Development proposal includes venue for Lake Oswego events
A proposed four-story building on the corner of Third Street and B Avenue will feature a mix of uses, including apartment housing, underground parking, food vendors and office space. But developer Miles Haladay says that more than anything else, he wants the building to be known for the events center on the top floor.
"The events center, to me, is the focal point," he says. "We want to have the nicest events center in (the) Portland (area) — that's our goal."
Miles Haladay and his father, Jay Haladay, first shared their plans for the building in January. Since then, they've been working with the City and nearby neighbors to refine their initial design.
Now the Haladays say they're getting ready to officially submit their development application for evaluation by City staff and the Development Review Commission, and they're confident that they've reached a design that will have something for everyone.
"It will fit in with the village feel, as well as the more modern uses that we're looking to do," says Carey Haladay, Miles Haladay's wife and another member of the family involved in the project.
10 Branch is the Haladay family company — the name refers to Jay Haladay and his wife, their four adult children and the children's spouses — and many of those family members live in Lake Oswego. Miles Haladay, who lives in First Addition, says that connection with the community is what will allow the family to create a building that will best serve the needs of the area.
"Lake Oswego has a ton to offer," Carey Haladay says. "All the Haladays grew up in Lake Oswego, so we're really ingrained in this community."
A portion of the proposed building will serve as the headquarters for 10 Branch, but the Haladays say the real goal for the building is to offer features that they see as currently lacking in downtown Lake Oswego, starting with the events center. The plans for the 8,000-square-foot venue have undergone a few refinements in the past six months in response to City and neighborhood input.
The roof has been flattened out, which lowers the overall height of the building to below the 60-foot limit specified by City code. It also gave the designers the opportunity to break up the building's structure with varying top heights, and to enlarge a secondary outdoor deck on the west side of the building to 1,000 square feet.
Other features have remained from the start, including a full-size kitchen and a large south-facing deck with a view of Mount Hood. The orientation is deliberate, an effort to help the building serve as a transition from the neighborhood to downtown and to make sure the events center doesn't bother neighbors.
"One of the features we've budgeted for is extraordinary soundproofing," Miles Haladay says.
The 4,500-square-foot indoor section of the events center is designed to seat 250 people, with room for another 250 on the southern outdoor deck. That's in keeping with the Haladays' goal of providing a larger space for gatherings than anything currently available in Lake Oswego.
The lack of a large meeting space has been a problem for Lake Oswego neighborhood associations, parent-teacher organizations and even the City itself when it seeks venues for events such as the annual City Council open house, so the Haladays expect they'll quickly find a list of interested clients.
"Fortunately, Lake Oswego is a small place," Carey Haladay says. "Most people who frequent downtown Lake Oswego will know it's here by the time we open."
But the events center will be for more than just community meetings. Even though the opening of the building is likely about two years away, the Haladays are already planning out how it will be used. One of the big goals, they say, is to attract Lake Oswego groups that have already gotten used to trekking up to Portland for offsite business meetings and other gatherings.
The family plans to operate the center through a separate company called Luminary Gatherings, which has been incorporated under the leadership of Carey Haladay; Miles Haladay's sister, Taryn Hatchel; and his sister-in-law, Sonal Haladay. The trio say they're hoping to start booking guests as early as a year before the building opens.
"We want people to be able to stay in Lake Oswego to host some of these things," Sonal Haladay says.
The Haladays say they envision the center as more of an intimate, full-service venue than just an open space. The center will feature a large kitchen — which Luminary Gatherings tentatively plans to staff with its own chefs — so that interested groups can host events such as dinners and brunches as well.
The events center is designed to "bring the outdoors inside," with sliding glass doors at the entrance to the 2,500-square-foot outdoor deck and large inside windows on the side facing Mount Hood. Portions of the inside could also be separated off for smaller events.
Other design aspects also reflect the goal of creating a gathering space for the community. The front corner of the building — the side facing the intersection of B Avenue and Third Street — will feature a glass "lantern" incorporated into the design, with large windows that allow light to shine out.
Sonal Haladay says the design is intended to reference a tradition from Lake Oswego's mining days, when residents would hold town meetings by the light of a lantern hung
on the Peg Tree, a Heritage Tree in what is now Foothills Park.
The office space on the building's middle floors is intended to look modern and industrial, with 12-foot ceilings and exposed concrete. Some of the office space will become the new headquarters of 10 Branch, while the rest will be available for other tenants — including some "flex space" reserved for individuals who want to lease standalone offices.
"We're kind of bringing more of the downtown (Portland) feel to Lake Oswego in terms of the office space," Carey Haladay says.
If the development review process goes smoothly, Miles Haladay says he hopes construction could begin next year, with the building completed by the summer of 2019.