Properties to be rebuilt

NEWPORT BEACH — Two aging commercial properties in Lido Village will soon be transformed into contemporary waterfront residential homes and commercial space, project officials said this week.

The first property on 3388 Via Lido, a 1960s-era building that began as Newport Balboa Savings Bank, will be stripped and rebuilt as two luxurious penthouse, single-family homes and multiple office spaces, with demolition beginning this month, said project architect Robin Donaldson.

"The original building was very contemporary for it's time," Donaldson said. "It had a very fun, cool design that sort of was destroyed over the years. Now, it's going to have a whole new life."

The upper three levels of the five-story building will be divided into two, roughly 5,000 square-foot penthouses, with the uppermost penthouse being the larger.

The bottom two levels will be transformed into about 10,000 square-feet of office space and expected to house up to three tenants, said development partner Matt Montgomery of Marshall Property & Development, who is overseeing the project for Bayfront Holdings L.P.

Residential garages will also be added onsite. Additionally, 110 feet of dock space connected to the property and an off-site parking lot located on 32nd Street will be renovated, he said.

While exact market estimates will not be available until early next year, Montgomery said that office space may be leased at about $4.50 per square foot while residential space does not yet have a price tag.

Project designs will make the most of opportunities presented by the 60-foot harbor adjacent building — a rarity on the Balboa Peninsula, said Montgomery.

Using a lot of natural materials, such as tropical woods and sandstone, color-treated glass in transparent shades of blues and greens, and fully-opening windows, the designs created by Donaldson will take full advantage of the harbor views by making the building appear as open as possible.

"You're going to be able to see through the building to the bay when you walk down the street," Donaldson explained. "As the building is now, you wouldn't have any idea that the bay existed. In a way, it's reestablishing the visual connection for the community."

The mixed-use project is one of the first in a soon-to-come wave of construction from multiple developers to rehabilitate an aging Lido Village.

Tim Collins, an independent consultant hired by the city to manage a collaboration among developers of Lido Marina Village, Via Lido Plaza, the new civic center site and other buildings in order to create a forward-minded vision for the area, said he was impressed so far with the designs for the penthouse and office space.

Marshall Properties has been cooperative in achieving the end objective, which is "to come up with an integrated plan that will allow all the property owners…to reposition their property for the future," Collins said.

"It involves a cooperative effort of neighbors and careful consideration of land-use opportunities," he added.

The second project, still in the conceptual stages, will be located at 3355 Via Lido. Plans are to turn an aging retail and office space into a 17-home townhouse project, Montgomery said.

The project will be three stories and the town homes will be between 2,000 and 2,400 square-feet, he said.

Plans will be submitted to the city in the first quarter of next year will an anticipated construction date of late 2011, Montgomery said.

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