A large chunk of RKm Development’s most important work on the Hyas Point waterfront development project in 2022 didn’t show up in the company’s most recent presentation to Port of Camas-Washougal leaders.
That was partially by design.
“This (presentation) will be a lot of pretty pictures, but the behind-the-scenes stuff is really what’s been taking a lot of the time this year — unit layout, common areas, stairwells, electrical rooms, trash rooms, service entrances, those kinds of things,” Channa Kim, RKm’s special projects manager, said during a port commission meeting on Dec. 6. “It’s kind of tucked away.”
Those “pretty pictures” provided port leaders with the most complete and detailed look yet at the Portland-based development company’s vision of the project, which the port envisions as “a lively, walkable place with community gathering and character spaces, commercial, retail, mixed-use and residential uses,” with a design that will “honor the natural beauty and history of the site and the community, and support the creation of a local and regional identity for the cities of Washougal and Camas.”
“Hopefully it’s looking more realistic and lifelike,” Kim said.
Port Chief Executive Officer David Ripp told the Post-Record that RKm is scheduled to break ground on the first phase of construction in the summer or early fall of 2023.
“We just finished our design documents, kind of that last step before we go into construction documents, and we’re starting to look at pricing plans and financial packages,” Kim said during the meeting. “Our current timeline is still going out to bid next year in the first or second quarter, and then going from there. It’s been a real team effort, but we’re really excited that this is getting some traction and moving forward.”
The first phase of the project will feature several streets, including a main thoroughfare stretching east to west, along the Columbia River, and four buildings that will house 276 apartment units and 56,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space.
“The four buildings have their own distinct characteristics,” Channa Kim said. “The first building is village-lodge inspired, with sloped roofs and structures. The second building is inspired by the trees and forests around here. This third building is inspired by the basalt formations in the Gorge — it’s got this cool ‘in-and-out’ feature on the exterior facade to mimic the formations. The last building is inspired by the (region’s) glacial history, so we came up with a white exterior facade.
“We’re looking at more ways to incorporate those things into the design so it feels kind of unique, but also homey.”
RKm Development owner Roy Kim said that the company is trying to incorporate office space into the buildings to provide as much variety as possible.
Roy Kim also stated that the company is receiving “some interest” in its restaurant pads, which will be around 4,000 square feet in size.
“We’re looking at smaller restaurants as opposed to the ones that are at the Vancouver waterfront that might be 12,000 or 15,000 square feet,” he said.
“We think we can be a prime (location) for restaurants, but we’re also hoping to get a good mix of restaurants and restaurants that really create that active (vibe),” Channa Kim added. “It’s really important for that front street to be really active.”
RKm also hopes to incorporate a splash pad and small amphitheater into the development, according to Channa.