The Overton, the proposed 250′ tower between NW 12th and 13th in the Pearl, is coming along nicely. After a series of design advice sessions with the city, the ZGF and Ankrom Moisan design team has returned with a simplified podium, a gradient facade, and a more defined presence at street level. The podium, which has changed significantly from what was originally envisioned, is now a two-story, full block low-rise complex of townhomes and live/work spaces.
The materiality of the podium has also been revised for better balance and continuity. The dark clinker brick facade is now accentuated with metal panels and vertical wood elements at the townhome entryways. There are setbacks for the lobby entrances on both Overton and Pettygrove Streets which create small plaza-like nooks for retail and tenant use.
The tower portion has retained its grid-rotated form, but is now proposed with stainless steel tiles instead of brown, raspberry and mahogany colored metal panels. A mix of matte and metallic silver, bronze, and purple steel tiles will give the tower portion a distinctive and dynamic appearance. The dark to light gradient of the tower is designed to enhance the grounding effect of the darker base. The roof of the podium is now proposed with an expanded wood deck for tenant use surrounded by a larger rainwater absorbing ecoroof.
The 13th Avenue raised sidewalk is also slated to be wood instead of concrete, which will provide a softer, welcoming feel to the live/work units’ base. I am pleased to see the continuation of these historic 13th Avenue loading docks as the Pearl District expands northward. They are an important means of maintaining the Pearl district’s essential character, a sense of place and history that has been radically changed over the last two decades. Overall, I like the direction this building is heading, and how it fits into the maturing urban neighborhood around it.