Design Review meeting for old library site

Next Monday, the Design Review Board will hear more about the proposed six-story apartment building called “Ballard West” that may replace the old library at 5711 24TH Ave NW.

According to the design proposal (.pdf) the apartment building will have 107 total residential units on six floors as well as nearly 11,000 square feet of retail space at ground level. The design calls for two floors of parking below grade with a total of 88 parking spots for vehicles. As a requirement, they will also provide 31 bicycle parking spaces. Plans also call for a “green roof” with a 1,300 square foot deck. The proposal states that the sustainability goals of the project are: LEED Platinum for Homes, Built Green and Energy Star.

The front of the building, along 24th Ave NW, will be terraced to meet the 4-percent slope in the road. From the proposal: “The proposed design establishes a strong commercial edge along 24th Avenue NW by maximizing transparency at the retail areas and incorporating a variety of building setbacks providing for recessed building entries, widened sidewalks and a plaza. The streetscape is animated by sidewalk benches, bike racks, and opportunities for tenants to expand café tables, planters or other uses to the sidewalk realm.”

The design team will be presenting this proposal to the Design Review Board on Monday, November 22nd at 6:30 p.m. at the Ballard High School library (1418 NW 65th St.) The public will be able to comment on the design and the review board will offer their recommendation to the director of the DPD.

31 comments on “Design Review meeting for old library site”

  1. 107 units. Assuming half single occupant and half double, that is 160 people. 88 parking spaces? Put Retail traffic on top of that, and parking just got a lot less manageable in the area surrounding this site. I am not a big fan of the planning and requirements for this type of housing in Ballard.

  2. looks good to me.

    much better than that ugly old library building–now that’s an eyesore.

    funny how entitled people think they deserve a view from a lot they bought down the street.

    also funny how people assume everyone needs a car. seems like all my neighbors have 3 or 4 cars. wtf?

  3. I think people have a right to bitch a little when a huge condo goes up and blocks their view. I don’t think it’s entitlement.

  4. That old library building makes me sad every time I see it — Abraxus was such a great store. Something’s got to happen in this space, and there’s no way a short building will go in there.

  5. You want a protected view? Buy a house in an area with covenants protecting your view.

  6. Amen to that. I’m bitter enough about town homes moving into my neighborhood and bringing four extra cars on the street per four units. Glad I don’t have to deal with 80 extra cars! Whoever decided that lowering the parking requirements (developerz in mai counzil?) was a good idea needs a head check or lives in West Seattle.

    Good luck fighting this abomination!

  7. Don’t worry, Mayor McGinn will issue every resident a flying unicorn and tricycle.

  8. isn’t it too late gurple?

    Abraxus was a neat store, but that old building is somewhat derelict. or do you think it’s worthy of preservation as an example of the same 60’s style of architecture that Denny’s was?
    what was that style called again? googly or something like that?

  9. I’m not sure how you got “we should preserve this building” from what I said. I’m firmly of the opinion that something should be done in that space, and soon.

  10. I like the old library building, always have. I think it’s far handsomer than the Denny’s building was.

  11. don’t delay! submit your application for sidewalk seating for your restaurant/bar/coffee shop today.

  12. The reduction in parking spaces required for new construction is NOT a McGinn invention. Make a little effort to get the facts straight. That pearl was given during the Nickels years or before. Nickels was very vocal about making it miserable for car owners and commuters. He believed that if you don’ give ample and easy parking, that people will give up their cars. Fail. They just park elsewhere and don’t visit businesses in those areas. 88 spots for 107 units is ridiculously few and will add many cars to the surrounding neighborhood. When 24th becomes pay parking that will push even more cars into the side streets. From what I have read on this blog, the commuter busses are packed and often sketchy.

  13. you should review the zoning around your next place before you move in if you are concerned about views. You have only yourself to blame.

  14. At least it’s not another low/no income housing project. At least it will hopefully bring more business into ballard.

    It’s better that doing nothing and just watching the old building fall into dis-repair and the hands of vandals.

  15. I’m still trying to figure out what exactly there is a view of from there….view of the QFC?

  16. Crazy! No matter what you think about transportation issues reality is most people own a car. It makes no sense at all not to allow for 1 car slot per unit. Even that is aspirational by today’s standards, as many units are likely to be lived in by couples who own two cars. I question whether this is all about being green when there are bicycle slots for only 1/4 of the units. Sounds more like a developer not wanting to put more space into parking — let the neighbors deal with all the extra cars on the street.

  17. That’s a great location for busing (15/17/18/44/46/75) so you could get to many areas without a car if you didn’t want to have one. You can walk to tons of necessities as well (food/doctors/banks). I think people who want to keep 2 cars will probably avoid this place as they’d have already made parking a deal-breaker in their condo search. However, there are those searching for condos who are specifically looking for a place where they can get by without a car and this would fit the bill.

  18. I have to work that evening, but if any of you are going to the meeting, someone please bring up the subject of them exterminating the building prior to demolition. The last thing anyone in this neighborhood wants is rats running everywhere. It happened with the Danielle project and it will happen again with the demolition of the old Library.

  19. It was Nickels in cahoots with the developers (shock!). It’s expensive to build parking with little or no financial return. So, like many of our zoning codes, it was sold under the guise of trying to be “more green,” when in reality it just made more green for the developer.

  20. Developers tend to like parking because users tend to demand it when buying/leasing. In many parts of Seattle the City has enforced a max as well a a minimum of parking.

    That said, this is going to make those streets much less manageable

  21. its more I have been in that apartment for over a year and the view was good. I was going to start looking to buy eventually anyway. I can’t say I know many who would go out and look at zoning before moving into an apartment.

  22. What bothers me isn’t the lack of parking but the lack of road space. The city keeps approving these high density housing plans which in turn means more people which in turn means more cars. Problem is we have the same roads we had 50 years ago. Simple mathematics say you can only squeeze so many cars into a given space. Wouldn’t be such a bad issue if we had half decent public transit but we don’t. High density housing is a great idea IF you have the infrastructure to support it. NYC, Paris, SF, etc. are all areas where it makes sense. Seattle is not, at least not until this city gets serious about public transit.

  23. Is there really that kind of demand for new apartments? I mean, it seems like most all of the condos that have gone up in the last four years are all sitting empty. Perhaps I’m misjudging?

  24. Another one? Say it isn’t so. In the unlikely event that all these luxury apartments/condos are all occupied Ballard certainly does not have the parking or streets for such density.

  25. These are apartments, not condos, so I don’t think there will be too much of an issue filling the units. With 1-, 2-, and 3-BR units, there will easily be well over 100 cars to accomodate, which means 20-30 cars will be on the street. As residents down there can attest, parking is already impossible down there. Good luck.

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