A long-vacant corner parcel in the Capitol Hill neighborhood will soon find a new use. On Thursday, the Historic Landmark Commission approved a special exception and new construction request for the 2nd and 2nd Apartments, a mixed-used project proposed for the northeast corner of the intersection of 200 North and 200 West.
The project is in the Capitol Hill Historic District and includes two, three-story buildings with four units each. The building that fronts 200 North will include a two-story corner unit at the intersection that will be reserved for commercial space while the remaining units will be residential. Each unit will have a two-car garage. The developers will not include off-street parking for the commercial space but will rely on adjacent on-street parking on both 200 North and 200 West.
According to Kevin Horn, the project’s architect, the commercial space is a story lower to create a height transition to the taller residential space and visually distinguish the front building’s separate uses.
The building heights will also vary slightly to break up the building’s scale and make each residential unit appear like a separate building.
The garages will be accessed via a small private driveway. The entrances to the front building’s residential units will be at street level on 200 North.
The east and west corner units in the rear building will have entrances via a private walkway. The entrance to the westernmost unit will front 200 West. A private walkway will connect the eastern corner unit to 200 North. The entrances to the two middle units will be through the car garage.
The HLC’s approval of a special exception request will allow the developers to build closer to the sidewalk. The front building will have a setback of 12 feet instead of the required 15-foot setback in the CN (Neighborhood Commerical District) zone. The developers argued that the reduced setback allows for better street engagement for the commercial portion.
The HLC also approved a four-foot height increase. Both buildings will top out at 29 feet instead of the 25-foot height requirement set under zoning.
The project is similar to a proposal that the HLC approved in 2013 for the same site. The developers did not apply for a building permit in time and the HLC’s original approval expired, requiring new approvals. The site currently houses a vacant garage that they city considers a noncontributing structure and is not historically protected.
The site currently houses a vacant garage that the city considers a noncontributing structure and is not historically protected.
The original proposal was for an entirely residential project, but since the first approval, the city has adjusted the land use requirements for the CN District, requiring that all new projects be mixed-use.
The buildings’ external materials will be a mix of brick and dark gray aluminum siding. The commercial space will have significant glazing with large floor-to-ceiling windows along both the north and west corners. The residential units in the building fronting 200 North will each have an accessible second-floor, Juliet balcony.
Each residential unit will have a ground-floor room and two-car garage, second-floor living space with a kitchen and two bedrooms on the third floor.