Kirkland Parkplace Redux: Will they get it right this time? (Poll)

A 2010 drawing of the approved plans for Kirkland Parkplace.

A 2010 drawing of the approved plans for Kirkland Parkplace.

Kirkland Parkplace has a new developer with a new plan. As you may recall, the previous developer, Touchstone, fought for and eventually won concessions from the city for 1.7 million square feet of office space plus retail, a new QFC, gymnasium and hotel. Many in our community approved of the plans but a vocal minority opposed the development. Among the many complaints were parking utilization, traffic impacts and a design which called for eight story office buildings.

The new plans are still in the works but the project is much smaller in scale. Under Talon’s proposal, the new Kirkland Parkplace will result in development of  650,000 square feet of office space (reduced by 50% from Touchstone’s plans), 300,000 square feet of apartments and 210,000 square feet of retail. There will be no new hotel at the new Kirkland Parkplace.

Yes, QFC will roughly double in size, just as previously planned. The developer hopes to see shovels in the dirt as soon as 12 months from now.

The following is a press release from Talon:

To Undergo Exciting Revitalization Talon Private Capital submits new master plan to kick-off project

Talon Private Capital, a Seattle-based real estate investment firm, announced it has submitted a proposed new master plan and design guidelines to the City of Kirkland that outlines the future redevelopment of Kirkland Parkplace—an entertainment/retail/office park built in 1982. Talon Private Capital was recently selected as the master developer of the project.

The new plan is designed to support a mixed-use, pedestrian-oriented sustainable environment with more than two acres of courtyards and plazas including public rooftop space, outdoor art and a network of pedestrian connections leading to adjoining streets and Peter Kirk Park. The mix of uses will include retail/entertainment, office and housing.

“We believe this plan is aligned with the distinct character of downtown Kirkland and also reflects the scale, amenities and mix of uses supported by the community and the market,” said Bill Pollard, principal of Talon. “In the coming months we will be meeting with community leaders and neighbors to share information, gain input and provide updates about the project.”
A previous endeavor to entitle the project for 1.75 million square feet of space, led by Touchstone, was approved by the city in 2010 but was ultimately sidelined due to lingering effects of the 2008 financial crisis.

The new scaled-down master plan includes 210,000 square feet of retail/entertainment space, 300,000 square feet of apartment homes, and 650,000 square feet of office space. Significant changes include a 50 percent reduction in office space, the addition of multi-family housing and the elimination of a previously approved hotel.

“We are excited to create a new community gathering place that offers a great mix of retail, restaurants, open space and housing that will add to the energy of downtown,” said Jim Neal, principal of Talon. “The addition of new office space will also provide options for companies that want to expand or locate in Kirkland.”