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Silophant
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Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby Silophant » February 16th, 2015, 9:58 pm

36 floors. No height in feet was given.
acs wrote:So did anyone mention the Duval proposal? or at least hint at the other bids?
Twincitizen brought up the TV studio from the Duval proposal, but otherwise no, except for Frey mentioning "four great proposals".

Archiapolis
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Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby Archiapolis » February 17th, 2015, 9:20 am

After talking with a person involved with one of the proposals, it is clear that this process was about the financial package and NOT about the design.

United Properties (Pohlad's) obviously have billions of dollars to throw around so they would be hard to beat in their own backyard.

Their "proposal" was nothing more than a framework, not a building, and certainly not anything of architectural merit. The real work is happening right now and we won't see an *actual* building for some time.

What is surprising to me is that United Properties is working with LHB instead of one of the higher profile multi-family firms in town (or nationally). I think LHB is a good firm that does good work. However, I don't associate LHB with "l*xury housing/hotels" and certainly not in this market. I really like the Greenleaf project on Lyndale (especially considering that there is an affordable component to it). I don't know all of LHB's portfolio but ESG and BKV tend to get most of the "l*xury" housing in this town - with the exception of the awful Humphrey's projects, Skyscape and Stanton's stuff. Variety is good and I'm all for other firms contributing to "city building."

I really hope that LHB can pull off a "tower" and that they can create a great building at this high-profile site. We can start critiquing the project as the actual architecture emerges. I know that many characters will be dedicated to the quality of the streetscape, hopefully the aspects of the building in the sky will be given some consideration in this forum and at the public meetings as well.

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MN Fats
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Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby MN Fats » February 17th, 2015, 9:31 am

So are you saying we can forget about all the renderings we've seen because the actual building will in reality be something very different?

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LakeCharles
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Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby LakeCharles » February 17th, 2015, 9:38 am

So the proposal period was essentially just a game of "Show Me The Money"? Why do they bother?

twincitizen
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Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby twincitizen » February 17th, 2015, 9:58 am

MN Fats wrote:So are you saying we can forget about all the renderings we've seen because the actual building will in reality be something very different?
Could be. They said the entire idea is based off the very first hand drawn sketch their architect did when they decided to participate in the RFP. They are still very early in the design process, figuring out what will work, what won't work, etc. It's possible that we'll see some fairly significant revisions/refinements to the design.

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Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby Archiapolis » February 17th, 2015, 1:01 pm

LakeCharles wrote:So the proposal period was essentially just a game of "Show Me The Money"? Why do they bother?
Why do they bother to publicize images? Good question...I wish I had an answer. Was there an indication in the RFP that there had to be some kind of "complete" quality to the architecture?

Nobody is going to do more work than they have to...

Put it this way, Duval's BUILDING seemed to wow everyone but his financials appeared to be a mess.

Duval got chucked straightaway so that should tell you everything that you need to know about what was valued in the process.

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FISHMANPET
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Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby FISHMANPET » February 17th, 2015, 1:10 pm

Yes, an RFP for a proposal to build a building required you could actually afford to build the building. Shocking I know.

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Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby acs » February 17th, 2015, 2:08 pm

http://www.startribune.com/blogs/292229511.html

Strib article on the meeting last night, mostly repeating the Q&A.

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LakeCharles
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Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby LakeCharles » February 17th, 2015, 3:11 pm

FISHMANPET wrote:Yes, an RFP for a proposal to build a building required you could actually afford to build the building. Shocking I know.
That is not a shock. I get that one needs enough money to build a building in order to get approval. As it obviously should be. But Archiapolis implied it was the ONLY thing they looked at. In which case, why bother with the rest of the window dressing? Just put out a letter that says "Who has or can get their hands on the most money and wants to build a building?"

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FISHMANPET
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Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby FISHMANPET » February 17th, 2015, 3:14 pm

But the corollary to that is "you can build* whatever you want, even if you can't afford it, if it impresses us enough!"

*for various values of build, that include building something less than proposed, not building anything, or starting construction and running out of money at some point.

My guess is the 3 other proposals were able to explain their financing, which is why those were the 3 that were really looked at.

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Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby TTT » February 17th, 2015, 3:42 pm

This probably sounds negative, but with a hand drawn sketch that won the proposal: get ready for no lighting scheme, no offset interestingly stacked towers, and it definitely won't be "iconic".

If a developer doesn't have their feet held to the fire they'll go as cheap as possible. While the Pohlad's have billions, they have billions for a reason... the same reason why there is no talent on their baseball team.

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Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby Didier » February 17th, 2015, 5:54 pm

Now that's pessimism.

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LakeCharles
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Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby LakeCharles » February 18th, 2015, 8:07 am

FISHMANPET wrote:But the corollary to that is "you can build* whatever you want, even if you can't afford it, if it impresses us enough!"

*for various values of build, that include building something less than proposed, not building anything, or starting construction and running out of money at some point.

My guess is the 3 other proposals were able to explain their financing, which is why those were the 3 that were really looked at.
Or, you know, they could do a middle ground between those two. "Money doesn't matter at all" is not the only alternative to "money is the the only thing that matters."

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Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby twincitizen » February 18th, 2015, 8:40 am

Well regardless, the Duval proposal wasn't real, and United Properties offered the city more money for the land than either Mortenson or Doran (or Duval). Also, United's proposal was the tallest. What exactly are we complaining about here?

Silophant
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Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby Silophant » February 18th, 2015, 8:47 am

I believe we're complaining about how the city is just pretending to care about getting something decent on this block, and is colluding with UP to actually build The Marshall 2.

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Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby EOst » February 18th, 2015, 10:01 am

Didier wrote:Now that's pessimism.

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Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby IllogicalJake » February 18th, 2015, 11:11 am

LakeCharles wrote:Just put out a letter that says "Who has or can get their hands on the most money and wants to build a building?"
But... that's exactly whan an RFP is, and that's never been hidden. Finances are always going to take first place. Always! This is business, as much as it means more than that to us. There's no successful business that does things for fun and recognition while ignoring profits, and that includes the city of Minneapolis.

So I get it, the Duval tower rocked and makes this feel really underwhelming. But face it, there was no way in an ounce of hell that the thing was getting built. We should be upset at Duval for circumventing the process and trying to keep themselves alive by catching us all up in social media hype. We should not, can not, be upset with the city for enforcing the requirements they made clear.

Even in my fantasy where the eighty story tower was approved, nobody's addressing the fact that even the city agrees that eighty stories is not feasible at this time in this market. We'd end up with either a significantly downsized tower or a hole in the ground for ten years.
i talk too much. web dev, downtown. admin @ tower.ly

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Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby stockman » February 18th, 2015, 12:49 pm

I don't understand how the streetcar is going to run under the building, then out onto hennepin and make a turn, all with signalization needed for cars, peds, bicycles (new cycle track on Wash). That seems like a mess. Plus isn't it taking up a bunch of space, and key retail space kitty korner Whole Foods? Plus the streetcar isn't event a realization is it? I hope they ditch that part of the proposal. Cool in concept, bad in reality.

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Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby mattaudio » February 18th, 2015, 1:13 pm

See, part of me wonders if that's the reason why United was the frontrunner all along... because they integrated the streetcar. I wonder how planned that was. But, while not completely 1:1, it echoes the diagonal cut-through option on the streetcar plans.

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Re: Nicollet Hotel Block

Postby GrowMPLS » February 18th, 2015, 4:17 pm

mattaudio wrote:See, part of me wonders if that's the reason why United was the frontrunner all along... because they integrated the streetcar. I wonder how planned that was. But, while not completely 1:1, it echoes the diagonal cut-through option on the streetcar plans.

The city stated all along that the site would need to accommodate the streetcar transition from Nicollet to Hennepin. I didn't see any plan from the other 3. I think the streetcar going under the corner of the building is very cool and would be a huge plus for the retail in the building. IMO


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