issued.

For more information on the development, and a full list of project documents, visit web6.seattle.gov/dpd/edms and enter project number 3025946. 

Syndicated from QueenAnneNews.com

Queen Anne Events: Things to Do in January

Things are slowing down in the New Year, but there are still some interesting Queen Anne events to attend and/or participate in coming up in January…

January 7: Scandinavian Pancake Breakfast
8am – 1pm | Swedish Club NW
The Swedish Club NW’s monthly pancake breakfast features an authentic Swedish pancake breakfast complete with ham, lingonberries and all of the fixings. This month, it will take place on January 7th, with live music TBD. The price is $9 for adults, $7 for club members and $5 for children ages 5-12.

January 13 – 27: Così fan Tutte
10am – 6pm | McCaw Hall
The Seattle Opera presents Così fan Tutte, a comedic and beautiful performance that features some of the most ravishing music of Mozart. The story is about two men who decide to test their fiancees’ faithfulness by donning disguises and attempting to tempt them. Performances are scattered throughout January, between the 13th and 27th.

January 15: Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
9am – 4pm | Seattle Children’s Museum
The Seattle Children’s Museum is celebrating the work of Martin Luther King, Jr. on Monday, January 15th with a day full of special programs that emphasize collaboration, social justice and equity.

January 26: All Beet Dinner Pop-Up
6:30pm – 10pm | The Bite Box
Chef Aaron Tekulve from The Bite Box is presenting a special pop-up dinner to feature some delicious dishes with beets as the star ingredient. Tickets are $95 per person—reserve your space ahead of time to ensure your seat!