A few days ago we posted that Ellicott Development was proposing the demolition and possible rebuild of 878 Elmwood Avenue. The project site also includes 880 Elmwood Avenue, which was previously purchased by the developer. Ellicott attributes the demolition and rebuild scenario to the lack of structural integrity and safety of the existing building – something they discovered after they purchased the vacant three-story, three-family home, with the intent to restore. Ellicott noted that the structure was too far gone to make anything work, due to a fire in July of 2014.
The developer has now unveiled its latest intentions for the two parcels: a 3-story multi-family residential structure with 14 residential apartment units, designed by Abstract Architecture. The new design pays homage to the original structure, and will feature clapboard siding and composite ornamental trim on the upper floors, a circular bay, masonry on the ground floor of the primary elevation, with recessed patios on the second and third floors. The project includes:
- Off-street parking located at the rear, which would be accessed from the existing driveway located on the 878 Elmwood parcel.
- The existing driveway for the 880 Elmwood parcel would be eliminated with the combination of the parcels.
- A portion of the parking spaces will be covered where the upper floors of the proposed structure overhang the ground floor at the rear.
- This covered area will also provide space for resident bicycle storage.
Ellicott is currently seeking Green Code variances, such as a 12′ front yard building setback (lead image), to more align with the residential aesthetics of the block. The thought here is that a curbside building would look out of place, since the rest of the block’s houses are set back even further, with front yards. The developer is also proposing a 12′ ground story height, instead of the Green Code’s required 15′ standard. This is due to the building being completely residential, and not mixed use. They are also proposing 61% ground floor transparency, because there will be no commercial storefront – the Code requires 70%.
This proposed design is meant to play off the architectural integrity of the Elmwood Village, particularly its residential component. Due to COVID-19, there is an abundance of available commercial spaces on the street, while the demand for residential remains high.