Getting in the ground for the Museum Towers II project took quite some time, so it's a little jarring to see that construction is moving along so rapidly. It was back in 2012 that we first told you about plans to replace a surface parking lot between 18th & 19th, Buttonwood Street & Mattias Baldwin Park with a residential tower and some homes, but it was two years before the project even went before Civic Design Review. Finally, last summer, we discovered that developers Forest City had started construction, with a pile of fresh dirt announcing that the project was underway.

Passing by last week, we discovered so much progress.

View on 18th Street

Base of the building

Looking up at the building

Looking east from 19th Street

Looking south on 19th Street

To refresh your memory, this project includes a sixteen-story building with 270 apartment units, a parking garage with spots for 439 cars, and sixteen townhomes on the western and southern sides of the project. Those townhomes ostensibly function to block views of the parking garage, but they don't seem to be particularly effective in that role at the moment. Perhaps the homes will do a better job once they're finished, but according to the renderings they look like they'll only rise two stories, which is really odd for new construction residential.

Rendering on 18th Street

19th Street rendering

Oddly short town homes notwithstanding, this project is a great addition to this area, with architecture that puts the surrounding buildings to shame. Take this project and add in the context of nearby projects like the Granary which opened a couple years ago and the Dalian on the Park finishing later this year, and you see that this neighborhood is in the middle of a population boom. Good thing a new and much larger Whole Foods is coming soon, the current location just wouldn't be able to handle all the new customers.