Developer Ensemble Real Estate hopes to remove the partially collapsed Piers 34 and 35, replace them with a new pier, and build a 204 unit, 12-floor residential building on top of it.
“The proposal is to completely remove the pier – it is not structurally able to carry the building – and to re-orient a new pier in the shallower water,” project architect David Ertz, of Cope Linder, told the city planning commission during an information only session earlier this month.
The current plan calls for a lower-level fitness center, but that could be moved to a higher floor and replaced by retail “if retail proves viable in this location,” Ertz said.
The second level has residential units on the two most visible facades and parking covered by screening, he said. A terrace level will include a green roof and tree planters to help with stormwater management, and will include large, private terraces for residents.
The placement of the building minimizes the impact of views on nearby Dockside condos, he said.
The facade of the building is composed of multi-floor, vertical panels that were “loosely inspired by a flickering of light on the water,” Ertz said.
To develop this building as planned, Ensemble will need the planning commission's approval to exceed the 100-foot height limit on buildings within the Central Delaware, which extends from Oregon to Allegheny avenues.
“If you're going to go over the (height) limitations of the plan, then we need to know ...what's above and beyond the developer's interest to the public interest here?” asked Commissioner Nancy Rogo-Trainer.
“What's the quid pro quo?” echoed Vice Chairman Joe Syrnick.