Capitol Hill Housing’s proposed Central District affordable housing development will go before the East Design Review Board on Wednesday, Nov. 30.
The Liberty Bank Building is named in honor of Seattle’s first black-owned bank, most of which was razed last October at the corner of 24th Avenue and East Union.
CHH has entered a memorandum of understanding this October with Africatown, The Black Community Impact Alliance and self-sufficiency nonprofit Centerstone, committing to a partnership that will preserve the black community’s history and empower its future through the Liberty Bank development.
CHH is aiming for a spring 2017 groundbreaking and completion of the project in summer 2018.
The six-story mixed-use building will have five residential stories — 115 affordable one-bedroom, two-bedroom and studio units — atop a one-story podium with ground-floor retail.
The MOU commits the Capitol Hill Housing Foundation to providing $5,000 annually for three years to help establish a business innovation fund that empowers black business owners. Liberty Bank is designed to include 3,400 square feet of retail space.
A street-level parking garage will accommodate 18 vehicles.
According to design review application documents, a legislative rezone application that would allow CHH to build above 40 feet on the parcel is being considered based on a recommendation from the 23rd Avenue Action Plan Urban Design Framework. To save time, CHH has made a request for a contract rezone .
Commercial space will run along East Union, wrapping around the corner at 24th and a courtyard will front 24th Avenue, under a preferred design option. CHH will work with its MOU partners to prioritize affordability for small black-owned businesses that meet minimum leasing criteria, according to the design proposal. Currently, the four commercial spaces are being considered for a restaurant or retail food business, a drop-in financial services business, a clothing shop and a barber shop.
As an identifier that honors the site’s past, an “LB” logo from the original Liberty Bank will be used incorporated into the exterior of the building.
CHH and architecture firm Mithun will present their latest design proposal to the East Design Review Board at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 30, in the Stuart T. Rolfe Room of Seattle University’s Admissions and Alumni Community Building, 824 12th Ave.