OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Issues concerning Downtown as described by the Downtown Council. River to 31st Street, I-35 to Bruce R. Watkins.
aknowledgeableperson
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Re: OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Postby aknowledgeableperson » Sun Jul 02, 2017 1:24 am

flyingember wrote:
aknowledgeableperson wrote:FWIW, if the rendering is anything at all of what the project will be then that will definitely be a shame. Being close to the river why not create something like what one might find along an old riverfront. Old warehouse building space converted to restaurants and bars. Throw in a mix of service businesses the locals would need on the ground floor with residences above (can be more than two stories). Have a central street that runs through the development, not for cars but for people (although a vehicle like an ambulance can utilize when needed). Of course, to prevent an overbuilt of retail space throw in some what I would call New York style multi-family residences where one could walk up the stairs or walk down a half flight of stairs to living spaces.
Don't need to make it a destination spot but more like a small community.

First, build some warehouses. Then wait a few decades.

Then pick an arbitrary design to renovate them.


The point was to build buildings that looked liked old warehouse buildings. I believe that is still possible, isn't it? Instead of making it look brand new make it look like it is old and renovated.
True, I could have worded that differently.

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Re: OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Postby pash » Sun Jul 02, 2017 2:09 pm

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Last edited by pash on Thu Aug 10, 2017 3:14 am, edited 1 time in total.

earthling
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Re: OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Postby earthling » Sun Jul 02, 2017 2:54 pm

Good to hear that F&C may not be not doing the entire project. That should decrease chances of most of project being cookie cutter row of apt complexes.

I wasn't at all decrying a 'town center' square vibe that ideally would have a 4 corner each being unique buildings. It's 'better' (just an opinion) than the military base layout that is implied in the overall rendering, which so far indicates a long row of cookie cutter apts with a pedestrian stretch on one side. Am proposing various '4 corner town squares' instead. I just used the renderings that F&C already has built elsewhere with the notion that they can get economies of scale doing buildings from various projects elsewhere in country rather than potentially approx same apt complex design for entire project. If they don't do entire project, then maybe even better.

We don't know yet of course but I do intend to contact both F&C and Port Authority with the overall suggestion of 'town square with unique buildings at each corner' rather than 'long stretch of apt complexes that are potentially nearly same design for entire stretch'. The renderings we have so far show a military style base (rather than 4 corner town squares) and the other with two buildings next to each other that are same design (implying cookie cutter). Intend to sway them from either of those for remaining project. Maybe they wouldn't anyway, only way to find out is to speak up before 'baked in', which I intend to do.

If you are OK with it as-is, you can send them that message or say nothing. If you wait until renderings are 'baked in', might be too late. Better to sway the direction for rest of project now than later.

Thanks for the suggestions.

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Re: OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Postby NorthOak » Sun Jul 02, 2017 3:42 pm

Obviously KC must aim much lower than Toronto or even Portland's South Waterfront District.
But the heights and exteriors must be different so it doesn't look cookie cutter or lame.
This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, it's taken decades to get this land cleared and ready.
It has to be done right and done well. This would be best case scenario - how spectacular would this be.
I would take half these heights, especially if streetcar is going to happen.

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earthling
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Re: OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Postby earthling » Sun Jul 02, 2017 3:45 pm

^Nice example, though could use some work at street level pedestrian/bicycle/streetcar scale integration. Doesn't have to be all buildings that tall but good example that 'we can do much better'. We have an opportunity to create a new destination along the streetcar line and what's being shown so far is sub-par. Are we going to be content with sub-par and say nothing KC?

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Re: OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Postby pash » Sun Jul 02, 2017 4:49 pm

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Re: OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Postby earthling » Sun Jul 02, 2017 4:55 pm

^Good feedback. I do plan to suggest other ways to alter the military base and potentially cookie cutter feel considering the constraints you provided (or extend the development more towards river, allowing multiple river length streets). I suspect if no one says anything, they'll do this as cookie cutter as they can get away with. This doesn't have a neighborhood association to discuss with, it's an entirely new area so if I'm the only one who speaks up, so be it. KC blows a lot of opportunities when it comes to doing things in a well thought out pedestrian/urbanized context and developers are getting away with too much copy/paste/repeat monotony. We've been accepting it up to this point in the city because we badly need population increase, but downtown has just enough momentum to start pressuring developers to reduce the monotony and raise the bar.

Organic growth with varying developers per block helps prevent this so maybe that could be one good direction for this overall plan if not using same developer.

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Re: OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Postby earthling » Wed Jul 05, 2017 7:22 pm

I'm now engaged with a developer contact. Have not made any suggestions yet as I've been first attempting to confirm if the renderings are 'directionally correct'. The contact has confirmed that all buildings are planned to look generally like this, so yes cookie cutter apt complex across the board. The layout also is the current target (what I'm calling the 'military base' layout). The developer seemed to imply they will be developing the entire site but I'll confirm.

Thoughts from those who want better than this? Will be making some suggestions to target something better than copy/paste/repeat monotony for a new downtown district, like mixing in designs from some of their other projects in other cities to at least mix things up yet they still get economies of scale. Will address Port Authority too if anything can be done to improve the layout towards a more urbanized pedestrian scale context. No harm in checking, and understand it could be too late.

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Re: OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Postby KCMOJoe89 » Wed Jul 05, 2017 7:55 pm

"PortKC has been preparing the land in this area to position it to attract new development opportunities, which includes a proactive entitlement and zoning for these properties. This work establishes a development framework for multiple development partners to design and build their respective projects with an eye towards a common vision of a mixed-use, pedestrian-friendly district that compliments the adjacent Berkley Riverfront Park."

Summary from the Confluence website (with renderings). I'm not aware of any design template that PortKC is requiring from developers, so I would think it's a bit premature to freak out over a rendering that lacks any design detail. Unless you disagree with the design from F&C, which is pretty much the only locked in design at this point.

http://www.thinkconfluence.com/work/tra ... extension/

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Re: OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Postby earthling » Wed Jul 05, 2017 7:59 pm

The F&C person is telling me that all buildings will generally have the same facade materials with variations per the rendering above. Essentially cookie cutter. Hopefully just one block.

As far as premature.... if we wait until 'baked in', could be too late to suggest changes. When they put out any renderings, it's game for reaction and feedback.

Placeholder or not, this one below does look much more mixed up than what F&C has on their site, though it has parking lots in front of buildings. I'll send this to F&C as well as one above and ask about the differences.

The target of having "multiple development partners" could really help with breaking up the monotony that single developers tend to do. F&C implied they have the entire site, is that not the case? Am checking to confirm.

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Re: OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Postby pash » Wed Jul 05, 2017 10:07 pm

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Last edited by pash on Thu Aug 10, 2017 3:47 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Postby kboish » Wed Jul 05, 2017 10:11 pm

earthling wrote:The F&C person is telling me that all buildings will generally have the same facade materials with variations per the rendering above. Essentially cookie cutter. Hopefully just one block.

As far as premature.... if we wait until 'baked in', could be too late to suggest changes. When they put out any renderings, it's game for reaction and feedback.

Placeholder or not, this one below does look much more mixed up than what F&C has on their site, though it has parking lots in front of buildings. I'll send this to F&C as well as one above and ask about the differences.

The target of having "multiple development partners" could really help with breaking up the monotony that single developers tend to do. F&C implied they have the entire site, is that not the case? Am checking to confirm.

Image


You should direct your suggestions to the Port Authority. They are uniquely positioned to require more of their developers at this site.

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Re: OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Postby earthling » Wed Jul 05, 2017 10:17 pm

^Yeah, they are next. Was first getting feedback from F&C. F&C implied they have entire site, which maybe means they'd like to but no deal yet.

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Re: OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Postby earthling » Thu Jul 06, 2017 10:52 am

Just got another reply from F&C. F&C says their part is the 'middle section' of this rendering but will not look like this...

Image

But rather the middle section will be more like this below...
Image

They currently have agreement to develop the 'middle section' only according to this contact but may still be 'involved in the process' for the rest of site, which could mean they'd like to develop entire site if they could.

Will attempt to reach Port Authority next.

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Re: OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Postby atticus23 » Thu Jul 06, 2017 10:07 pm

Isn't being "involved in the process," collaboration...?

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Re: OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Postby flyingember » Wed Jul 12, 2017 8:21 am

atticus23 wrote:Isn't being "involved in the process," collaboration...?


Not always

Collaboration implies working together to meet everyone's needs or interests.

The city and a developer would collaborate to meet code
The developer and the board of the neighborhood association might collaborate
The developer may only get the opinion of random people from the neighborhood (via email, phone, public meeting) and do nothing based on this input.

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Re: OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Postby FangKC » Sat Jul 29, 2017 6:52 am

Progress on Union at Berkley Riverfront.

http://tinyurl.com/y85bdtbz

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Re: OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Postby Highlander » Sat Jul 29, 2017 3:34 pm

FangKC wrote:Progress on Union at Berkley Riverfront.

http://tinyurl.com/y85bdtbz


I am confused. Is this already under construction? If so, wow. I thought it was still a ways off into the future.

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Re: OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Postby earthling » Sat Jul 29, 2017 3:41 pm

I've sent this thread and a cover letter to several Port Authority contacts. Basically it's too late for change with what F&H is doing but I did encourage they switch developers and designs for remainder of project, keeping things mixed up as possible.

I suspect this will end up looking like a suburban lifestyle center with cookie cutter rows of apts. Have given up and moved on, no one seems to care anyway or are content with anything. Lost opportunity to make it a significant new urbane downtown district or even with a neighborhoody town centre.

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Re: OFFICIAL: Port Authority Riverfront Project

Postby kboish » Sat Jul 29, 2017 4:59 pm

Highlander wrote:
FangKC wrote:Progress on Union at Berkley Riverfront.

http://tinyurl.com/y85bdtbz


I am confused. Is this already under construction? If so, wow. I thought it was still a ways off into the future.


Yes, first phase of over 400 units and 12000 sqft of retail is under construction in the picture posted.

Additional phases call for a total of 1200 apt units, another 15k sqft of retail and office sites for 100-300k sqft (i'm guessing at that number). It sounds like they have an additional developer lined up for a second phase. What all it will entail has not been disclosed yet.


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