Initial Concepts

Activate the Square

Above: Confluence of transit and pedestrian connections. Click to enlarge.

Located at the heart of Pioneer Square, the Grand Central Block is at the confluence of major transit and pedestrian activity. Improving connections in and around the buildings will increase activity, community engagement, and pedestrian experience in the square. A sense of openness and porosity along the eastern façade will invite park goers into the building and stretch interior activity out into the park.

Left: The Porch — an open-air park-facing retail front.

Below: The Grand Passage — a through-block connection between the park and First Avenue.

Below: View of Grand Central Block from Occidental Park.

The new waterfront park and planned First Avenue Streetcar can be connected to Occidental Square with a bright through-block connection — The Grand Passage. Park-facing retail will be transformed into a “Porch” on the park while respecting the historic fabric of the buildings.

The new waterfront park and planned First Avenue Streetcar can be connected to Occidental Square with a bright through-block connection — The Grand Passage. Park-facing retail will be transformed into a “Porch” on the park while respecting the historic fabric of the buildings.

Rehabilitate the Buildings

Left: Grand Central with its original decorative parapet.

Unreinforced masonry buildings are beautiful, but they are susceptible to damage. For instance, Grand Central once had a decorative parapet–but its crown was lost during the 1949 Earthquake. Other parts of the buildings are damaged and rapidly deteriorating.

Preserving, protecting, and restoring damaged or lost features will ensure that the history of the buildings–and the neighborhood–is kept alive.

Electrical, mechanical, and plumbing upgrades are in much need of replacement to meet modern-day needs, while ADA and fire-safety upgrades will ensure that the premises are accessible and safe for everyone.

Sustainability will be a priority with improvements to energy, water, and stormwater infrastructure surpassing current code requirements. The project plans to incorporate sustainable building standards like LEED, WELL Building, Living Building Challenge, and the 2030 Challenge for Buildings.

Adapt the Use

In alignment with Pioneer Square’s 2020 Neighborhood Plan, the rehabilitation project is proposing to adapt the current office space to multifamily housing units which will support over 200 residents living above ground-floor retail. Current concepts are assessing four additional floors above Grand Central and two additional floors above Buttnick, all of which are being considered within current zoning allowances and historic preservation guidelines.

With a 24-hour component added to the neighborhood, increased residential housing responds to the district’s needs and provides financial resources needed to support the rehabilitation work.

Do you have comments or ideas? We'd love to hear from you.

3 + 11 =

© 2017 Unico Properties