Page 4 of 7

Re: United Properties / Four Seasons "Gateway" Project (Nicollet Hotel Block)

Posted: April 6th, 2017, 2:39 pm
by seanrichardryan
yeH, NOTHING ever gets built in historic districts.

Re: United Properties / Four Seasons "Gateway" Project (Nicollet Hotel Block)

Posted: April 6th, 2017, 2:43 pm
by FISHMANPET
Thanks for that great strawman.

Re: United Properties / Four Seasons "Gateway" Project (Nicollet Hotel Block)

Posted: April 6th, 2017, 2:50 pm
by Nathan
And I also think that modern buildings, taller buildings compliment and create contrast better with the actually historic buildings. Allowing them to really be seen and identified. When everything is made to look historic, the new buildings often look false and the quality historic buildings get lost in the muck. Just me though.

Re: United Properties / Four Seasons "Gateway" Project (Nicollet Hotel Block)

Posted: April 6th, 2017, 2:55 pm
by MNdible
seanrichardryan wrote: yeH, NOTHING ever gets built in historic districts.
FISHMANPET wrote: this idea that the way to preserve history is to lock the built environment in amber
Sorry, I'm bad at logic. Which one of these is the great strawman?

Re: United Properties / Four Seasons "Gateway" Project (Nicollet Hotel Block)

Posted: April 6th, 2017, 2:57 pm
by FISHMANPET
The one that I didn't make, clearly.

When we've got historic guidelines that are limiting height and/or dictating material choices to match the historic character, then that's locking the built environment in amber. Sure you can build a new building, as long as it doesn't look like a new building. That doesn't mean anything new doesn't get built, it just means that the form of an area is frozen in amber, unable to change.

Re: United Properties / Four Seasons "Gateway" Project (Nicollet Hotel Block)

Posted: April 6th, 2017, 3:02 pm
by MNdible
So, you've never actually looked at the design guidelines, have you?
The intent of the Design Guidelines for New Buildings on Infill Sites section is to encourage compatible design that reinforces key character defining features of the district. Compatibility is the ability of different components, whether similar or dissimilar, to function together and stand together. New buildings shall not replicate existing buildings.  The following design guidelines establish a framework for making design decisions that will reinforce the key character defining elements of the district while allowing for creativity and flexibility in new designs.

Re: United Properties / Four Seasons "Gateway" Project (Nicollet Hotel Block)

Posted: April 6th, 2017, 3:08 pm
by FISHMANPET
Well obviously not all historic districts are identical. Some limit height. Some limit materials. Some do both. Some do neither.

Would it be easy now, like Nathan says, bolt a couple extra floors onto a historic building? Is preventing someone from doing that in keeping with the historic nature of the district, even though this was quite common on buildings that were built ~100 years ago?

Re: United Properties / Four Seasons "Gateway" Project (Nicollet Hotel Block)

Posted: April 6th, 2017, 3:38 pm
by amiller92
Nathan wrote:
April 6th, 2017, 2:50 pm
And I also think that modern buildings, taller buildings compliment and create contrast better with the actually historic buildings. Allowing them to really be seen and identified. When everything is made to look historic, the new buildings often look false and the quality historic buildings get lost in the muck. Just me though.
Me too. Never agreed with you more than your last two comments.

Re: United Properties / Four Seasons "Gateway" Project (Nicollet Hotel Block)

Posted: April 6th, 2017, 3:51 pm
by MNdible
Re: Adding on to existing buildings
It's definitely been done, although in these cases it's doubly important that the addition is clearly different.

I'm not going to litigate this out with everybody. I'm not going to say that this particular set of historic guidelines is perfect. The fact that there are currently two massive buildings moving through approvals whose style is decidedly faux-historic is troubling.

That the density on a few key blocks isn't getting absolutely maximized just isn't the end of the world, and it's a very modest trade-off considering all of the other opportunities. Were this a different block even within the warehouse district, I'd be much less concerned about it.

And again, this conversation should be moved to the West Elm thread.

Re: United Properties / Four Seasons "Gateway" Project (Nicollet Hotel Block)

Posted: April 6th, 2017, 4:02 pm
by 5th Ave Guy
I'm not sure how they were able to get away with the additional space added onto the Arctic Cat building, but that looks bad enough to convince me it's a bad idea in general.

Re: United Properties / Four Seasons "Gateway" Project (Nicollet Hotel Block)

Posted: April 7th, 2017, 11:29 am
by David Greene
amiller92 wrote:
April 5th, 2017, 3:08 pm
Protect all the contributing structures in a district, as long as it's defined coherently (i.e., not single family homes).
I'm curious about this. We have several "coherently" defined historic districts of single-family homes. You just don't think that's valid? Why not?
VAStationDude wrote:I strongly disagree gilded age mansions are worthy of protection. The social conditions that allowed them to exist shouldn't be forgotten but the mansions are a poor vehicle for communicating that part of our history.
I'm also curious about this. Have you ever taken a tour of the Hill or Ramsey houses? They do quiet a good job of conveying life of the servants and surrounding neighbors.

I do believe that in select cases it is worthwhile to preserve districts, meaning multiple buildings that together give a place a certain feeling. As MNdible says, there is no one-size-fits-all definition for this. Each has to be taken in its context.

Years ago I thought that new construction in such districts should look like the old. I've since done a 180 on that and think any new construction should absolutely state that it is new. Including additions to existing buildings.

Re: West Elm Hotel

Posted: April 7th, 2017, 11:50 am
by FISHMANPET
Protecting a gilded age mansion as a museum that can convey the full story of everyone that lived or worked in the house is good.

Protecting a gilded age mansion so rich white people can live it in privately is not good.

Re: United Properties / Four Seasons "Gateway" Project (Nicollet Hotel Block)

Posted: April 7th, 2017, 1:04 pm
by amiller92
David Greene wrote:
April 7th, 2017, 11:29 am
I'm curious about this. We have several "coherently" defined historic districts of single-family homes. You just don't think that's valid? Why not?
Which are you thinking of? I'll grant you that actually does describe Milwaukee Avenue, but that's small and unique enough to be fine. It's also not generically "single family homes."

The proposed Homewood district is actually intended to be based on the super-common single family home styles from the first half of the 20th century, which are literally everywhere across the city. That's not a coherent basis for a historic district.

Re: West Elm Hotel

Posted: April 7th, 2017, 1:10 pm
by David Greene
The Wedge Historic District has lots of unique houses in it. I suppose you could argue they are common "styles" but that's kind of the point of that historic district.

I haven't looked at exactly what the proposed Homewood district covers but I would definitely say there is a group of houses (mansions, if you prefer) there worth preserving as a unit. The first time I ever went there I was blown away by how unique it is.

Obviously other people disagree that it's not a "coherent basis for a historic district." Of course it's coherent. The district defines what it is protecting. You can of course disagree with the criteria used but you can't make a factual statement that it's objectively wrong. People think differently.

I have some sympathy for the argument that we shouldn't just arbitrarily designate mansions (or anything else) for preservation. But I see no reason why we should specifically exclude mansions or single family homes for that matter from consideration.

Re: West Elm Hotel

Posted: April 7th, 2017, 1:34 pm
by amiller92
David Greene wrote:
April 7th, 2017, 1:10 pm
The Wedge Historic District has lots of unique houses in it. I suppose you could argue they are common "styles" but that's kind of the point of that historic district.
One could debate whether that historic district should exist, but no, it is not made of homes that are indistinguishable from those found across the city. Many of them are also older.
I haven't looked at exactly what the proposed Homewood district covers
Well, might be worth doing ;)
but I would definitely say there is a group of houses (mansions, if you prefer) there worth preserving as a unit. The first time I ever went there I was blown away by how unique it is.
?? There are four mansions (well, former mansions, I think they've all been subdivided) on the ridge. I guess there's something unique about that, but is that enough for preservation?

Regardless, those are contributing structures, but the proposed district is actually grounded in the completely common homes.

The park is unique for Minneapolis.
You can of course disagree with the criteria used but you can't make a factual statement that it's objectively wrong.]
I can make the argument that it's factually wrong to protect a neighborhood because it's just like every other neighborhood from that period around the city. Especially when there are many such neighborhoods.

Re: West Elm Hotel

Posted: April 18th, 2017, 10:07 am
by twincitizen
Article: http://finance-commerce.com/2017/04/ber ... orth-loop/ (locked)

From the Environmental Cleanup grants report:
Azine Alley Redevelopment (102, 104, 110, 120 1st St N)
Projected DEED Request: $387,397
Projected Met Council TBRA Request: $267,435
Foundry Development intends to construct an eight-story hotel (75,714 square feet) and a
condominium building (92,048 square feet; 70 market rate units), with street-level retail (3512
square feet) and a restaurant (5000 square feet). The proposed redevelopment also includes a
three-story underground parking garage (90,480 square feet). The total projected development
cost is $67,000,000.
When I first saw this last week, I mistakenly took it as the Foundry Development (which is on the other side of 1st Street from this site). "Foundry" in this case is just the name the developer is using.

Re: West Elm Hotel & Condos - 102-120 1st Street N

Posted: April 18th, 2017, 11:17 am
by 5th Ave Guy
In this article they make it sound like this is different than the West Elm project. They're the same, right?

"Hoteliers have taken a big interest in the North Loop in the past year, with the Hewing Hotel opening and plans underway by West Elm and United Properties."

http://www.bizjournals.com/twincities/n ... serve.html

Re: West Elm Hotel & Condos - 102-120 1st Street N

Posted: April 18th, 2017, 11:48 am
by Nathan
There are currently two planned hotels in the area. The west elm hotel at this address and another near target field station by united properties.

Re: West Elm Hotel & Condos - 102-120 1st Street N

Posted: April 18th, 2017, 12:18 pm
by twincitizen
I assumed the reporter phrased it that way since the West Elm Hotel has not been "officially" announced/confirmed for this site yet. But yes it's pretty clear this is the same proposal.

Re: West Elm Hotel & Condos - 102-120 1st Street N

Posted: October 12th, 2017, 7:05 pm
by dajazz
Project is finally going to the North Loop Neighborhood Association next Wednesday:

https://2w5swnzapmf232d0u3vwgc1u-wpengi ... r-2017.pdf