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SEATTLE-Callison Architecture is back at the computer following an early review meeting with the city’s design review board regarding the proposed expansion of the Sheraton Hotel & Towers here.The proposed 420-room tower would make it the city’s largest hotel, with 1,260 rooms. Located one-half block from the Washington State Convention & Trade Center, the second tower would make it the only downtown hotel able to house conventions of more than 1,000 people, a segment of the industry the city has heretofore not been able to attract because meeting managers generally prefer to have their conventioneers housed in a single location.The new tower is to be constructed on what is now a parking lot south of the existing hotel but in the same block, which is bordered by Sixth and Seventh avenues and by Pike and Union streets. Hotel general manager Terry Botten tells GlobeSt.com that Callison and the hotel owners — a joint venture of Metropolitan Life Insurance, Starwood Hotels & Resorts, and Seventh Avenue Associates — presented three designs for towers between 19- and 22-stories, all of which share a three-story podium with the first tower. “We’re now taking some of board’s recommendations and redesigning or reconfiguring or adding or subtracting as necessary,” she says. Vince Lyon, the city’s design review program manager tells GlobeSt.com that the design board had several suggestions. Among other things, Lyon says board members told the hotel owners that they would like to see a little more robust retailing or architectural elements at the corner of 7th and Union and more design alternatives for the truck loading area, which originally was slated for 7th and Pike but has since been pushed onto Union Street.However it turns out, Botten says the estimated $50-million project will include an expansion of the hotel’s principal ballroom to 18,000 sf from 14,000 sf; an expansion of its junior ballroom to 9,500 sf from 4,700 sf; the addition of an as-yet-undetermined amount of office space; and an expanded laundry area and banquet kitchen to accommodate the extra guest rooms. The hotel’s restaurant and bar also will be revamped, she says. The amount of added retail space is still in flux.If approval is granted, construction could begin this time next year and be complete two years later.

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