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I agree, Our city needs more shopping destinations. Having it nearby pacific place would only help the area. We need more space available for larger retailers.
 

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I am an East facing home buyer at Escala and attended the design review meeting for this project last night. Apparently this block is zoned DOC-2 (mostly office use) and has no tower spacing requirements, although the block immediately to the North is zoned DMC and would require 80 feet of spacing. This means that the twin towers will be built an alley width, or about 20 feet, from the Eastern face of Escala. This is the same situation that residents of Cosmopolitan are facing.

I was surprised by the Design Review Board's lack of concern with the eradication of light, air space, privacy and view for both the Escala building and the proposed tower. John Midby, the Escala developer, and an attorney were also present to make clear the severe impact this building will have on Escala. The board said that it's not really their position to preserve individual views, and rightly so. But it seems to me when we're talking about 60-80 residential units that some consideration should be given to it.

Also, the architect, Ismael Leyva, was present to offer revised designs of the base of the tower as suggested by the Board. The height of the base has been cut from around 170' down to 140'. This will eliminate the multi-level retail environment that was originally proposed, which is too bad, since the initial design looked very vibrant. But a 140' tall base still seems enormous. Basically that will put a wall in front of EVERY unit left to right at Escala, up to about the 12th floor. Part of the wall will, however, be a "living wall" with plants and an irrigation system.

At the end of the meeting I spoke with a member of Multi-Capital, the financier of the Heron/Pagoda Towers and I asked what made them confident that a nearly billion dollar project would succeed in this real estate climate. He didn't have an answer, but according to the recent PI article they feel the recession will have blown over by the time the buildings are complete. He also said that they didn't really want to build both towers, but the city owned both properties (the parking lot and vacant retail spaces on 5th) and wanted to sell them as a package. So they purchased both and decided to build on both. I find it very strange that the developer has chosen to finance and construct a building that they didn't initially conceive. It will have no views for many West facing units which I imagine would make them a very tough sell (especially at $1000/SF).

I know mhays will say you should have done your research, and I guess he's right. At the time I purchased my unit I was aware of Heron Tower, which seemed like a great addition to the block. Pagoda Tower, however, came much later and disrupts 75% of the East face of Escala. I find it unconscionable to allow this kind of density because it's just not warranted in Seattle. (I don't intend this post to start flame war, just expressing my thoughts).
appreciate your thoughts, you seem very level headed about the situation
 

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Would it have? Do we really need another Pacific Place right next door to Pacific Place AND Westlake?
Yes. We need one or two of them. There is a long list of retailers/restaurants that are interested to open their businesses in downtown Seattle. Retail Core doesn't have enough room for more retailers and restaurants to come in. Downtown Bellevue is taking advantage of this opportunity to attract high end retailers/restaurants because they have more rooms for it while downtown Seattle has limited spaces for retailers and restaurants.
 

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I agree, Our city needs more shopping destinations. Having it nearby pacific place would only help the area. We need more space available for larger retailers.
I agree. That would be nice if we have rooms for Crate & Barrell, Saks Fifth Avenue, Best Buy, Target, and any retailers what any condo dwellers would need.
 

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As mentioned in one of the blog entries about this project, the architect was part of the team that designed the Time Warner Center in Manhattan at the Columbia Circle. The TWC is similar in concept in that its a twin tower project with a large atrium at the base connecting the towers. It includes office, condos, high end retail, a Whole Foods store, and a Mandarin Oriental hotel. If this project turns out anything like the TWC, I'll be ecstatic.

Here are some new renderings from Ben's blog.









 

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I agree with the need for more retail, but it ought to be more spread out. You know, bring some of that sweet mall loving to somewhere else that could use the pedestrian traffic. For instance, the Magnificent Mile in Chicago has a few multistory retail complexes, but they aren't literally next door to each other. It spreads out pedestrian traffic and street activity for a long ways.
 

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I agree with the need for more retail, but it ought to be more spread out. You know, bring some of that sweet mall loving to somewhere else that could use the pedestrian traffic. For instance, the Magnificent Mile in Chicago has a few multistory retail complexes, but they aren't literally next door to each other. It spreads out pedestrian traffic and street activity for a long ways.
I totally agree! It is seen like City of Seattle want to keep it together in Retail Core only area not spread it out of the zone. I can see one or two vertical shopping malls to be built on Westlake near Whole Food Co or next to Public Pike Market.
 

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This project and 5th and Columbia are the Sweetest. I think having retail spread out is great but at least this will be a block or two from Pike and Pine. It does enlarge the Retail Core. And the best part is that it will hide the Damn Pickle Barrels next door. :lol:
 

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I like that this project and 5th and Columbia will get great press and will in turn give seattle architecture a swift kick in the rear to step up design quality. Not that it hasnt been improving, but it will make it almost embarrassing to put up a plain box and expect excitement over it.
 

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Developers don't need excitement as much as permission, and designs that maximize income vs cost. Economics and Seattle's zoning and entitlement processes drive what you see built.
 

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I totally agree! It is seen like City of Seattle want to keep it together in Retail Core only area not spread it out of the zone. I can see one or two vertical shopping malls to be built on Westlake near Whole Food Co or next to Public Pike Market.
I've resisted doing this for many months now, but . . .

With all due respect, I simply cannot understand your message, because of your grammar. It makes no sense. What are you trying to say?

It's "Pike Place Market" or "Pike Place Public Market".
 

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I've resisted doing this for many months now, but . . .

With all due respect, I simply cannot understand your message, because of your grammar. It makes no sense. What are you trying to say?

It's "Pike Place Market" or "Pike Place Public Market".
English is my second language. Please try to understand what I am trying to say not "HOW" I say it. I'm doing my best to have "perfect" English so anyone can understand my points.

I was trying to say that I can see a vertical shopping mall (multi stories shopping mall) to be built across from Pike Public Market. Second one can be built near Whole Food Co on Westlake.
 

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That last reply is much more legible. I think both ASL and typos come in to play here. If you give it a quick proof read before posting and catch those simple grammar errors, as you seem to have done here, it communicates the idea much better.
 

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That last reply is much more legible. I think both ASL and typos come in to play here. If you give it a quick proof read before posting and catch those simple grammar errors, as you seem to have done here, it communicates the idea much better.
Yes. ASL and English have same vocabulary and both have different grammar structure. Sometime I have hard time to separate English and ASL grammars when I write any posts.
 

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I've resisted doing this for many months now, but . . .

With all due respect, I simply cannot understand your message, because of your grammar. It makes no sense. What are you trying to say?

It's "Pike Place Market" or "Pike Place Public Market".
:lol: Haha. Word.
 
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