Plans for two new apartment complexes on Lincoln Boulevard between Colorado Avenue and Interstate 10 are moving forward, bringing an additional 166 units to the stretch of road. Combined with four neighboring projects currently underway, a total of 623 units are slated for development along the stretch of busy roadway.

A five-story, 66-unit building with 5,324 square feet of retail will replace the Aaron Brothers Art and Framing store at 1641 Lincoln Boulevard. The Architectural Review Board signed off on the plans Monday.

Artist renderings of the project show wooden panels framing balcony lined apartments. The property is four stories at Lincoln Boulevard and five stories at the alley. The building has a 10-foot setback from the property line, resulting in a 20-foot sidewalk along Lincoln Boulevard.

Eventually, residents will be able to enjoy landscaped outdoor terraces, a roof deck and a water feature. The architect from Killefer Flammang Architects (KFA) drew inspiration for the contemporary design from the Pacific Electric streetcar that once provided passenger excursions to the beach in Santa Monica, according to a staff report.

The complex is sandwiched between two separate buildings being developed by Century West Partners called the “Lincoln Boulevard Collection.” To the north, the former home of Norms Restaurant will eventually become a 5-story, 100 unit complex. To the south, a massive, 5-story, 193-unit building is also coming to the corner.

Across the street, a WNMS building at 1650 Lincoln Boulevard is also moving toward the Planning Commission this summer after receiving a critique from the Architectural Review Board Monday. The five-story, 100-unit building will replace the existing brick offices built in 1954 and was also designed by KFA. Current renderings show an all glass façade, with floor to ceiling windows in the units. The board criticized the overall design of building noting a “harsh, corporate feel.” A Mel’s Diner will be built just south of the location.

WNMS is also redeveloping the nearby Denny’s at Colorado and Lincoln with a 5-story, 100-unit apartment complex.

Completing the transformation, Community Corp has already broken ground on a nearby 64-unit complex that will be all affordable housing.

The plans are in step with the current version of the Santa Monica Downtown Community Plan (DCP), which nicknames the street “Mixed-Use Boulevard.” City planners envision a residential community where cafes, restaurants and convenient shops “activate the street.” Architects have been directed to position trees and landscaping near the curb to buffer pedestrians from the flow of traffic.

 

kate@smdp.com

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