Home AEC GMD Development Plans 184-Unit Affordable Housing Complex in Seattle’s Northgate Neighborhood

GMD Development Plans 184-Unit Affordable Housing Complex in Seattle’s Northgate Neighborhood

GMD Development, Seattle, Victory Northgate, AXIS/GFA Architecture + Design, San Francisco, Puget Sound, Northgate Shopping Center, Kraken Community Iceplex, Northgate Public Library, Northgate Community Center, Watershed Renton, Renton

By Kate Snyder

A real estate development firm dedicated to bringing affordable housing to the Pacific Northwest and surrounding regions has its sights set on its home city of Seattle. GMD Development is proposing a 184-unit apartment complex called Victory Northgate in the city’s Northgate neighborhood, according to project plans. City records show that early design guidance for the project was completed last year and currently the proposal’s construction and land use applications are under review.

Alongside the developer GMD Development, other members of the project team include AXIS/GFA Architecture + Design, which is based in San Francisco.

Located at 1020 NE Northgate Way, the project would comprise a seven-story mixed-use multifamily residential structure that would include commercial retail space, residential amenity spaces, neighborhood open spaces and on-site below-grade parking. Project plans show the building would total 189,310 square feet in residential space, 10,567 square feet in amenity areas and 7,008 square feet in commercial retail use.

The building’s massing concept is set in a reverse “s-shape” design, plans show. It includes a large, open courtyard with the commercial area located at the intersection of NE Northgate Way and Roosevelt Way NE. According to the development team, this massing allows the back of house functions along shared easements to lay out more efficiently than other options that were originally presented to city officials. Under that design, the building entrance also faces the courtyard and activates that space. The current massing option was preferred by both the applicant and the city.

Two single-story commercial buildings with surface-grade parking currently occupy the site and are scheduled to be demolished before construction begins, according to project plans. Narrow sidewalks line each street and three curb cuts exist along NE Northgate Way. All sidewalks will be expanded to meet the city’s current standards and the three curb cuts will be removed and repaired. Existing street trees also line each street and will be either retained or replaced upon coordination with the Seattle Department of Transportation and the city’s urban forestry department.

Several community landmarks such as the Northgate Shopping Center, Kraken Community Iceplex, Northgate Public Library and Northgate Community Center can be found within one mile of the site. Per the development team in the proposal, the project’s goals align themselves with the surrounding neighborhoods’ goals to build up the community with affordable residences and pedestrian walkways as well as environmentally-friendly spaces.

“The Northgate area is a rapidly developing neighborhood and includes major recent developments such as the newly opened light rail station, the ongoing Northgate Mall redevelopment and many multifamily infill projects throughout,” project plans state. “Historically, NE Northgate Way and Roosevelt Way NE, along with many other streets like it have been auto-centric in nature and feature low-density commercial spaces with surface-grade parking and narrow sidewalks. The neighborhood’s mission is to revitalize these underdeveloped areas with higher-density buildings that make streets more pedestrian-friendly, add neighborhood open spaces that make the neighborhood more green and provide more housing to support affordability.”

GMD Development is based in Seattle and specializes in the development and preservation of affordable housing, according to the company’s LinkedIn page. Through utilizing a broad range of financial products, including bonds and tax credits, GMD Development has structured complex, multifamily transactions that often involve multiple sources of debt and equity. The firm has focused its development strategy in the Western United States including Alaska, California, Idaho, Montana and Oregon as well as Washington.

The firm has another project in the Puget Sound region currently under construction, according to its website. Watershed Renton is located in the heart of downtown Renton at 625 Williams Ave. S. That project is scheduled to be completed later this year and will offer 145 apartments in a mix of studios, one-, two- and three-bedroom units.