Expanded MLT228 project adds residential component

Expanded MLT228 project adds residential component

The project planned for the former Handy Mart site at 228th St SW and 44th Ave W has been expanded to include the surrounding Terrace East Apartments complex. The larger project now includes an additional commercial building and two residential buildings. The Handy Mart parcel is zoned Commercial Business (BC) while the Terrace East Apartments parcel is zoned Low Density Multi-Household (RML).

Here is a description of the project from Arca, the architect and developer:

MLT228 reinforces the neighborhood center at the intersection of 44th Avenue and 228th Street in Mountlake Terrace. The project is incorporated into the 44th Avenue streetscape and contributes to the urban design of this prominent city street. Approximately 30,000 square feet of commercial space lines the street with surface and garage parking provided on site. Exposed glulam beams and cross-laminated timber define the prominent roof structure. Pedestrian connections are provided through the commercial buildings between the proposed residential building and 44th Avenue.

The residential project fronts 228th Street with a double-height lobby, apartments, and parking garage access. 124 residential units surround the central Galleria for social gatherings, spending time outdoors, and for children to play. The Galleria is the heart of the project and creates a unique environment with thoughtful use of plantings and hardscape to create smaller scale gathering spaces and landscaping along apartment entries. All parking is located below-grade to provide secure parking for residents and guests. The residential development provides additional housing options with vitality and character to the neighborhood with access to commercial amenities and transit along the 44th Ave. corridor.

Arca will be applying for a planned unit development or PUD for short. Planned unit development (PUD) ordinances allow developers flexibility to depart from a strict interpretation of zoning requirements in exchange for fulfilling an established set of planning criteria.  Because the public process associated with PUD is more robust and there is more flexibility both for the developer and City staff, the project can usually end up with a much better design and function for that specific site. In fact, the first criteria for a PUD in the City's code is "The proposed development would be of superior design and construction than what would normally occur under the regular zoning regulations."

A couple of the ways the proposal deviates from a strict interpretation of the code is an additional story on the residential buildings, reduced internal and street setbacks and increased commercial space on the parcel zoned RML. Clark says that they hope to break ground on the project in 2019. Prior to that there will be plenty of opportunity for public input during the PUD process.

The project is ideally situated adjacent to a Community Transit bus stop. Route 112 south to the MLT Transit Center or north to the Lynnwood Transit Center currently serves the bus stop at weekday half hour intervals from about 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. with additional stops until 9:30pm. Weekend frequency is about every hour. As Community Transit reallocates resources with the opening of light rail this route may see increased frequency in the future. With a grocery store, hardware store, pet store, several restaurants and professional services across the street this this development may end up being a great location for those seeking a car-lite or car-free lifestyle to live or work.

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