Plans for 54-story skyscraper in Emeryville

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The Emeryville Planning Commission on Thursday will host a study session focusing on a proposed mixed commercial/residential project anchored by a 54-story residential tower that would become the tallest structure in the East Bay.

 The Omni Christie Mixed-Use Project, as currently planned, would be built just north of Powell Street between Interstate Highway 80 and Christie Avenue. It would include a the 54-story tower with 638 residential units; a separate 16-story office tower with approximately 238,000 square 
feet of office space; about 20,000 square feet of ground-floor retail space; and 1,105 parking spaces.

The project would also feature a new half-acre public park fronting Christie Avenue. 

The nearby existing six-story, 87,410-square-foot office building occupied by Wells Fargo Bank and other commercial tenants would remain, but the adjacent one-story, 44,000-square-foot building now occupied by Allegro Ballroom and other commercial tenants would be demolished.

While the 54-story tower would be 638 feet and the shorter building 202 feet, they would be built in an area where the maximum building height is 75 feet. To earn "bonus points" allowing taller buildings, 
developer Omni Group of Los Angeles plans to make 108 of the residential units "affordable," and provide "community benefits" including public open space. 

City of Emeryville staff will ask Omni Group hold a community meeting to solicit public comments on the project, followed by review of the project by various city committees. An environmental document will also be prepared once the project description and site circulation are finalized.

Thursday night's planning commission begins at 6:30 p.m. in the City Council chamber at City Hall, 1333 Park Ave.