A new presentation to the Glendale Design Review Board offers a look at glossy new renderings for Onni Group's proposed tower complex at 601 N. Brand Boulevard.

Looking west across Brand BoulevardSolomon Cordwell Buenz

Last year, the Glendale City Council moved to approve Stage I Preliminary Design Review for the project, which is planned just south of the 134 Freeway. Plans call for retaining an existing 14-story office tower and parking garage, while clearing an adjoining surface lot to make way for the construction of twin 36-story towers featuring 858 one- and two-bedroom apartments with parking for 942 vehicles and 5,600 square feet of ground-floor commercial space.

To permit the project, Glendale will require that 129 of the apartments be set aside for rent as very low-income affordable housing. That set-aside allows the project to comply with the city's inclusionary housing requirement, and also makes 601 Brand eligible for density bonus incentives and waivers of design regulations.

Landmark cornerSolomon Cordwell Buenz

Solomon Cordwell Buenz is designing the buildings, which would be the tallest structures in Glendale, rising 380 feet in height. The project, in addition to housing, would feature a new public plaza, as well as co-working spaces, a fitness center, lounges, and amenity decks at both rooftops.

"A Retail program reaches out towards - but not quite on - the actual corner of Brand and Sanchez and serves as the crucial fourth side to both contain and create the new urban Plaza," reads a narrative included with the presentation. "The Retail and tenant amenities program together form a sheltering arm against the noise of the Freeway, and allow the towers to remain very simple and understated above: interesting but quiet northern facades face the freeway and form a hard edge, while the southern expression is defined by the soft and graceful curves of the balconies facing the occupied open spaces below and act as a substantial mitigator to excess solar gain into the units themselves."

Building entranceSolomon Cordwell Buenz

The Design Review Board is expected to weigh in on several elements of the project, including instructions to refine the project's design at Brand and Sanchez Drive to create a landmark entrance to the northern end of Downtown Glendale, as well as its lobbies, entrances, and landscaping.

Onni is one of three firms which have recently pitched high-rise buildings for Downtown Glendale, joining proposals for a standalone hotel tower to the north across the 134 Freeway and a 24-story building which could sprout on the opposite side of Brand Boulevard. The latter property was recently listed for sale.

PlazaSolomon Cordwell Buenz

Other upcoming projects from Onni include an under-construction apartment tower in Downtown Los Angeles, as well as new high-rise buildings planned in Hollywood and Mid-Wilshire.

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