The Modera Morrison has returned in front of the Design Commission for a second Design Advice Request meeting. The 7-story building is being designed by SERA Architects for Mill Creek Residential Trust. The project would include approximately 245 units. 177 vehicular parking spaces are proposed in two levels of below grade parking.
The building will be subject to the city’s inclusionary housing rules, which require the provision of affordable housing or the payment of a fee-in-lieu.
The project site is a full block at 1120 SE Morrison St, bound by SE Morrison, 12th, Belmont, and 11th. The site is currently occupied by a single story warehouse, parts of which date back to 1906.
One block to the south of the Modera Morrison site is the under-construction Modera Buckman. Other buildings recently completed, under construction or planned on the lower Belmont / Morrison corridor include the Goat Blocks and the Goat Blocks 888 building, Alder.9, Modera Belmont, Grand Belmont and the 12-story building adjacent to the Weatherly.
The building will be arranged in a U-shaped plan, with an east-facing courtyard that meets the ground at SE 12th Ave. Parking would be accessed from SE 11th Ave, one story below the first floor level. Ground floor retail would be located along the SE Belmont St, 12th Ave and Morrison St frontages. A double height residential lobby would be located at the corner of SE 11th Ave and Morrison St.
The primary material proposed for the Modera Morrison is stucco. Other materials proposed include standing seam metal panel, ribbed metal panel, vinyl windows, aluminum storefront glazing, steel canopies and steel balconies.
In response to feedback given at the first Design Advice Request (DAR) the building has evolved to a more contemporary design. At the second DAR, held on July 18th 2019, was reception to the changes was largely positive, as described in a summary memo:
• The majority of the Commission was in support of the revisions made since the previous DAR and the general direction of the design.
• The Commission expressed appreciation for the extent of retail around the building and the relocation of back-of-house uses to the interior of the building.
• While many Commissioners supported the floating corners on the west side of the building, they also suggested that an alternate design that dropped columns to the ground at these corners could be presented as an option in the LU package.
• The majority of the Commission was in support of the current 4’ penthouse recess, which also corresponds to other recesses on the building where balconies are located, but also noted that additional usable balconies are desirable provided they don’t make the façades too busy.
• The Commission supported the stacked windows on the western portions of the building and the increased ground floor expression on the east to help break down the scale of the building.
• The Commission noted concerns with the white stucco resulting in maintenance concerns.
The Modera Morrison has now been submitted for a Type III Design Review, which will include a public hearing in front of the Design Commission.