Lit up buildings

KCDevin

Lit up buildings

Postby KCDevin » Thu Nov 20, 2003 9:54 pm

What would downtown look like if these buildings were lit up?
Fidelity National Bank
Oak Tower
Power & Light Building (fully on every setback like it used to be)
President Hotel sign
City Center Square (maybe another color to make it look better at night)
Bryant Building
any others you can think of.

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Lit up buildings

Postby GRID » Thu Nov 20, 2003 11:46 pm

I agree Devin. KC really needs to show off it's skyline at night.

Although we are coming along with the Western Auto Building, Abdian Building (Firestone might even come back), and next year 909 Walnut will shine again along with the Broadway Bridge.

Town Pavilion's funky roof was supposed to be all lit up, but they never installed it. City hall never turns on it's lights anymore and buildings like Oak Tower and Bryant are dark as can be.

You seem good at emails, why not ask the property owners themselves?

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Creating Visual Excitement

Postby FangKC » Fri Nov 21, 2003 6:59 am

I agree that more downtown buildings should be lit up at night. The Mark
Twain Building (which used to be the Continental Hotel) used to have a
large lit sign on top--as did the Boley Building. I'd like to see the
Stuart Hall Building's sign lit at night too. The 1201 Walnut Tower
needs to have some type of lighting or light effect. Town Pavilion
should further highlight the roof details. Oak Tower should be
lit as well. Traders on Grand should place neon vertically up the sides
of the building.

It appears that the two towers on top of the former Fidelity Building
will be dramatically lit. The sides should also be distinguished with
lights. City Center Square certainly could be spruced up with some neon
running vertically down the corners, and the same goes for the AMC Tower
and the Doubletree Hotel. Commerce Bank could add to its lit sign on top
by adding neon on the corners. The AT&T Longlines Building has all that
wall space on the sides that could have large electronic billboards
flashing all night.

City Hall certainly could be lit more dramatically. Just think how
dramatic the Plaza is during the Christmas holiday and the effect of
doing the same downtown--but year-round. All those lights adds the
illusion of excitement and makes the skyline sparkle. The Kansas City
Star Building would look better at night if it was lit up like buildings
on the Plaza.

I know there are some that think the sky stations on the top of Bartle
Hall are strange; however, they do look cool at night and draw attention
to the skyline from the freeways and surrounding neighborhoods. The City
should do some other type of dramatically lit art project on the north
side of Bartle Hall as well.

I also like when trees are lit at night year-round. It adds some flair
to the sidewalks. I love those old French-style streetlamps that line
the island along 47th Street in the Plaza. They are really cool and
something similar could be done along Grand Avenue from Downtown to
Crown Center.

I've also always thought that Grand Avenue needs to have a
landscaped island down the center of the street with statues and
sculpture. It needs to be more like a Avenue des Champs Elysees. Create
a toney and glamorous streetscape like that and companies and developers
will clamour to build office and apartment towers along such a street. Ten or 15 cows from Cow Parade could have been donated back to the City and placed on lit stone pedestals at various points along the island separating Grand Avenue. It would also have been interesting if a small herd of them had been placed on that grassy median on the mall south of the Liberty Memorial.

A big dramatic fountain sculpture and pool (lit at night) with cowboys
and cattle springing forth from a center block like the one near the
Spanish steps in Rome (the Trevi Fountain--although that one has men
on horses and writhing people being trampled. LOL) would be perfect for
that little triangle of land between Main and Walnut streets at 20th (across
from Hereford House).

Another great fountain sculpture could be constructed across from Union
Station on the hill next to Pershing Road. There is a lot of open grassy
space there that could have more "umpff." That grand lawn could then be
landscaped more dramatically -- like a large English or Japanese Garden.
It could have large topiary that are lit at night as well.

Since the railroads were so important to Kansas City's development, I
think it would be cool to place an old-fashioned steam locomotive up on
a stone pedestal and have it dramatically lit at night. It would be cool
if steam poured regularly from the smokestack as well (sort of like the
Liberty Memorial has that lighted steam effect).

Another big fountain sculpture could be placed in
Washington Square Park so that it could be lit at night and seen from
Grand Avenue. Perhaps a big sculpture of several buffalo running with
Indians hunting them. Some of those big gold-plated statues would be nice as well -- like
those one sees in New York near the Plaza Hotel and Columbus Circle--and
all over Paris.

Brooklyn, NY, also has the Grand Army Plaza in Prospect Park which is a
great arch structure with statues. Kansas City has the Liberty Memorial
for WWI, but it doesn't really have a big memorial for WWII. A nice big
arch structure dramatically lit and with wonderful statues placed
somewhere would add a lot to public art in the City. A good location
would be that triangle of land south of Crown Center where Grand and
Main merge. It could also be opposite the Liberty Memorial at the other
end of the mall across from St. Mary's Hospital. Ilus Davis Park (across
from the Federal Courthouse) would also be a good location.
It would be great if 10th Street passed under the arch as well.

While I'm dreaming, I've always thought that it was too bad that the
Old Post Office on Pershing Road wasn't built where St. Mary's Hospital
is, or along the mall south of the Liberty Memorial. The architecture
of that structure is so interesting that it would have fit into that
area well. The Scottish Rite Temple on Linwood would have been a great
addition along the mall. In a perfect world, I would have liked to have
had the Nelson-Atkins Art Museum, the Kansas City Art Institute, and Kemper
Museum of Modern Art built where the old Trinity Lutheran Hospital is now.
Landscape Architect George Kessler, who designed the parks and boulevards
system, intended for the area south of the Liberty Memorial to be a
grand mall of great buildings and a showcase of architecture.

It's also too bad that William Volker didn't buy and donate land for
University of Kansas City (later UMKC) on Hospital Hill, somewhere
in the Crossroads area, or on the Westside along Summit. Then, the
Catholics could have built Rockhurst University near Cathedral of the
Immaculate Conception and Quality Hill. Having those two campuses so
near Downtown would have helped maintain some activity.
Last edited by FangKC on Fri Nov 21, 2003 10:35 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Lit up buildings

Postby tat2kc » Fri Nov 21, 2003 8:06 am

Glad to see you have some small ideas, Fang!! :wink: I'd also love to see some more dramatic lighting downtown. Not just lighting for lightings sake, but something unusual, perhaps more dramatic neon, or lighting that shows off some of the great designs on the buildings. The downtown loop, sitting on the bluff, could almost be an "island of light" as you approach from different angles. It truly could be beautiful.
Are you sure we're talking about the same God here, because yours sounds kind of like a dick.

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Lit up buildings

Postby zonk » Fri Nov 21, 2003 10:06 am

Devin, finally...nice thread. Great Idea!!! I too agree that further lighting of the skyline would be a dramatic imoprovement. I've recently noticed how spectacular the downtown looks at night, espcially with the recent addition of the Western Auto Sign Rehab. I like Fang's idea with the AT & T Longlines building. The southern facade would be a greeat location for some type of projected advertisement/entertainment feature. Would remind me of something from the BLADERUNNER....

ON a slightly different track...I think several years ago BNIM & AURI did a Main Street Corridor streetscape Plan which incorporated a laser light feature which ran along the corridor. The Plan basically ran from Linwood to 47th Street. it was an ambitous idea, especially for that corridor, but maybe we could incorporate in a different location?

Also I think the KU Design Studio did a similar concept in the West Bottoms.

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Lit up buildings

Postby Good2Great » Fri Nov 21, 2003 10:08 am

What would it look like if those building were lit up?


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Lit up buildings

Postby FangKC » Fri Nov 21, 2003 10:58 am

I like Fang's idea with the AT & T Longlines building. The southern facade would be a greeat location for some type of projected advertisement/entertainment feature. Would remind me of something from the BLADERUNNER....


I like that comparison to the electronic screen in Blade Runner. =D>

The west facade must have one as well--since it will face the proposed entertainment district.

KCDevin

Lit up buildings

Postby KCDevin » Fri Nov 21, 2003 5:50 pm

but money for any local company is a good thing :)
I probably won't email em, I email alot of people and am ignored very often.

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Lit up buildings

Postby GuyInLenexa » Fri Nov 21, 2003 6:32 pm

On a business trip to KC, before I moved here. I was here when The Chiefs were playing Monday Night Football.
I think it was Channel 9, they were reminding the businesses to keep thier lights on so the skyline would be lit up for the national broadcast.
They never had to do that back home in Dallas.
I do think we need more lights. When many of the older buildings are occupied with apartments and condos, that would help.
Some of our taller buildings are so stately illuminating them would show off the detail in the brickwork well.
I am surprised that One KC Place did not have vertical lights on it when it was built.
Maybe the next one will.

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Lit up buildings

Postby QueSi2Opie » Sat Nov 22, 2003 8:32 am

KCDevin wrote:but money for any local company is a good thing :)
I probably won't email em, I email alot of people and am ignored very often.


I think Fang should email somebody...he jus' proposed some terrific ideas! Send it to Cauthen...he's lookin' for some new staffers. Anybody that can write as much as him can certainly send an email to a few people.
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