Trammell Crow Company is aiming to add additional office space to Seattle’s Denny Triangle neighborhood. Last week, the company met with Seattle’s Downtown Design Review Board for an Early Design Guidance meeting. During the meeting, the design team shared plans for an 11-story office project, which ultimately received approval from the board to move onto the next step in the review process.
Located at 901 Lenora St., the project is designed by Perkins + Will. According to plans presented by the architecture firm, the project would total 305,000 square feet and include parking for 178 vehicles. In total, the building would provide 220,000 square feet of above grade commercial office space with ground floor retail space and around 85,000 square feet of underground parking.
During the meeting, the design team shared three massing options for the building. The first, Option A, requires no modulation and therefore requests no departures from code. However, the proposal shows it also requires the removal of an established honey locust tree on Lenora Street and lacks open space at the ground floor level.
Option B, on the other hand, requires a departure from code for an upper level setback at 9th & Lenora Street. This modulation would create better scale, according to project plans. Option B also allows for the preservation of the tree on Lenora Street.
Option C, however, was presented as the design team’s preferred option and was also preferred by the review board. The preferred option also requires a departure from code for the same upper level setback as proposed in Option B, offering the same scale and added interest. Additionally, the preferred option also accommodates a stronger pedestrian experience and a stronger vertical expression at the corner.
“Option C uses vertical modulation to emphasize the corner and to create better design through a series of carves and lifts in the podium and provides continuous retail on both streets at the corner,” Erik Mott, principal and design director at Perkins + Will, said.
According to project plans, Option C enhances the overall landscaping, which is being designed by Weisman Design Group. Through the preferred option, landscaping would move upward through the building with multiple green space opportunities created due to the building’s scaling.
“We see the streetscape as an open space that plays an integral part of the greater green street network within the Denny neighborhood. We are seeking to create a multi-functional streetscape experience that enhances connectivity within the neighborhood, builds community and strengthens environmental resiliency, Anchored by the preserved honey locust street tree,” said Gar-Yun Ho, senior associate at Weisman Design Group.
Overall, the board approved of the project, moving it forward to a recommendation hearing. The board noted its appreciation for the variety of the three massing concepts presented and how they all fit into the larger neighborhood context.
In selecting the preferred option, the board also supported the choice to keep the existing established tree by stepping back the building. In general, the board was approving of the landscape designs and the work done to compliment the green streets on Lenora and 9th.
While generally supportive of the project continuing ahead, the board requested to see further studies on how the departure would affect the site and surrounding properties. The board also noted it would like to see additional renderings and details about lighting, materials and other more detailed aspects of the project during the recommendation phase.