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mnmike
Wells Fargo Center
Posts: 1120
Joined: June 2nd, 2012, 11:01 am

Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby mnmike » December 30th, 2014, 1:53 pm

Archiapolis wrote: Care to name a few current/modern buildings that are NOT arts/culture related that fit your criteria for "iconic?" Can you point to a building that is predominately housing/hotel that you consider "iconic" for the city in question?
Again, as I said in the post...I was more participating in the discussion of what is an "iconic" building in general, which was certainly going on...and not to the limitations of this particular site. What I said applies to the site as well though, because the portion at the base could just as well be "iconic" as the tower could be. Also why I said I was hoping the base would be some sort of greatly designed destination piece. Anyway, don't you worry, it was all speaking in general terms, and I already said "I like the tall (Duval) building" so you don't have to hate me and my opinions!

Also, where did I say an iconic building couldn't be tall? I never did, I agreed with another poster that tall was one of the possible critera for "iconic" actually....so your question doesn't even make sense. What I said was just part of the discussion on what CAN be iconic. Sheesh...

mullen
Foshay Tower
Posts: 986
Joined: June 4th, 2012, 7:02 am

Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby mullen » December 30th, 2014, 2:09 pm

i think most of us just want a really tall building in our downtown. to exceed the unwritten IDS height limit. that's all. skyscrapers can be aspirational features. drive into chicago on 94 and it's like entering the emerald city.

pretty much does it for me. hokey, silly.. the little kid who took the #5 bus downtown to be in this built enviroment wants it. build the office on spec for all i care. combine the mixed uses to get above 57 floors. just get over 57 for once.

mnmike
Wells Fargo Center
Posts: 1120
Joined: June 2nd, 2012, 11:01 am

Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby mnmike » December 30th, 2014, 2:14 pm

Just for fun...here is an example of a new, not that tall hotel in Chicago that comes to mind though. The Godfrey in Chicago...Apparently the first to use the "staggered truss" method in Chicago making it somewhat iconic. Pretty cool hotel, that has won quite a bit of acclaim in Chicago...also has the biggest retractable roof patio there.

http://www.archdaily.com/530219/godfrey ... ssociates/

http://voices.suntimes.com/arts-enterta ... oor-patio/

That's just an example of a hotel use being done very creatively...something like that, paired with some residential on top and some sort of cultural amenity/destination (like my pie in the sky state of the art planetarium idea) could be pretty amazing and not all that tall. Just saying iconic sure can be done in modern design within the requirements, yes (in response to Arch). But again, I do agree of the choices we have been shown that Duval is the closest to iconic. My other comments are all rhetorical/general about the discussion on new iconic buildings and random ideas on what could be, and not specific to the proposals at hand really...apologies for being off topic slightly.


Back to the title of the topic, whichever developer is selected, I hope they come up with a creative use for the base...that is what is really needed to activate the space. So far Duval seems to have the most creative idea, with the studio space...but then the space in front of WCCO is a fairly dead zone on the south end of the mall, so not sure how well that would work (esp if it is only part time studio). Need something great on the street level here! Like Xandrex says...I hope they can come up with something great and complelling to the city to make it a great use for the site and iconic even beyond it's height status.

Didier
Capella Tower
Posts: 2449
Joined: June 3rd, 2012, 10:11 am
Location: MSP

Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby Didier » December 30th, 2014, 8:24 pm

You have a good point, but there are examples. Off the top of my head, the corn-like buildings in Chicago are probably No. 3 on the iconic list in that city, above taller buildings. In Minneapolis, the Foshay is as iconic to the average person as any other building.

Didier
Capella Tower
Posts: 2449
Joined: June 3rd, 2012, 10:11 am
Location: MSP

Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby Didier » December 30th, 2014, 8:26 pm

Oops. Posted from my phone and didn't realize there was another page of posts.

Wedgeguy
Capella Tower
Posts: 3778
Joined: June 1st, 2012, 6:59 am

Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby Wedgeguy » December 30th, 2014, 10:56 pm

Didier wrote:You have a good point, but there are examples. Off the top of my head, the corn-like buildings in Chicago are probably No. 3 on the iconic list in that city, above taller buildings. In Minneapolis, the Foshay is as iconic to the average person as any other building.
The Marina City Towers have been icons for nearly 50 years. They became icons because of the way they were constructed, where they were constructed, on the Chicago River, and the shape of the towers. At the time they were built they were a very unique residential tower. They still are a very unique set of towers, but they can't hold a candle to Aqua as far as super unique residential icons now. They were icons before the John Hancock, the Willis Tower and Aqua. Once an icon, always an Icon. It may move down the list in impressive importance, but they remain an icon. Much like the Flatiron Building in NYC. While it is not the tallest. It became an icons almost a century ago due to the shape of the tower that had to fit on a unique piece of land and still remains one today. Just as the Foshey and IDS will remain icons even if the Duval tower dwarfs them. There is usually a history that helps create an icon, The architect, the architecture itself, the purpose of the building.

The Foshey has been an Icon in this city since the 30's. It too is a unique building that stands out even amid a group of towers that surround it. All but the Duval project would pretty much get lost in the skyline and behind buildings from many parts of the city. The secret to this project is that the uniqueness of the tower have to be match with the uniqueness of the lower floors and street level. I'd like a better understanding of the Atrium that they have planned. I hope that it is unique and classy enough to become as much of a destination as the tower that brings the people to use it.
Last edited by Wedgeguy on December 31st, 2014, 2:21 pm, edited 2 times in total.

LakeCharles
Foshay Tower
Posts: 848
Joined: January 16th, 2014, 8:34 am
Location: Kingfield

Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby LakeCharles » December 31st, 2014, 8:10 am

Didier wrote:In Minneapolis, the Foshay is as iconic to the average person as any other building.
The Foshay's iconic status is at least partially due to it being the "first skyscraper west of the Mississippi" and the tallest building in the upper Midwest for 40+ years. So height still had something to do with that.

Archiapolis
Foshay Tower
Posts: 818
Joined: November 2nd, 2012, 8:59 am

Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby Archiapolis » December 31st, 2014, 1:07 pm

mnmike wrote:Just for fun...here is an example of a new, not that tall hotel in Chicago that comes to mind though. The Godfrey in Chicago...Apparently the first to use the "staggered truss" method in Chicago making it somewhat iconic. Pretty cool hotel, that has won quite a bit of acclaim in Chicago...also has the biggest retractable roof patio there.

http://www.archdaily.com/530219/godfrey ... ssociates/

http://voices.suntimes.com/arts-enterta ... oor-patio/

That's just an example of a hotel use being done very creatively...something like that, paired with some residential on top and some sort of cultural amenity/destination (like my pie in the sky state of the art planetarium idea) could be pretty amazing and not all that tall. Just saying iconic sure can be done in modern design within the requirements, yes (in response to Arch). But again, I do agree of the choices we have been shown that Duval is the closest to iconic. My other comments are all rhetorical/general about the discussion on new iconic buildings and random ideas on what could be, and not specific to the proposals at hand really...apologies for being off topic slightly.


Back to the title of the topic, whichever developer is selected, I hope they come up with a creative use for the base...that is what is really needed to activate the space. So far Duval seems to have the most creative idea, with the studio space...but then the space in front of WCCO is a fairly dead zone on the south end of the mall, so not sure how well that would work (esp if it is only part time studio). Need something great on the street level here! Like Xandrex says...I hope they can come up with something great and complelling to the city to make it a great use for the site and iconic even beyond it's height status.
Thanks for the reply. Maybe by putting "iconic" in quotations I came across as caustic but that wasn't my intention. I was asking for examples and I like the one that you put forward.

I was trying to highlight the fact that the statement that "height ≠ iconic" might be true in the purest sense but height is perhaps the "easiest" way to get to an iconic status in architecture. I was challenging the notion that there are "lots of iconic buildings that aren't tall." Again, in the truest sense this may be correct but when you drill down, it seems that there are few "iconic" multi-family residential buildings that aren't (or weren't at the time) tall. I will grant, there are plenty of great buildings out there, even iconic ones that aren't tall, just very few in this in project type.

I'm all for iconic at this site and if there is a proposal out there that can put forward a progressive idea about multi-family residential/hotel architecture and be iconic WITHOUT height, I'd be excited to see it. However, given the proposals that actually exist, the Duval proposal is the best one on the board.

Proportion is a foundational element to "good" architecture and "taller" is generally a pleasant aesthetic. With all of this said, active, vibrant ground floor uses are key to the success of whatever happens here as many others have pointed out.

Thanks for engaging.

John
Capella Tower
Posts: 2250
Joined: May 31st, 2012, 2:06 pm

Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby John » December 31st, 2014, 2:36 pm

Archiapolis wrote:I'm all for iconic at this site and if there is a proposal out there that can put forward a progressive idea about multi-family residential/hotel architecture and be iconic WITHOUT height, I'd be excited to see it. However, given the proposals that actually exist, the Duval proposal is the best one on the board.

Proportion is a foundational element to "good" architecture and "taller" is generally a pleasant aesthetic. With all of this said, active, vibrant ground floor uses are key to the success of whatever happens here as many others have pointed out.

Thanks for engaging.
Thanks for the excellent comments. I wish the three proposals (other than Duval's) would have worked harder to visualize something great and unique that celebrates the north entrance of the mall. This is not the place for them to stay in their comfort or "safe" zone and propose a backdrop infill project. And it wouldn't have to be tall. It's really not height that's the issue. It's the developers' lack of creativity or vision to adequately respond to what the city requested for this site.

min-chi-cbus
Capella Tower
Posts: 3128
Joined: June 1st, 2012, 9:19 am

Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby min-chi-cbus » January 1st, 2015, 8:29 am

There's a building somewhere in Europe that's no larger than 10 floors but is pretty iconic due to the amazing architecture that makes the building's floors "wavelike". If I can find the link I'll include it as soon as possible.

Here are some examples, and I think the 2nd to last one is what I was looking for, but may not be residential:
http://weburbanist.com/2010/04/19/15-bi ... the-world/

uptowncarag

Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby uptowncarag » January 1st, 2015, 11:28 am

I thought the post office was to be turned into a wave like residential building but the proposal was cancelled?

Wedgeguy
Capella Tower
Posts: 3778
Joined: June 1st, 2012, 6:59 am

Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby Wedgeguy » January 1st, 2015, 8:56 pm

The Gehry building is not very tall, but it is designed by a starchitect that is known for designing buildings outside the box. If any of the lower 3 towers had been equally outside the box as the Gehry Tower of Prague we would not be having the discussions that we have now. Iconic does not have to be tall. But iconic has to have the cache to get people to come and experience it. Height is one of the metrics that gets peoples attention. Outside of the box like Gehry is another metric that will get people to want to see it. When I have people in town I'll show them the Weisman Museum and they are blown away that we have such a cool building in our city.

I'm afraid that safety and economical is never seen as ICONIC! These lesser 3 buildings were design as safe investments. They were maybe designed as an Icon if you think that the City Center is an icon. Only the Duval has any metric for Iconic design. I just hope they have at street level, the unforgettable metric also. Right now that is hazy in my mind. They have an interesting concept, but how they get it to work is another matter.

AccordGuy
Metrodome
Posts: 60
Joined: October 5th, 2013, 2:54 pm
Location: Minneapolis

Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby AccordGuy » January 3rd, 2015, 12:04 pm

Is it just me, or is the Star Tribune printing more letters that are critical of the Duval proposal. Seems to me that there are still quite a few people out there who are opposed to anything taller than our current tallest. I really do hope that the Duval proposal is chosen for this site, even though it will be significantly taller than the buildings around it.
Born in Minneapolis.

uptowncarag

Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby uptowncarag » January 3rd, 2015, 12:32 pm

These are the same people who are afraid to go downtown. There is nothing wrong with a shorter building here but none of the other 3 proposals can make a claim for being "iconic". They should be embarrassed. If not here I do hope we get a supertall somewhere downtown. If one of these other 3 proposals is chosen as is we are looking at Block E part 2.

Wedgeguy
Capella Tower
Posts: 3778
Joined: June 1st, 2012, 6:59 am

Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby Wedgeguy » January 3rd, 2015, 4:24 pm

uptowncarag wrote:These are the same people who are afraid to go downtown. There is nothing wrong with a shorter building here but none of the other 3 proposals can make a claim for being "iconic". They should be embarrassed. If not here I do hope we get a supertall somewhere downtown. If one of these other 3 proposals is chosen as is we are looking at Block E part 2.
Thanks you for writing what I've been thinking and trying to express without coming out and saying that. While Block E had lots of door to the street. They created a bumbled mess with what they were trying to promote. Both the Game Works and the Book Store in a different economic environment would have made a lot of sense. But due to the economics vs both companies business models, the business models were for another economic period. Game Works came before the influx of residential and before Target Field became a strong draw to the area. The book store, like Barnes and Noble, was a victim of a change in the business model, with more books now being bought on line. E Block, even with all of the exterior doors, relied too much on having to navigate inside to enter the establishment that you wanted to go into. E block had terrible flow. This is where the Duval's atrium really scares me, will it be another space where you get lost finding where you want to go. Lack of good signage and sight lines, to let people know what is in the retail portion. If you try and make it a neighborhood mall it will fail. Try to make it too Michigan Avenue and it will be Gaviidee's problems revisited. It needs to be unique, but not too trendy. It needs to have things that people in the neighborhood want, not just tourist if it is going to take off. It needs to be a Crystal Court II. I say that as to mean that there will be people there at all times of the day using the various parts of the building and keeping stores engaged with customers more than just a few select hours a day.

PS: This would be an excellent spot for a new Apple store. Apple is a store that creates foot traffic 12 hours a day. It would bring workers north from the core and residence from the NL, the Mill District, and those on the LRT would have to walk maybe 2-3 blocks. Just an observation on what I think is needed to draw people 15 hours or more a day. Feel free to suggest other destination stores that would fit into this foot print.

The biggest challenge for the north end of the mall is to be visible to more than just the North Loop residence. Due to past mistakes and the area remaining undeveloped now for better than 30 years, the area is considered a dead zone. For 30 years the area has been a sea of asphalt. Now you need something that will stand out and up screaming, "Come check this out". Visibility and access will be challenges faced by all 4 developers. Due to the short sightedness of other developers and the city we have large gaps in the retail fabric of Nicollet and the rest of downtown. You will have to have something there that people want, but also is not something that you can go to Rosedale or Ridgedale for. Due to the mistakes and missteps of the past, this plot of land now has to become it's own catalyst to create a new energy that will bring people to this end of the mall and hope that the fools will work to fix the mistakes that they have created on Nicollet which gave us dead zones. Unfortunately the same dead zone issues are on Hennepin also. This is why the city has to make sure the new hotel next to the Lumber Exchange needs to have life and not cement board to keep interest in proceeding north on Hennepin. I hope the city works equally as hard on upgrading the Hennepin Avenue experience also.

If the city, Opus, and Duval could work to create a strong north Mall 2 blocks synergy. If so, then I think together they can help to create and expand that retail energy that will filter all the way down the mall. Especially with the mall rebuilding. If we can only get the mall portion of City Center fixed, then we would have a real retail environment. We need to have life on the mall from 15th to Washington and then to the river.

Minneboy
US Bank Plaza
Posts: 667
Joined: January 15th, 2013, 1:18 pm

Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby Minneboy » January 3rd, 2015, 8:22 pm

Not sure if anyone has mentioned it but I hope the hotel component of Duvals proposal will be a Radisson Red. I'd like to see the bottom portion if that is the hotel portion to have a lot of color, including red.

m b p
Nicollet Mall
Posts: 198
Joined: September 3rd, 2012, 5:46 pm

Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby m b p » January 4th, 2015, 12:39 am

Here's a preliminary model I'm working on for the United Properties concept:

Nicollet Hotel Block - United Properties

I count 35 or 36 floors in the smaller portion of the tower... 39 or 40 floors in the taller portion. Estimated 430 feet.

Image
Image
Image
Image

uptowncarag

Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby uptowncarag » January 4th, 2015, 8:30 am

Thanks for all of these models. They are fantastic. I love all of the different views and how the skyline would look. I just hope the city does not accept this as iconic. Is this iconic? If so, it will fit in with 33 South Sixth otherwise known as the iconic Multifoods Tower.

BigIdeasGuy
Landmark Center
Posts: 295
Joined: March 27th, 2013, 8:22 am

Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby BigIdeasGuy » January 4th, 2015, 8:12 pm

Iconic is a really high bat for anything to meet including a building. In my opinion for something to be iconic it has to be something that is burned into people brain that they will never forget. There aren't that many iconic buildings in the world. The Freedom Tower is iconic, the Statue of Liberty is iconic, Burj Khalifa is iconic, the Shanghai Tower is iconic, the Eiffel Tower is iconic, Big Ben is iconic. There are a few more but not many. There was never going to be an iconic building on this block. Hell I would argue that the Twin Cities don't have an iconic building, that's not a shot at DT MPLS or StP that's simply a result of having such a high bar to clear.

I think the city set the bar too high and instead of using iconic they should have used signature. The IDS is a signature building as is Wells Fargo and Capella. I would argue the Guthrie is also signature building. The Duval proposal is a signature, yes partly because of it's height. The Mortenson proposal isn't nor is the Doran. The UP proposal solid but I don't know if it's a signature building. That's why I think the Duval proposal is the one the city should choose.

Minneboy
US Bank Plaza
Posts: 667
Joined: January 15th, 2013, 1:18 pm

Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby Minneboy » January 4th, 2015, 9:04 pm

Yes they are signature buildings as is the Foshay. Also any building in just about any city is iconic simply being the tallest. It has a reputation.


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