As we first reported earlier this year, Ellis Partners is planning to abandon the previously approved plans for a 20-story tower to rise adjacent to the historic Key System Building in Downtown Oakland.
Instead, the firm is now pursuing plans for an 18-story building to rise on the 1100 Broadway site, the top eight floors of which would be cantilevered over the Key System Building for additional square footage without the extra height with the two structures internally connected for continuous floorplates below.
While Oakland’s Design Review Committee has “voiced unanimous support for new development on the site,” its members have also voiced concerns that “the final design be contextual, compatible with its surroundings, and accepted by all segments of the community.”
And as such, the DRC recommended that Gensler return with a revised design for the project, which it did:
But having reviewed the revised design, the City’s Landmarks Preservation Advisory Board, which has also voiced their “support for new development on the site,” has now joined the DRC in expressing their “concerns regarding [a] contextual and compatible design.”
Keep in mind that Ellis Partners, which purchased the long-dormant project site a few months ago, has been aiming to break ground by the end of the year in order to have the new building, a third of which has been pre-leased to the University of California Office of the President, ready for occupancy in late 2019 or early 2020.
We’ll keep you posted and plugged-in.