Photo tour of K Street’s 700 block

The massive redevelopment project on the 700 block of K Street will be submitted to the city’s building department for approval in October, and if approved, work could begin as early as the end of this year.

“We’re looking to break ground in (February or March) of 2012, but it might be sooner,” said Ali Youssefi of CFY Development.

The approximately $47.7 million project is a collaboration between D&S Development, Inc., and CFY Development. It will be a mixed-use project with apartments, retail spaces, restaurant/bar spaces and an approximately 15,000-square-foot live music venue.

“We really want this to be a catalyst for the rest of the area,” said Bay Miry of D&S Development.

For more information on the project, its funding and how it got to where it is, click here.

Both Youssefi and Miry said they don’t want to think of the project in terms of what it compares to in other cities.

“This isn’t Polk Street in San Francisco, or some place in Portland, or the gaslight district in San Diego” Youssefi said. “Sacramento is sort of creating its own identity. We want this to be a place people use as an example.”

Miry agreed, adding, “We want this to be K Street.”

A former Men’s Wearhouse will be a music venue with ceilings raised even higher and a mezzanine installed.

The project area stretches all along K street and 180 feet back along Seventh and Eighth streets to the alley. The 90 feet fronting K Street will maintain a similar footprint, but the rearward 90 feet will be demolished, and mid-rise apartment buildings with two levels of parking will be built.

“There’s going to be a courtyard between the new construction and the historic buildings,” Youssefi said, adding that the courtyard will be landscaped and serve as a space where people living in both the all-new buildings and the apartments incorporated into the original buildings will be able to go.

Part of the project involves thinking beyond the ground-to-ceiling spaces and making creative use of rooftops and basements.

Rooftop seating will be available for a ground-floor restaurant, and an elevator will be near the parapet in the foreground.

A basement club will be viewable from the ground floor, which will serve as a mezzanine with a large staircase.

Outdoor seating will be a big part of the restaurants on the block, with one slated to make use of a patio that extends 10 to 15 feet into the sidewalk.

The city plans to bring cars back to K Street by November, but the 700 block will still remain free of vehicular traffic.

“We’re going to get a lot of visibility when cars come back,” Youssefi said. “K Street was a big business district until they closed it off to cars, and that was really a failed experiment.”

The old Tower Records space is envisioned to house a national retailer.

Miry said other projects in the area are contributing to its return from being a blighted area.

“The project over on the 1000 block (composed of Dive Bar, Pizza Rock and District 30) is one aspect, and the moving of the Greyhound station (from nearby L Street to Richards Boulevard) has really helped, too,” Miry said.

“We’re down here every day, so we really notice the difference,” Youssefi agreed.

The estimated build time for the project is just under two years, he said.

The project is receiving redevelopment funds from the Sacramento Housing and Redevelopment Agency, which is currently a controversial subject. On the statewide level, redevelopment agencies are fighting for their existence, but Youssefi said the 700 block of K Street has already secured the funding and will be built.

“This project could be one of the last of its kind,” he said.

The end goal, according to Miry and Youssefi, is to return K Street to its former status as one of the vibrant sectors downtown and bring mixed-use retail, restaurant, entertainment and residential entities to downtown.

The space on the corner of Eighth Street will have its side “opened up” with windows.

This historical photo shows the building. Developers plan to bring back the windows.

Sixty percent of the project is dedicated as affordable housing. The other 40 percent will be market-rate housing.

“It’s going to bring a good mix of workforce housing as well as apartments that are as nice as any downtown,” Miry said.

Youssefi said there is one overarching reason the project excites him.

“I grew up in Sacramento,” he said. “To be a part of this project, which will be a catalyst for revitalizing downtown, that’s exciting”

Brandon Darnell is a staff reporter for The Sacramento Press. Follow him on Twitter @Brandon_Darnell.

Editorial Note: A correction has been made to this story after it was published.

Conversation Express your views, debate, and be heard with those in your area closest to the issue. RSS Feed

August 30, 2011 | 10:49 PM

What about the 800 block? I haven’t heard anything about that recently. Weren’t the two projects approved as companion pieces? I thought the reason the council gave for this smaller project rather than the Boqueria was that they could be done immediately.

August 30, 2011 | 11:14 PM

That project will be the subject of a future article and photo essay.

Article Author
August 31, 2011 | 7:18 AM

From January:

http://www.sacramentopress.com/headline/44761/K_Street_now_A_photo_essay

“Another potential historic landmark is the former Tower Records at 726 K St. Developers plan to restore the 1970s mural and use the space for retail.”

Still planning on keeping the mural? If a national retail chain goes in that space, they may not find it to be their flavor. Any more word about this?

August 31, 2011 | 8:14 AM

Yes, the plan is still to keep the mural–part of the project will include its restoration.

August 31, 2011 | 9:38 AM

Thanks!

August 31, 2011 | 12:15 PM

Another question on the 800 block would be what happen to the Sheraton sale funds that were set aside for future Taylor projects? Will/Can those funds be used for the project?

August 31, 2011 | 8:15 PM

The proposal for the 800 block put forth by Taylor included those funds in its prospectus. I don’t know if those funds are affected by the changes to redevelopment law that took effect this year, but was under the impression that those funds are separate from SHRA redevelopment funds from TIF. But because that proposal also asked for some redevelopment funds, and the money wasn’t encumbered yet, it may not be immediately available. It might be possible to phase the construction on the 800 block, since it consists of several components–perhaps they could rehab the Bel-Vue building first, then construct the building at 8th & K later, or something like that.

September 1, 2011 | 10:22 AM

Yeah, they are seperate from SHRA redevelopment funds. I just wasn’t sure if they were proposing using strictly the sheraton funds, or were they also asking for SHRA funds as well.

If not this project, I would like to get an idea what they plan on doing with the funds. There were timelines set in place for Taylor to use those funds when the sales was completed.

September 1, 2011 | 12:36 PM

Good question–although considering Taylor is also involved with the pending arena project, maybe he has other ideas about where the money should go? The city council recently extended the right to negotiate with Taylor’s group re the 800 block by another six months, so one assumes they are still talking.

August 31, 2011 | 1:04 PM

This is fantastic. It’s projects like these that make Sacramento unique, and I couldn’t be any more excited to stick around and watch it all come to life.

August 31, 2011 | 1:12 PM

Great ideas and definitely looking forward to seeing this come together

August 31, 2011 | 7:39 PM

If Mr Miry wanted a destination spot for Sacramento…he should have designed one. All these tens of millions of dollars we have thrown down this rat hole…and what do we get… more housing for the down and out and empty retail space…

There is a reason Downtown Plaza is empty…it is because the city instead of focusing on market rate housing and building a customer base for businesses to cater to, instead has catered to empty store fronts and below market rate housing.

August 31, 2011 | 7:44 PM

I would have said something very similar about the corner of 14th and R a couple years ago.

August 31, 2011 | 8:20 PM

Wow, lots of untrue things in Rhys02′s posts…looking at the income thresholds and price points for the residential units on the 700 block, I’d call them more for the “up and coming” than the “down and out”–and some of them are in fact market-rate units. Nor is Downtown Plaza empty: they’re in rough shape, of course, because I’m sure Westfield has never wanted to compete too much with their own mall in Roseville, and of course there’s that whole “Great Recession” thing that has people so upset lately. And while lots of money has been spent on K Street over the years, those failed efforts were based on turning downtown into a suburban-style mall for suburban visitors to visit. This project will turn it back into what it was when K Street worked: a living, mixed-use urban neighborhood. We’re finally on the right track, and that is something to applaud.

September 1, 2011 | 9:54 AM

We’re with Burg. Build a foundation based on a thriving live/work community, we can sculpt the future from there.

September 11, 2011 | 12:18 PM

I wonder what kind of noise mitigation they are going to have to do for neighborhood businesses?

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