After several months of redesigns based on conversations with Oak Street neighbors, developers will seek the city’s permission this month to build a four-story condo near Leonidas Street with a gym on the first floor.
Since it was introduced to neighbors last fall, developer George Fowler IV and architect Charles Neyrey have reduced the height of the Oak Lofts building from five stories to four, for a total of 22 condo units. The gym will also be smaller than originally planned, now about 1,600 square feet, Neyrey told the Carrollton Riverbend Neighborhood Association on Thursday evening.
The building will combine a mix of traditional and modern architecture, just as Oak Street itself is, Neyrey said. The front will be in three sections — the left side will be mostly stucco, the right side will be brick masonry, and the two will be bridged by a center section of recovered wood, Neyrey said. The design also calls for a series of ledges and other structures to add a sense of depth to the building.
“The idea is to get some shadows, some textures to the face of it, so it’s not just flat,” Neyrey said.
The new design reduces the height to below the 50-foot limit in the area, with a 14-foot ground floor and three 11-foot upper stories. The fourth floor will be recessed from the front, and the parts of it visible from the ground will be built of glass and metal, creating a reflective surface that will blend with the sky, Neyrey said.
With 45 parking spaces, the current design exceeds the city’s parking requirements, Neyrey said. Six spaces would be required for the gym, based on its floor area, and the 22 condo units would be required to have a total of 33 spaces. Some neighbors raised concerns that some condos with only a single space may result in residents parking on the street, but association member Drew Ward said the design of the building actually restores some on-street parking by eliminating “no parking” areas on the block currently.
The primary aspect of the building that still requires city permission is total size of the development, which exceeds 10,000 square feet, and the density, as the 22 units are more than would be allowed on a lot of that size. The Carrollton Riverbend Neighborhood Association voted without dissension to support the requests, noting the developer’s willingness to listen to neighbors and a general support for the project across the neighborhood.
“This has been an ongoing process, and the feedback is noticeably incorporated,” said CRNA president Barry Brantley.
The Oak Lofts project will appear before the City Planning Commission on May 27, and Neyrey said the developer currently hopes to start construction in July, barring any unexpected delays.