A final presentation to the Pasadena Design Commission reveals another refresh for a proposed single-room occupancy (SRO) apartment building just south of the 210 Freeway.

The project, last seen before the Design Commission in January 2023, is slated for a mid-block property located at 1501-1525 E. Walnut Street, where it would replace an auto body repair shop. The proposed four-story, approximately 46,000-square-foot building would feature 83 apartments - all of which are described as SRO units. Plans also call for a single caretaker unit for an on-site manager is also proposed, as well as at-grade parking for 45 vehicles.

View looking north from Walnut StreetTyler + Kelly Architecture

Project applicant 1501 Walnut, LLC - an entity managed by Tajen Lee -would set aside 15 of the apartments be set aside for rent by low-, very low-, and medium-income households - fewer than the 30 very low- and medium-income units originally planned, albeit at a deeper level of affordability. The affordable set-aside permits the construction of a larger building than allowed by zoning rules.

Tyler + Kelly Architecture continues to be the design firm attached to 1501 Walnut, which has once again undergone modest changes to account to feedback from the Design Commission. Plans call for an exterior of stucco, aluminum and stone, as well as on-site amenities such as a dog run and a swimming pool.

View looking northwest from Walnut StreetTyler + Kelly Architecture

"The facade patterning results in marginally different, yet complementary types of balcony, parapet and ledge conditions, all of which exhibit simplified construction with appropriate drip edge treatments, stucco fasciae, and metal coping," reads a staff report.

The project joins a handful of other infill apartment buildings planned for properties located along a former railroad right-of-way between Walnut Street and the 210 Freeway, including townhomes and micro-units slated for sites located to the west across Hill Avenue.

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