I'll try to address a few things but certainly welcome feedback as we're going to CoW for that very reason as well - we're trying to build this thing right...
Ingress and Egress: The site is awkwardly constrained with bus lanes on 2nd Ave, the new Orange Line BRT on 12th Street traveling NW in one lane and traffic/buses flowing SE in the other three lanes, and then N and S bound traffic and bikes lanes on 3rd Ave/Central. In addition to the parking ramp circulation, there also need to be service lanes for retail/commercial, shipping, move-in/move-out, etc. Furthermore, ride share and deliverables need to be able to pull off the street at certain locations without interfering with any of the buses/bikers/pedestrians and causing traffic, public transport, and pedestrian safety issues. We felt this was the best circulation route and way-finding taking into account all those issues as well as we reasonably could as well as the LOS that exists at each of these intersections. With that said, we're still studying some of the porte cochere's in the area (mainly to see how pedestrians interact with it), their peak usage, and how they function to understand how this works, along with your typical TDMP analysis (say what you will about traffic studies...).
Point-Tower construction: As someone alluded to, there is an efficiency in operations from a point tower due to enhanced spaces for revenue against non-revenue generating spaces and code certainly plays a role (not surprising that MN has fairly restrictive/extremely safe building code). However, there is also an (1) aesthetic efficiency in the form of streamline and minimalist design with units having a lot of glass and sunlight, and (2) construction efficiency in the ability to construct a tower in a fixed amount of time and concrete pours - this is mainly a construction budget concern. Additionally, building a hulking box is just that - but that's more subjective (not when it comes to shadow studies though...). The location of the tower is to preserve air space from adjacent buildings and maintain view corridors from inside the building, but also respecting the surrounding buildings' existing view corridors. We're also trying mindful of the position of this building as it relates to the skyline when coming in on 35.