Tag Archives: Kirk Peterson

‘Moorish-style palace’ for Telegraph Ave. is step closer

Image: Kirk E. Peterson & Associates
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A six-story, mixed-use, Moorish, palace-like structure inspired by Italian hill towns is one step closer to being built on Berkeley’s iconic Telegraph Avenue after the project sailed through a review by the city’s Zoning Adjustments Board last week.

ZAB commissioners were generally receptive to the building’s unusual design, according to Commissioner Steven Donaldson.

Addressing the architect of the project, Kirk E. Peterson, ZAB Commissioner Shoshana O’Keefe said she approved of the design. “It’s weird and I like that,” she said. O’Keefe said she grew up in Berkeley, had always appreciated the “weirdness” of Telegraph Avenue, and that it was good to see something unusual, “a little different,” proposed for the area. … Continue reading »

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Berkeley settles case with blighted Telegraph lot owner

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The city of Berkeley and Ken Sarachan have settled a lawsuit over his empty lot at 2501 Haste St. on the corner of Telegraph Avenue, clearing the way for the construction of a a six-story, mixed-use, Moorish, palace-like structure inspired by Italian hill towns, Tibetan forts and the rock-cut architecture of Petra in Jordan.

Under the settlement, Berkeley agreed to drop its lawsuit to force Sarachan to pay $640,000 in liens or have the city sell the lot at auction. In exchange, Sarachan agreed to meet specific deadlines to pursue and build something on the lot that has been vacant for more than 20 years. … Continue reading »

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Popular restaurants closed by fires face further delays

All that remains of the Sequoia Building is the one-story façade on Telegraph that housed Café Intermezzo and Raleigh's. Photos: Lance Knobel
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It looks like a number of Berkeley restaurants won’t be recovering as quickly as hoped from a recent set of fires.

The Daily Californian is reporting that the proposal to erect temporary tents to replace Café Intermezzo and Café Raleigh, which were destroyed Nov. 18 when the Sequoia Building burned down, hasn’t gone forward. Property owner Greg Ent submitted a permit application in January, but has not responded to changes requested in mid-March by the city. Ent has also stopped talking to the project’s architect, Kirk Peterson, according to the Daily Cal.

“The latest I’ve heard is a rumor that the (Ent’s) insurance company’s money couldn’t be used for the temporary structures,” City councilmember Kriss Worthington told the paper. “That may mean the owner of the building has switched gears from the temporary operation into looking at getting into a permanent building operation.” … Continue reading »

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What did you think about the new design for Telegraph?

The design. Courtesy: Kirk E. Peterson & Associates
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Yesterday we asked our readers what they thought of the new Kirk Peterson design for a new building to go on the northeast corner of Telegraph and Haste. A respectable 256 of you responded to our unscientific, imperfectly worded poll, and the verdict is that more of you like it than hate it (45% versus 26%).

A significant number (13%) are not sure what to make of the proposal. While many (16%) are simply surprised that anything at all … Continue reading »

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Community

What do you think of new building proposal on Telegraph?

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Berkeley property owner and developer Ken Sarachan has unveiled a proposal for a Moorish fortress-like building to go on the vacant lot on the north-east corner of Telegraph and Haste in Berkeley. Read the details in our story published today.

What do you think of the designs, which were created by local architect Kirk Peterson? Take our (unscientific) poll and we’ll publish the results Friday afternoon.

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Telegraph Ave property owner shows plans for vacant site

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The owner of a blighted lot at Telegraph and Haste that has been vacant for more than two decades presented his plans for a fortress-like building on the property, although he said he wouldn’t build anything there as long as the city of Berkeley had a lawsuit hanging over him regarding the site.

Ken Sarachan, who bought the north-west corner lot on Telegraph and Haste in 1994, has visions for a Moorish palace-like structure inspired by Italian hill towns, Tibetan forts and the rock-cut architecture of Petra in Jordan. Architect Kirk Peterson introduced the blueprints and renderings for the project, known as “La Fortaleza” (as in “fortress” or “stronghold”), on Tuesday evening to a small group of interested parties gathered at Caffe Med a few doors down from the lot in question on Telegraph Avenue. … Continue reading »

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Acheson Commons: Large change for downtown

Aerial from NE
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One of the first projects to be built under Berkeley’s recently adopted Downtown Area Plan will be Acheson Commons which will transform the entire city block bordered by University Avenue, Shattuck and Walnut streets, and Berkeley Way.

The project, which has been under discussion for some time, was the subject of a rare joint meeting of the Landmarks Preservation Commission and the Design Review Committee on March 29.

The proposal for the area sees the creation of 205 new residential units and above-ground floor retail space. The developer is Equity Residential, of Chicago which builds and owns rental housing projects nationwide. EQR previously purchased the Bachenheimer Building at 2119 University Avenue from local developer Patrick Kennedy, and subsequently bought the adjacent properties. … Continue reading »

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Telegraph site owner plans for temporary resurrection

sequoia
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The owners of the old Sequoia Building site on the corner of Telegraph and Haste last week submitted plans to the city of Berkeley to enable them to reopen Raleigh’s and Café Intermezzo, two restaurant businesses that were gutted by the fire that destroyed the 1916 building on November 18th, 2011. If approved, the plans would also allow them to launch Gabriella’s, a restaurant they owned but had not yet opened on the site, and which also burned down.

Designs, drawn up by Oakland architect Kirk Peterson for owner Greg Ent, call for three canopy-like tents fixed to concrete pads, along with three shipping containers which would be used to house kitchens. The idea is to resurrect the restaurants on a temporary basis while planning a new apartment building to replace the one lost to the fire.

“It will have an ad hoc quality, but could be really fun,” said Peterson. ”It’s a unique application and no-one has ever done this here which puts it into its own category. The owners want to get their businesses up and running again and the city is interested in moving things along as quickly as possible to help the neighborhood.” … Continue reading »

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A lukewarm review for new Berkeley building

New Californian building on Trader Joe's opening day.
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The building which houses Berkeley’s newly opened Trader Joe’s was given a lukewarm review by the Chronicle’s urban design writer John King this weekend.

While King welcomed the five story mixed-use building as an example of the sort of smart growth cities like Berkeley need, he was less than enthusiasic about its design, calling it “more overstuffed than urbane”.

The New Californian building, as it is called, comprises 148 apartments as well as Berkeley’s first Trader Joe’s. In style terms, it … Continue reading »

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