The Modera Belmont, an apartment complex by SERA Architects and Mill Creek Residential Trust, is continuing its way through the Design Review process. The full block development would contain 202 dwelling units above ground floor retail and live/work units. 105 car parking spaces would be located in a below grade garage, with bike storage located in a common room accessed directly from the SE 7th Ave.
The project is proposed for the full block bound by SE 6th / Morrison / 7th and Belmont, currently home to the Oregon Ballet Theatre. In October the Portland Business Journal reported that the OBT planned to sell the site to Mill Creek Residential Trust to help relieve long term debt. The existing building was built in 1940 as the East Portland branch of the First National Bank of Oregon, to a design by Barrett and Logan. In the 1984 Historic Resource Inventory, the property was evaluated as “eligible/contributing”.
At the second Design Review hearing the architects made a number of changes from the proposal presented at the first hearing. Perforated metal panel balconies were added at the white panel recesses. The internal courtyard became wider, and the area of brick facing the courtyard was increased. Live/work units facing SE Belmont St were replaced with true retail units.
A Design Review hearing was held on June 4th 2015. Prior to hearing a Staff Report And Recommendation To The Design Commission [PDF] was published which did not yet recommend approval. Concerns remained about a residential unit facing SE 6th Ave, the use of metal panel adjacent to the garage entry, and whether the number of balconies added was sufficient. The Design Commission was however extremely pleased by the applicant’s willingness to respond to their concerns expressed at the previous hearings. A third Design Review hearing is currently scheduled for July 9th.