Developer eyes Milwaukie bowling alley for 178-unit project
A shuttered bowling alley in Milwaukie may become the site of a six-story residential building with 178 units, including a two-unit live/work units on the ground floor.
Pahlisch Commercial, Inc., a real estate developer based in Bend, wants to raze the Kellogg Bowl building on the 1.94-acre piece of land at the northern end of Milwaukie's downtown district east of Southeast Main Street, according to land-use applications for the Henley Place apartment building submitted to the city.
Kellogg Bowl owners Bill Oetken and Champ Husted, along with bowling alley General Manager Roxanne Oetken, wrote in December that they were "broken hearted" to have to announce the alley's permanent closure after a 58-year run. Saying it was "a very difficult decision," they wrote that they could not endure state-mandated shutdowns during the COVID-19 pandemic.
"We will shed tears and share lots of memories," they wrote in a joint statement. "We appreciate each and every one of you and look forward to seeing you continue to enjoy this incredible sport and support the (bowling) centers that do survive this unprecedented pandemic."
A flagpole-shaped lot on the property provides vehicular access from Southeast Main Street to the Kellogg Bowl building. Access to the proposed apartments would be along a shared driveway with two rows of angled parking, also used by the adjacent Pietro's Pizza and Veterinary Cancer & Surgery Specialists.
Southeast 23rd Avenue ends next to the property's eastern side and is shown on preliminary plans to be used as a gated emergency-only access. In a letter to the city, Clackamas Fire has raised concerns about emergency access to the proposed six-story structure.
Developers applying to the city triggered design review because the proposed building does not meet the city code's criteria for exterior wall standards. According to city staff's recommendation for approval, the developer's response demonstrated "substantial consistency" with the purpose of the design codes.
"Henley Place is built to evoke a sense of permanence and is compatible with downtown Milwaukie and the surrounding built and natural environment," the developers wrote in their application.
Some citizens are taking issue with the application because it proposes construction of fewer parking spaces than tenants, as part of the city's effort to encourage people to use public transit. Structured parking will be provided on the ground floor, with additional parking outside the building.
Developers also propose disturbing a designated natural resource area on the construction site. An existing paved parking area is adjacent to an off-site pond, and the pond formed by Spring Creek extends onto the adjacent lot to the south and constitutes a protected water feature.
Henley Place faced a July 8 hearing in front of the Design and Landmarks Committee. Future hearings will include the Planning Commission and potentially the Milwaukie City Council.
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