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Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Call To Order:

Vice-Chair Norman Sandler called the regularly scheduled Design Commission meeting to order at 7:34 PM in the Council Chambers, 9611 SE 36th Street, Mercer Island, Washington. 

 

Roll Call:

Vice-chair Sandler, Commissioners Bryan Caditz, Marcia Dawson, Callie Ridolfi, and George Wittman were present.  Chairman Fred Glick and Commissioner Lucia Pirzio-Biroli were absent. 

 

Staff Present:

Richard Hart, Development Services Director and Shelley Bolser, Associate Planner.

 

Minutes:

Commissioner Wittman noted that he did not make the motion to approve Item 1 on the minutes of March 23, 2005.  Staff noted the change and will review the tapes to determine who made the motion.  Commissioner Dawson moved and Commissioner Caditz seconded, to approve the March 23, 2005 minutes subject to correcting which commissioner moved to approve Item 1.  The amended minutes were approved by a vote of 5-0.

 

Regular Business:

 

Action Item 1:

The applicant, Paul Franks for South Mercer LLC, requested final design approval for a new two-story mixed-use retail and office building at 8451 SE 68th St.

 

The applicant had come before the Design Commission for a study session on January 26, 2005 and received preliminary design approval from the Design Commission on February 23, 2005. 

 

Shelley Bolser, Associate Planner, gave the staff presentation.  Mrs. Bolser noted that the applicant had done an excellent job of responding to Design Commission conditions from preliminary approval.  The applicant had clarified prior to the meeting that there was a graphics error on the elevations, and the apparent window mullions were actually wood window trim.  Staff accordingly revised the recommended condition to read, “All window trim on the building shall be faced with the same color and material.” 

 

Paul Franks of Paul Franks Architecture at 3805 116th Ave SE in Bellevue gave the applicant presentation.  Mr. Franks noted that the applicant agreed with the staff report and explained the graphics error.  

 

Commissioners had questions, which were answered as follows:

·         The current design review meeting is limited to discussion of how the applicant has met or not met the conditions of preliminary approval.  Window placement and siding were already reviewed and approved at preliminary approval.

·         The sign shown on the stairwell was not on the original plans, and will be applied for separately and reviewed administratively. 

 

No public comment was offered.

 

Commissioners discussed the following items:

·         The signage shown on the elevation should be approved administratively, and would work better with the façade if mounted on the stone veneer base of the stairwell.

 

Motion:

Commissioner Ridolfi moved, and Commissioner Caditz seconded the motion, to grant final design approval for the proposed development for South Mercer Village Shopping Center located at 8451 SE 68th St in the Planned Business Zone, as presented on the submittal packet date stamped March 23, 2005.  This decision incorporates the findings of the Staff Report and is in accordance with MICC Section 19.04.010, MICC 19.12, and MICC 19.15.040, and is subject to the following condition:

1.       All window trim on the building shall be faced with the same color and material.

 

The motion passed by a vote of 5-0.

 

 

Action Item 2:

The applicant, Bill Stalzer for SECO Development, seeks Design Commission preliminary approval to build two new 5-story mixed-use residential and retail buildings, public plazas, a courtyard, right of way improvements, and underground parking.  Project includes 189 residential units, 7,264 square feet of retail, 5,687 square feet of restaurant space, 4,957 square feet of office space, and 316 at grade and sub-grade parking spaces. 

 

Shelley Bolser, Associate Planner, gave the staff presentation.  Mrs. Bolser began by listing several clarifications recently received from the applicant.  Mrs. Bolser noted that the applicant had come before the Design Commission for a study session on February 9, 2005, and then described the staff report including staff recommendations.  Staff recommended that the applicant revise 77th Ave façade and northwest and southwest corners with additional modulation, emphasize the pedestrian entrances, maintain pedestrian-scaled light fixtures, and provide additional materials for final design review.    

 

Bill Stalzer of Stalzer and Associates at 603 Stewart St in Seattle began the applicant presentation.  Mr. Stalzer reiterated some of the points of clarification and provided the Design Commission with a letter to clarify the project.  He stated that the design team was in agreement with conditions 3,4, and 5 of the staff report, but would discuss why they felt conditions 1 and 2 had been satisfied. 

 

Jim Bodoia of Mithun Architects at 1201 Alaskan Way in Seattle continued the applicant presentation.  Mr. Bodoia described the site, including the reasons for placement of retail and live-work units.  He described the modulation used on the 77th Ave SE façade, as well as reasons for the corner designs.

 

Commissioners had questions, which were answered as follows:

·         Larry Smart of 120 Belmont Ave E in Seattle, landscape architect for the project, noted that the bus stop would be moved approximately 35 feet to the north to be closer to the residential uses; the bus stop would be near benches and bicycle racks

·         The applicant submitted a colors and materials board

·         The proposed siding materials are stucco and hardi-panel

 

There was one public testimony from Martin Smith of 4121 Boulevard Place in Mercer Island.  Mr. Smith felt that the proposed project was high quality and would enhance the quality of life, and supported the current direction of development in the Town Center. 

 

Vice-Chair Sandler closed the public testimony period.

 

Commissioners discussed the following items:

·         The Design Commission had positive comments for the project in general

·         Commissioners would like to have a separate presentation or report from the Transportation Planner and City Engineer on the effect of increased traffic trips in the Town Center; Director Hart stated that staff would work to provide this information at a regularly scheduled meeting in the future.

·         Commissioners had concerns regarding adequate modulation on 77th and at the building corners

·         There were concerns that the pedestrian entrance on 77th Ave SE would be neither obvious nor provide adequate modulation.

·         The southwest corner would be opposite the round canopy on The Mercer, a project currently under construction.  The proposed corner would be out of context and scale with adjacent development.

·         The concrete wall on Sunset would be approximately 8 feet tall and needs to be stepped back or otherwise modulated.  The concrete wall in the south plaza should be similarly addressed.

·         The second story expression on the façade needs to continue to the 77th Ave SE façade.

·         The vehicular entry for this project would be located north of The Mercer vehicular entrance across 77th Ave SE

 

Motion:

Commissioner Caditz moved, and Commissioner Dawson seconded, to grant preliminary design approval for the proposed development located at at 2650 77th Ave SE, as presented on the submittal packet date stamped March 22, 2005 and April 5, 2005.  This decision incorporates the findings of the Staff Report and is in accordance with MICC Section 19.11, with the following conditions:

1.       Revise the 77th Avenue residential entry to reflect adequate horizontal and vertical modulation using varied rooflines, projecting building elements, setbacks, and/or a change in color and material per MICC 19.11.010(B)(1)(e), 19.11.010(B)(2), 19.11.060(B)(4), 19.11.060(B)(6), and 19.11.060(B)(10).

  1. Revise the southwest corner to reflect adequate modulation and consistency with the rest of the proposal using varied rooflines, architectural treatments, fenestration, and/or a change in color and material per MICC 19.11.010(B)(1)(e), 19.11.010(B)(2), 19.11.060(B)(4), 19.11.060(B)(10) 19.11.060(B)(12), and 19.11.060(B)(14).
  2. Emphasize the pedestrian entrances on Sunset Highway and 77th Ave SE using paving, lighting, and landscaping to meet the requirements of MICC 19.11.060(B)(8) and 19.11.100(B)(5).
  3. Continue the use of pedestrian scaled light fixtures on Sunset Highway per MICC 19.11.090(B)(1).
  4. Provide additional information regarding the following items:
    1. Window and door embellishments
    2. Demonstrate how the design is integrated with the transit stop on 77th Ave SE.
    3. Rooftop appurtenance height and area
    4. Landscape plan indicating specific species, size, placement of plants, and irrigation
  5. Revise the concrete wall on Sunset Highway and the concrete wall in the south plaza per MICC 19.11.060(B)(2) and 19.11.060(B)(3). 
  6. A detailed model shall be submitted at the time of final design review. 

The motion passed by a vote of 5-0 at 9:37pm. 

 

 

Other Business

 

Director’s Report:

Director Hart noted that the 7700 Central project is tentatively scheduled for May 25, 2005 and there are currently no other items on the agenda.  Staff will work to have a Town Center transportation discussion with the Design Commission on that date.

 

Next Regular Meeting:

The next Design Commission meeting is scheduled for April 27th at 7:30 PM.  Final design review for Aljoya House at 2430 76th Ave SE in the town center and a study session for the Mercer Island Country Club second story addition are on the agenda. 

 

Commissioner Absences:

There are no scheduled absences at this time. 

           

Adjournment:   9:40 PM

 

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