By Meghan Hall
Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood has been growing steadily in recent years and has become one of the City’s top entertainment districts, with its prominent nightlife and wide array of trendy coffee shops and restaurants. A new high-density, mixed-use project located on the Southeast corner of Pine Street and 14th Avenue received approval from the East Design Review Board to move beyond the Early Design Guidance Phase at the end of September 2018, which will bring additional housing to the bustling neighborhood. The proposal, submitted by Pine Tar LLC and Seattle-based developer and architecture firm Revolve, would build a four-story, 78-unit apartment building on the existing site located at 1320 East Pine Street.
According to John Schack, a founding member and principal at Revolve, the review board was supportive of the proposed design and only had a few requests.
“Overall, they appreciated our approach to a challenging infill site,” said Schack. “They wanted to see further development of [the] courtyard, roof deck and other exterior spaces as we move along into the process, but thought that our proposed design was innovative and would be a welcome addition to the neighborhood.”
The building would total 65,171 square feet and also include 1,758 square feet of commercial space and 29 below-grade parking stalls. A large amenity space will sit at the center of the future development, while the roof deck will be located on the North and West edges of the courtyard.
“When we consider the quality of a residential unit, we are first and foremost concerned about providing ample access to natural light and fresh air to each residence,” said Schack about the team’s design process. “Using that as our primary focus, we designed the project around a generous courtyard, providing those interior units with a dedicated access to those precious resources and further enhancing the experience of the resident.”
However, the design team also had to take into account the location of the project site in its design. The site is right on the border of two differently-zoned areas: the Northern portion of the site borders an area zoned for multifamily development, while the site itself—and the area immediately surrounding it to the South, East and West—are zoned for neighborhood commercial uses.
While other developments close to the project site are larger multi-family, mid-rise multi-family and two-story commercial buildings, low-rise buildings immediately surround the project. Revolve’s design proposal incorporates upper-level setbacks to allow for a better transition to smaller buildings surrounding the site. The design team hopes that modulated walls will break up the massing of the building.
Revolve’s design for the project will include a modular façade and simple massing, with a neutral color palette. Metal handrails, concrete patios and stairs, metal panels and aluminum storefronts will also be incorporated into the design. The metal—per the design team’s concept—will work as accents and provide contrast to cedar siding and large windows that will be used throughout the development.
The design team will apply for a Master Use Permit and submit updated plans to the City of Seattle in the coming months as part of the next phase of the approvals process.