By Meghan Hall
The Seattle metropolitan area has seen little for-sale multifamily housing produced since The Great Recession, in part due to the cost of construction and the legal hurdles developers must jump through in order to bring a project to fruition. Bellevue-based Quadrant Homes, however, is working to bring multiple townhome communities to the Puget Sound region, one of which is its proposed 116-unit development in the Haller Lake neighborhood 20 minutes north of downtown Seattle. Quadrant, in conjunction with Los Angeles-based KTGY and Weisman Design Group, presented its plans to the Northwest Design Review Board in May, and received promising feedback from the community.
Located at 1230 Stone Ave. N., the 4.12-acre site is currently developed with Lincoln Towing, a vehicle tow and storage site at the intersection of Aurora Ave. N. and N. 125th St. The goal, states Quadrant in design documents, is to serve as a catalyst for development in the southern part of the neighborhood.
“The objective is to transform the underutilized tow yard parcel by replacing it with a high
quality, mixed use development that will create more engaging, urban streetscapes within
the neighborhood,” states design documents. “The proposed design will provide residents with commercial opportunity, amenities, open spaces, quick access to public transit, nearby trails,
and neighborhood-serving commercial on Aurora and Linden.”
The complex will include 113 residential units and 3 live/work units adjacent to Aurora Ave., as well as 154 residential parking stalls in garages. The units will be a mix of two- to three-bedroom units. Updated plans will allow for private patios and a plaza in the center of the development. A fitness center at Stone Ave. N. and N. 125th will also be included in the development. No information could be found on Quadrant’s site about the development or the price of individual units when complete.
Several different building typologies will be used throughout the development with buildings comprised of different heights and different numbers of units. The smallest buildings will stand three stories tall and contain six residential units, while the largest will be four stories and contain ten townhomes. Buildings with live/work spaces within them will be three- to four-story split-level buildings with four residential units and two live/work units.
According to design documents, the proposed buildings will be clad in a mix of gray composite roofing, light fiber cement board, and blue or gray fiber cement v-groove siding.
The Board was generally supportive of the design of the project, and it appreciated the different building typologies and massing variations found throughout the development. The Board also appreciated the inclusion of the outdoor amenity area and plaza, which will anchor a major pedestrian connection from the interior of the site to N. 125th St.
The Board also made several suggestions, recommending the relocation of the fitness center, as it would be disconnected from primary circulation pathways throughout the development. The Board was also concerned that the buildings, although varied in massing and scale, would be clad in the same materials, and suggested broadening the materials palette.
With these suggestions in mind, the Board recommended the approval of the project, with several conditions, which include moving the fitness center and exploring the maintenance of additional high-quality materials to differentiate between buildings. The Board also made minor suggestions regarding the use of bollard lighting and raised sidewalks to further connect pedestrian pathways and increased way-finding.
Now that design approval has been secured, Quadrant can move forward with the remaining steps of the planning process and proceed with bringing some much-needed for-sale units to market.