Architectural renderings show revamped designs of the front and back of Hazelwood Plaza. The proposed, <a href=

Architectural renderings show revamped designs of the front and back of Hazelwood Plaza. The proposed, five-story apartment building on N.E. 102nd Avenue is now sporting two buildings painted in gray and light yellow, after an extensive design change. Courtesy Alberto Rinkevich

Construction could begin as early as November on the proposed $8 million, five-story Hazelwood Plaza apartment complex between Northeast Glisan and East Burnside St. at 222 N.E. 102nd Ave.

Alberto Rinkevich, project manager for the building, presented a preliminary design to the Portland Design Commission in October 2013, but commissioners rejected that design, asking for sturdier materials, more variety in paint choices, additional brick siding and placement of the courtyard in the front rather than the back of the building. Rinkevich revamped the design and presented it again to the commission in February. This time, the commission approved it 4-0.

The new, approved design changes the complex into two five-story apartment buildings of 62 units with tuck-under parking for 44 vehicles, plus one loading space, a central entry plaza and a second-level outdoor deck. “The ground floor is brick and the other four upper floors are a mix of metal and cement board siding,” Rinkevich said. “We replaced almost everything. It’s a new building. We changed all the windows and everything is different. Now it’s a flat roof. We have two different lobbies, one for each building. On one side we have two shops replacing the live/work units we have in the other building.”

HazelwoodPlaza_BackThe new design also now contains metal and wood canopies.

Rinkevich plans to obtain a building permit by early August. He expects construction to begin possibly by November, to be finished by late 2016 or early 2017. He currently has received a few bids from construction companies and is checking into them.

Ricardo Berdichevsky is developing the giant 72,726-square-foot building. The owner is Century18 LLC. At the October 2013 review, Rinkevich and Berdichevsky had asked the commission to let them reduce the depth of the setback for the ground level live/work units along the street from the required 25 feet to 13 feet. They also asked for a reduction in the interior parking lot landscaping to 860 square feet instead of 1,350 square feet. In addition, they requested narrower dimensions between the 80 bikes hanging on the wall rack and a reduction in the loading space from 18 feet to 16 feet. In the February 2015 hearing, they also asked to allow the ground-level retail spaces to be less deep than the 25-foot depth required in the zoning code and to replace the parking lot’s required landscape with the entrance plaza and the second-floor roof garden. “I got all the changes that I asked for from the city,” he said. “They were very happy with the new design.”

Chris Caruso, a planner from the Bureau of Development Services, praised Rinkevich for his revamped design. “He made a significant number of changes,” Caruso said. “He really made an effort to respond to what the commission was asking him to do.”

One of the crucial changes he implemented was to use fewer primary colors. “He scaled that back to a few more subtle colors,” Caruso said.

The building will now be in shades of light yellow and gray with gray brick. Instead of using so much cement siding board, Rinkevich switched to metal panels.

He also added larger ground-floor windows facing the street. The ground-level building elements are made up of gray brick, clear storefront glazing in silver aluminum frames and a gray concrete base that wraps around the entire ground-floor level. The paved front courtyard will have light and dark paving, accented by red canopies above the entries. “He provided a wood-and-concrete custom fence on the back lot line so that the parked car lights won’t shine in people’s backyards,” Caruso said.

Although in the original design he tried to make the large building look like two separate buildings, Rinkevich did not really succeed. However, in the final design he agreed with commission requests by widening the division between the two sections and connecting them by only an outdoor deck on the second level. He also pushed the building back farther, adding an open entry court on the ground level. Another innovation was to conceal the heating and air conditioner venting for each unit inside the shared wall. “You can’t see it as clearly,” Caruso said. “It doesn’t affect the facade as much as some of the other ones do. That was a nice detail.”

Rinkevich also removed two outdoor areas for the residents that were placed in the far back corners of the parking area in the earlier design. “The design commission was never satisfied with that,” Caruso said. “They kept saying it was just not a place people would want to go, which is why we ended up with that nice entry-level court and second-level roof deck.”

Caruso said the two buildings as a whole began to look more cohesive, with window patterns that are repeated and recessed and projections that are more consistent. Instead of the originally designed butterfly roof, Rinkevich added a flat roof. “The butterfly roof wasn’t well integrated into the design,” Caruso said. “All of these repetitive patterns helped to pull the building together.”

Originally, the building was designed to rest on an incline, with four stories on the east and five on the west. In the new design, the project manager added an extra story to the east side, making it five stories.

According to the staff report, all the materials planned for the project are durable high-quality items used throughout the Gateway Plan District and give the building an air of quality and permanence.

For more information about the project, contact Alberto Rinkevich at