The redevelopment of Block 137, often referred to as the Wizer block, has been a high priority project for the LORA Board for a number of years. The project is included in the East End Redevelopment Plan as Project J, and as such, it is eligible for financial assistance using urban renewal funds. In early 2013, property owner Gene Wizer and his developer, W&K Development now known as Evergreen Group LLC, approached LORA for financial support for a new mixed-use development on the site. At the Board’s May meeting, Evergreen Group Principal Pat Kessi, presented a concept plan for redeveloping Block 137 that included new residential and retail development consistent with Project J in the East End Plan. Based on the proposal, the Board directed staff to negotiate a draft development agreement for the Board’s consideration.
On June 2, 2014, the Evergreen Group submitted a revised preliminary application for the Block 137 development to address many of concerns raised during the previous Development Review Commission hearing. The revised project will be three separate four-story buildings that will have 207 higher-end residential units and 36,500 square feet of quality retail. The project as planned will not exceed the 60-foot height limitation in downtown.
The revised plan shows 397 parking spaces on two levels of below grade parking and 26 adjacent on-street parking spaces. Of these, 268 spaces are shown for residential use and 155 parking spaces are for the retail component. The City will lease 135 of the retail spaces to ensure that the project will have public parking. The City will enter into a parking management agreement with the owner of the retail component of the project to ensure the public parking is operated and managed for the benefit of the community and the retail tenants. The revised project still includes an east-west public walkway between First and Second streets, and a north-south walkway connecting Evergreen to the east-west walkway.
The revised application is comprised of two documents: the revised design narrative and the project drawings. These two documents are posted below under Key Documents. The application was deemed complete on June 30, 2014. The Development Review Commission will hold its first hearing on this matter on July 21 starting at 6 p.m. Please see the Land Use Project Page for additional information.