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A peek at AvalonBay, an Arts District development with 475 apartments

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And quite a bit of open space

“Art Mews,” an 11,000-square-foot landscaped alley that would have outdoor seating and an art installation.
Renderings courtesy of BNIM

We’re getting our first look at AvalonBay, a development that, if approved by the city, would bring 475 live-work apartments to nearly four acres at Alameda and 7th streets in the southern edge of the Arts District.

Developer Mark Janda wants to demolish a cold storage warehouse and surface parking lot to build AvalonBay, which would be one of the biggest residential developments in the neighborhood. But it doesn’t look like it’s going to be a blocky fortress, like we’ve seen with some of other giant residential buildings in other parts of the city (ahem, Geoffrey Palmer).

A site plan and renderings from architects BNIM show a handful of courtyards and landscaped areas, some of which would be open to the public. Two plazas would face Industrial Street and two intersecting “paseos” would connect Industrial with Mill Street (the pathways would be open to the public during business hours).

In total, there would 44,000 square feet of open space, according to Brian Lewis of Marathon Communications, a project rep. That’s about equal to the amount of proposed commercial space.

An initial environmental study says AvalonBay—designed to “serve as a creative base camp” for a “wide spectrum of creators and artists”—would hold production and gallery space for residents.

Five percent of the units would be earmarked for tenants with very low incomes.

Construction would begin in 2018 and be completed in 2022.

Industrial Street looking west toward Alameda.
The Lookout would be a public courtyard along Industrial near the front entrance. The Hub is the name for the pool area. The Well would be a courtyard for residents.