Developers release design for mixed-use structure at current Bartell’s site

Seattle developer Henbart LLC announced plans for the mixed-use development set to be constructed at the current Bartell’s site (NW 56th St and 22nd Ave NW).

The My Ballard team initially covered the announcement of the development when the design review meeting was held in December last year.

Screenshot (25)

Henbart LLC announced that the project (design pictured above) will be a six and five story, mixed-use site with two contemporary, companion buildings featuring 80 apartments and 4 townhomes. The property will front Ballard Commons Park and approximately 21,000 sf. of loft style office space and 21,000 sf. of retail along 22nd Avenue.

The northern building that will be constructed across from Ballard Commons Park will be primarily residential, with two floors of office space. The project will also include underground parking with stalls dedicated for office, retail and residents along with electric charging stations.

“This is an ideal site to promote an emerging theme on the traditional mixed-use building by purposefully combining uses and spaces,” said Mark Craig, President of Henbart LLC. “Rather than maximizing the site with a traditional box design we created two buildings that respond to their adjacencies with an artistic and highly amenitized approach.”

The project is designed by the Seattle architectural firm, Studio Meng Strazzara, and aims to showcase the creation of connectivity between residential, office and retail.

“Henbart wanted a design that differentiates itself from the typical market with two buildings rather than a mega building. We are working with a client who has a long-term vision for the site and is willing to invest in great spaces,” says Charles Strazzara,” Principal at Studio Meng Strazzara.

According to a press release written by Henbart, the two building option was decided on to achieve the collaborative mix between retail, office, and residential components while connecting them through a central lobby.

The property is set to showcase unique features including card key activated bike lockers on each residential floor and a roof-top garden.

The interiors are set to offer loft style retail, office and modern mid-rise living. According to the press release, the apartments and townhomes are designed to attract both young people as well as established professionals looking for an urban lifestyle within a walkable neighborhood. There will also be a mix of studios, one-bedroom and two-bedroom units throughout the residential section of the buildings.

In terms of office spaces, they will range from 1,200 sf. to 1,800 sf. for smaller firms or start-ups that are keen to be located in Ballard. “There are very few boutique, class A office options in Ballard. We think our loft-style design and mix of uses will be in demand,” stated Craig.

The project is still in the early stages of its design, however, architects are keen to have each building feature multiple levels of landscaped view terraces and community common areas along with amenity spaces.

“We are still refining the common areas but they will be designed to be used throughout the day and evening by office workers and residents. Building connections is a central theme throughout the design,” concluded Craig.

49 thoughts to “Developers release design for mixed-use structure at current Bartell’s site”

  1. This is ridiculous! Ballard is being torn apart by developers with $. Enough is enough! Is there not enough traffic? Is there not enough NEW condos and apartments that are still in the process of being built? Do they know they are tearing down an iconic block of ballard? I hate this! I hope they choke on their money.

  2. Wait, are you saying the Bartell Drug’s building here is historic? I believe its a fairly modern building.

    The Bartell’s already has a new location, they might keep this location too and we would get some new residents directly across the library in the bargain. It even has more parking than the number of living units being generated.

    What is not to like about this unless you just hate growth in general?

  3. I agree Holly , this has nothing to do with growth, Ballard has become over built way too fast . Its all about more property tax for the city .Try to get a building permit for a small project on your home . It will take a year . These big developers get permits thrown at them

  4. Let’s get three or four people living in the AVA apartments on the site of the old Sunset Bowl before we build MORE apartments.

  5. “…before WE build more apartments.”

    “WE”? Do you own the property? Why would it be your decision or any of the naysayers above what gets built on these parcels of land.

    I’ve gotten a building permit for a major house remodel that took 3 months. This has nothing to do with ‘favoritism’ on the part of our city government.

    If you guys don’t like growth, there’s some lovely riverfront land up in Snohomish county for sale.

  6. MH, I just went throughout the permitting process for a small project on my SFH in Ballard and it took four weeks. Not sure where you pulled that “take a year” figure out of – maybe thin air? Those property taxes pay for many services I’m sure you would not want to be without.

    As for Holly’s comment, Charles B is right – that “iconic block” is a recent cinderblock box with surface parking. Hardly historic.

    Sadly, it’s your kind of NIMBY attitude that could turn us into another San Francisco – a playground for the rich bent on never changing.

    Housing availability is at a very low mark. To quote Seattle Transit Blog this very morning, ” In 2007, there were over 12,000 single-family homes on the market in King County. Today there are just 3,000, despite the increase in population.” This low supply and growing demand is what drive up rents and drives a wide swath of people out of the city.

    Yes, we need better transit to connect Ballard to downtown and the U-District, but the solution isn’t to stop building apartments and condos that maintain availability. This is short sightedness to an extreme. If you don’t like our city being a city then maybe you should consider Bellevue?

  7. If I hear one more person complain about growth, I think I am going to puke! You live in a major city people! Don’t be a NIMBY. I for one welcome this and others similar. It is the reason that Ballard will be and continue to be a great neighborhood. There is a massive shortage of housing! I do hope that Bartells will keep the second location as well however. It would really help the W. Ballardites.

  8. Real sensitive comment Dee Veloper ! Ballard homeowner you been drinking way too much of the Kool-Aid Seattle transit blog is very bias . If there was such a shortage , why are all these ugly boxes EMPTY !

  9. People complain when development occurs in or near single family neighborhoods. This is in the heart of Ballard’s urban core. Seattle needs to grow, and the best place for that growth is dense, walkable urban villages. One of the downsides of development is displacement, either of people or beloved, community-enhancing businesses (like Sunset Bowl). None of that his happening here-Bartells is happy with their new location. This is unqualified great news, and should be welcomed. Housing demand is rising–if supply is not allowed to rise with demand, we’ll see more sprawl and out of control rents across the board.

  10. I really like the office space idea. It would be great if it was just a little retail and more office space. We need jobs in Ballard so that our retail establishments have daytime traffic to survive. This would help the balance of shops that sell things as opposed to just nail salons and bar/restaurants.

  11. Once thy price out the middle class with nothing but high end condos, Ballard will be nothing but rich techies and bums. Enjoy.

  12. I’m really worried about the intersection of 56th and 22nd. That intersection is already pretty slammed during the evening commute. I think it might need a light if there’s a lot more traffic going through there. Regardless, the northbound traffic is going to start to back up into the intersection at Market.

    Something will need to be done to try to shunt as many people as possible off of 22nd and onto the arterials.

  13. @Charles B and @DeeVeloper It’s one thing to make a point, its another to be tasteless and rude when you do it. I can express frustration and anger if I please and that doesn’t give you a platform to be Aholes. And Dee Veloper your comment was just sick. As a resident who has lived here over 20 years, and can remember the view before all the condos were up and the King and Queen of Norway visiting and trips to the old Ballard Library, my opinion is absolutely valid and isn’t diminished by your lack to communicate like a decent person.

    To everyone else, I can appreciate other perspectives, however culturally I feel Ballard is losing its roots condo by condo. And that’s OKAY to feel that way.

  14. God, can someone please design an interesting building for one of these mega-developments? This looks totally boring and uninspired. Please put some creative thought into this. The neighborhood deserves it!

  15. @Holly How am I being rude here? I was just pointing out that the Bartell’s building is not historic.

    It seems interesting to me that the people you singled out as “Aholes” are the ones who happen to disagree with you. Neight one of us appears to be engaging in personal attacks or name calling here.

    I would seriously like to know what people find wrong with this development.

    As far as I can tell its adding housing (with sufficient parking) to a space that now only houses a drug store. The drug store might even stay when the construction is done.

    What’s not to like?

  16. Boardbrown, you can always (and should) attend design review meetings for these buildings. Community input pushing for creative architecture make a big difference.

    MH, in the real world we have facts and figures. Just saying a news source is biased because you don’t like what they say is called trolling. We can, and should have a real conversation about development in the city, but your perspective just seems to be, “I’m angry at everyone and don’t like change!” At least be respectful and just put something out there as your opinion. That’s a lose-lose for everyone in our city and is a perfect example of the kind of polarization that has let our cities and civic institutions crumble.

  17. How dare they raze the historic structure where one of my minions once fetched me some velvet for my robe whilst I was visiting your fair hamlet!

    I believe the shop-maiden’s name was JoAnn or such.

  18. So far, this one doesn’t sound half bad. I like the idea of office space and I like that there will be plenty of parking. I think the density makes sense for the location.

    That being said, it’s hard for me to get past the gut reaction of “sigh, another huge development”. If they can fill the office space, I think it would be a benefit to that area. We need some variety instead of more bars.

  19. @ skipspence: I believe AVA is full or really close to full already. They rent for more money than I imagined was possible for Ballard, but don’t assume something that you don’t know.

  20. @plasticbags I like the office space part too. I think encouraging more small to medium sized business to take root is very much a good thing.

    As an additional selling point to perspective small businesses, there are now plenty of places to get a nice lunch near Market Street. :)

  21. As much as I am happy to see that this is at least not quite the mega box building -as most around here, it leaves many questions open:
    -how much light will it take from the street and the fountain park for the kids
    -where can people with children/and or low income live anymore
    -WHERE on earth is the INFRASTRUCTURE to get these people in and out of Ballard ??

  22. @Charles B Just because someone disagrees with me doesn’t mean I consider them an Ahole, not at all, I appreciate seeing other perspectives because I just might change mine if I find someone has a valid argument. Ahole more pertained to Dee Veloper and his ” there’s some lovely riverfront land up in Snohomish county for sale.” comment.

    The sarcasm here is ridiculous (King of Norway), it is absolutely fine for people who have grown up and lived here for 20 years + to express their issue with the condo surge. I’ve got a love for that Bartells and I love Ballard, hence my passion for the Ballard I grew up in slipping away to condos.

  23. I like that it’s two buildings, and I like the office space. We need growth to keep housing affordable here, and this is the place to do it (rather than razing older homes).

  24. What bothers me about these projects is that they were conceived to be part of an urban village with a quick, convenient, inexpensive transportation hub to other areas. What we got instead was all of the development with very very little of the transportation conveniences (dare I say monorail, etc. etc?).

  25. ” I’ve got a love for that Bartells and I love Ballard, hence my passion for the Ballard I grew up in slipping away to condos.”

    I agree. We need more one-story dumps with huge parking lots in the heart of Ballard.

    Amen sister!

  26. Does anybody really consider the Seattle Transit Blog a “news source”? I don’t think even the blog’s authors would claim that. Calling them biased is maybe a bit harsh. But they clearly have a very specific agenda and are definitely not impartial in their presentation of information.

    There are a lot of polarizing arguments surrounding “density” these days and some very strange bedfellows (environmentalists and property developers), but if we really do need more housing units, then redeveloping the Bartells site makes sense to me. And the state and city clearly think we do, as they are currently planning how to add 70,000 new housing units between now and 2035, several thousand of which will probably be allocated to central Ballard, meaning more upzoning, demolition, and change.

  27. THis is a great thread. Snarky comments aside it’s Ballard conversation about new development. I’m always amazed when people think the city is pulling the levers on al the new development – they permit it. They also don’t permit it in the single family neighborhoods that dominate seattle’s landscape. Since we don’t have population control – thank heavens, it’s a decent trade-off. A vibrant downtown ballard surrounded by quiet family neighborhoods. While I miss some of the shops on Ballard Ave, I don’t want to go back to 20 years ago when there were just drunks hanging out in the morning. Family housing in some of these development = good idea, but expensive. Big playground at Ballard Commons = good ideal, let’s work on it.

  28. I think a lot of folks are not in the NIMBY court, but there is with these new large condos and boxy ‘McDwell” town homes a total disregard fro the architectural vernacular of historic Ballard. The new town house are too large, too tall and there is never ‘a nod’ to what is next door and down the street. Everything is pulled up cookie cutter cheap and flimsy, yet only wealthy folks can afford to move in. All the funky, artsy or just lower income folks are getting crowded out. It feels to me that developers money rules and our representatives are not looking out for their citizens and a community. It feels like we are at a bad tipping point.
    My other pet peeve are the feeble attempts to catch more rain water with rain gardens, mostly done by old home owners and then in the lot next door a huge mega box house a la Bellevue is cementing away any run off on their lot….
    Please come all to the Neighborhood Summit on Saturday April 5th from 9-1pm at the Seattle Center. Let your voice me heard off this forum!

  29. Will this 6 story “two buildings” block the sun for the the little park across the street? Ballard is turning into a neighborhood of tall building canyons.

  30. For those wondering whether this building will shade the Ballard Commons Park across the street, I did some quick calcs and it does not look that bad.
    Our latitude has a maximum solar altitude of 65 degrees on June 21, 42 degrees on March/Sept 21, and 19 degrees on Dec 21 respectively.

    If we assume the 6 story building is about 65 feet tall, and that there will be a 10′ sidewalk and 50′ wide street, we see that the longest shadow is 188′, about 2/3 of the park. Remember that is on the first day of winter when the park is not well-used.

    On the first day of spring/fall, the shadow is only 72′, which would barely cover the sidewalk along the south edge of the park.

    On the first day of summer, the building shadow is only 30′, which does not even cover half of the adjacent road.

    With the toddler water features on the South side of the park, we certainly want to maintain sunlight, but I don’t think it will be a problem when the season is right for such frolicking.

  31. Seattle born and raised been in Ballard for 10 years. I like the growth. I do have a problem with some of the buildings not fitting the character of the area. The townhomes that are cheap and packed in or even the really nice buildings (Ballard Inn what is up with the Italian Stone? Sticks out like a sore thumb surrounded by red brick buildings).

    This project seems like a complete win. Bartels was convenient with the parking, but it’s not a great building and I like the idea of attracting more office space. I work from home but would love if my employer moved to Ballard!

  32. I’m very upset about no longer being in walking distance of a Bartell’s. The new one is just a bit too far to walk without a beer break. Also, I’m in the ‘oh, no, not again’ camp. I have no issue with progress, but there is already too much construction going on in Ballard. Give us a bit of time before a new round.

  33. @ Holly:
    “an iconic block of ballard” Really?? Are you joking with this?? What on that block is even remotely close to being “iconic”? Neighborhoods change – that’s true of every city on the planet. If you can’t handle that then clearly you should be living in the suburbs.

    My only real issue with all the development going on is the lack of transportation infrastructure. The emphasis on parking spots is pretty stupid. The problem isn’t where do we put all those cars when they’re not moving but rather where do all those cars go when they ARE moving? Last I checked there’s no feasible way to add more roads/lanes to accommodate more cars. Unless you enjoy sitting in gridlock traffic you better hope they increase mass transit to deal with the influx of new residents. Remember: a packed bus takes up a lot less space on the road than the 50+ cars that would otherwise be there. Sadly, voters around here seem to be horribly short sighted so I predict things will get far worse before they get better.

  34. I can get behind this one because we desperately need more office space here in Ballard if this whole Urban Village concept is going to actually work. We need a way for people to live AND work IN Ballard to help ease some of the traffic in and out.
    As far as the overall development-craze here in Ballard, my main concern is actually the fact that due to the cut, the only way to enter Ballard from downtown (where most people seem to work these days) is via a bridge. None of these bridges can just be widened to accommodate more traffic. The more development, the more traffic and it is already completely insane during rush hour and on weekends. The city needs to address this AND the issue of parking. A lot of these new buildings do not have enough parking for their residents, let alone anyone visiting. Before we know it, somebody is going to have to build some monstrosity of a parking garage here in the center of town and that seems like a development/planning-fail to me.

  35. What is “soccer ect” anyway?
    Football while on rave drugs?

    They will never build a parking garage around here. That is a silly notion.

    Cars will be obsolete in 10 years.

  36. That is one ugly building. Ballard is starting to look like Lynnwood.

    S.E. Portland seems to be doing it right. Most of the new construction there fits in with existing buildings quite nicely, even the modern buildings.

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