Time runs out for design approval on proposed building at 627 Dayton Street

The proposed multi-unit residential building would have occupied the site just west of the Edmonds Library, fronting along Dayton Street.  (Photo courtesy City of Edmonds)

The developers of a 17-unit multifamily residential building proposed for just west of the Edmonds Library at 627 Dayton Street have run out of time to secure the necessary design and permitting approvals, putting them back to square one.

The latest design review was submitted by the developer, GBH Holdings, on Nov. 14, 2022, and complied with City of Edmonds development standards that were in place at that time. This began a one-year period during which the design must be approved and the building permit issued. This process requires several steps, including a two-phase public hearing process by the Edmonds Architectural Design Board (ADB) for the design review alone.

According to city officials, the applicant was unable to meet the ADB’s public hearing requirements for both the board’s July and September meetings, and with the one-year clock running down there is no longer sufficient time to complete both the design review/approval and secure a building permit before the Nov. 14 deadline.

“This means that the current application process will lapse,” explained Edmonds Acting Planning Manager Mike Clugston. “When the project lapses it can no longer be revived, and any new project will have to meet the applicable codes.”

Architectural rendering of the proposed 627 Dayton apartment building. Because the developer was unable to complete the full application process within the one-year window, the process has lapsed.

Complicating the process are a number of changes to zoning (the proposed site is now in the BD2 zone) and design standards implemented subsequent to the initial application, and any new submission must comply with these new requirements.

“The current/lapsing application for 627 Dayton was submitted at a time when a multifamily-only building was still allowed at that location,” Clugston continued. “When the application lapses, the developer will no longer be allowed to do a multifamily-only building at 627 Dayton because the standards that apply to the site have changed. Any future application for design review at 627 Dayton will need to be for a mixed-use building meeting the current designated street front standards as laid out in Edmonds City Development Code 16.43.”

Clugston does not know when or if GBH Holdings plans to pursue a new application for this site.

— By Larry Vogel

  1. The “architectural rendering” is a brilliant example of how such people would love to see a soulless, sterile, ugly Edmonds. Thank goodness they failed!

    But there will be more attempts to construct such bland, dreary people boxes.

    1. Nat, for several years now, the City has been intending to rewrite its development (zoning) code — the ordinances that allow buildings like this to happen. If I’m elected to Council, I’ll make code rewrite one of my priorities.

      I believe Edmonds should adopt what’s called a Form Based zoning code. The details are too technical for a comment thread, but the result should be new buildings that better fit existing neighborhoods. We need to assure the updated Comprehensive Plan supports change to Form Based zoning code.

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