Motiv Apartments - 2320 Colfax Avenue S

Calhoun-Isles, Cedar-Riverside, Longfellow, Nokomis, Phillips, Powderhorn, and Southwest
noodles
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Re: 2316-2320 Colfax Apartments

Postby noodles » April 25th, 2014, 11:25 am

anders wrote: Heckling? As in heckling in the Council chambers? Or do you mean the general mostly-online bullying tactics? Just curious if there was any kerfuffle today, or if people could behave like adults.
heckling was the wrong word. More or less the bully tactics I think, hey kept it broad and didn't name names of specifics. My guess being the "Bendrification" post and other similar things.
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Re: 2316-2320 Colfax Apartments

Postby FISHMANPET » April 25th, 2014, 11:27 am

Here's the meeting on Youtube:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PcuNv-NK8mQ
(maybe, I'm having troubles getting it to load)

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Re: 2316-2320 Colfax Apartments

Postby mattaudio » April 25th, 2014, 11:29 am

Meanwhile on the north side, the classic brick sidewalk-facing buildings at 4th and Broadway (just west of 94) are threatened with demo so that dairy can have a bigger parking lot for semis. But it's not a Healy House.

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Re: 2316-2320 Colfax Apartments

Postby David Greene » April 25th, 2014, 11:31 am

twincitizen wrote:He made no references to northside teardowns or his constituents. He seemed pretty hung up on the argument that since an offer had been made (by Nicole Curtis or others), he saw that as meeting the definition of a "reasonable alternative" to demolition, even if not a formal purchase agreement.
Ah, that makes sense. One of the more well-known rehabbers from North was trying to get the house moved and was lobbying Yang on just this point. I can't really fault CM Yang for the vote - he's responding to constituents. I did let him know what my opinion was (to his credit, he asked me during an unrelated meeting) but of course I'm not a constituent.

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Re: 2316-2320 Colfax Apartments

Postby David Greene » April 25th, 2014, 11:35 am

FISHMANPET wrote:I get that people want to save buildings, but I feel like we're doing historic preservation a disservice by calling this building historic. It's old, and that has value, but it's not historic.
To be fair, the people opposing demolition consider it historic because it was designed and built by Healy, apparently during a transitional period of his career. In general that's a legitimate reason to consider a building historic but of course it's not the only factor. There's an entire Healy historic block, for example. To my knowledge they've never claimed the owner was significant.

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Re: 2316-2320 Colfax Apartments

Postby noodles » April 25th, 2014, 11:42 am

FISHMANPET wrote:Here's the meeting on Youtube:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PcuNv-NK8mQ
(maybe, I'm having troubles getting it to load)
Loads OK for me. Start at the 42 minute mark.

at the 50 minute mark is where CM Yang starts voicing his disappointment in the personal attacks directed at CM Bender.
Last edited by noodles on April 25th, 2014, 11:51 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 2316-2320 Colfax Apartments

Postby FISHMANPET » April 25th, 2014, 11:46 am

It comes down to a value judgement. It's claimed that this is a turning point in his career, but staff reports suggest that this was built too early to be influence by Healy's trip to the Chicago's world fair. Either way, it comes down to a value judgement. Is every single house he designed worth of saving? I certainly don't think so, but obviously there are people that disagree with that.

It's also hard to know how genuine everybody is in their desire to save this as a Healy home, or if it's just another horse to hitch their "No Change" wagon agenda too. I have no doubt that some people (Like Anders Christianson) want to save this because Healy built it, but I'm not sure about everybody.

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Re: 2316-2320 Colfax Apartments

Postby noodles » April 25th, 2014, 12:04 pm

FISHMANPET wrote: It's also hard to know how genuine everybody is in their desire to save this as a Healy home, or if it's just another horse to hitch their "No Change" wagon agenda too. I have no doubt that some people (Like Anders Christianson) want to save this because Healy built it, but I'm not sure about everybody.
I think that's the case with a lot of folks. They see the passion that a few have about the home, and use it as a metaphor for their general aversion to the changing landscape. Development for development's sake is no good, but neither is preservation for preservation's sake. There seemed to be a lot of hyperbole flung around surrounding this house. Nicole Curtis drew the analogy that "you wouldn't trash a Picasso because there's a bunch more of them". A. Healy is no Picasso, and B. if we play the analogy out, this would be like if one of Picasso's less remarkable works was set on fire, bleached and drawn on with a sharpie. You wouldn't have it holding valuable real estate in the most highly trafficked area of the museum. The museum would probably just get rid of it.
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Re: 2316-2320 Colfax Apartments

Postby WHS » April 25th, 2014, 12:20 pm

I don't believe for a minute that this is about preservation. (Maybe for Anders Christensen.) But I've been to the vigils, I've read the blogs, and all you ever hear is people talking about those 45 units. Even Nicole Curtis, rehab addict, can't help but say "We don't need more apartments!" when addressing the masses. The people who want to tear it down know more about the supposed historic features of the house than the people who want to save it, because they've actually bothered to read the HPC staff report.

Somehow, houses always get a lot more historic when they're being replaced with apartment buildings. Funny how that works.

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Re: 2316-2320 Colfax Apartments

Postby mattaudio » April 25th, 2014, 12:54 pm

Development for development's sake is better than preservation for preservation's sake when it results in many more people having a place to live.

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Re: 2316-2320 Colfax Apartments

Postby David Greene » April 25th, 2014, 12:57 pm

WHS wrote:Somehow, houses always get a lot more historic when they're being replaced with apartment buildings. Funny how that works.
I get what you're saying but as I've noted before, you do have to understand where a lot of these folks are coming from. These are people who moved to the neighborhood in the '60's and '70's when it was a dump. They bought houses and restored them, often by hand. They worked to get awful traffic patterns fixed. They worked to get a lot of crime out of the area. They opened small businesses. They suffered through what seems to have been a thoughtless city rezoning that blanketed the entire area as R6 without consideration of what was there. Then a bunch of developers came in and built some really cheap, ugly apartment buildings. Keep in mind this was the time during which the city had the Metropolitan Building razed and committed many other urban sins.

They've managed to downzone about half the neighborhood, but the half that remains R6 does have historic houses in it and even the houses that aren't historic are undoubtedly beautiful.

They, not entirely without justification, fear a new wave of thoughtless development.

I don't agree with them on this particular project and in general I support more density in the area but it should in fact be done in a thoughtful manner. I think Lander has done that well with this project. The Franklin project is pretty much an example of how not to do it, though I generally support that project as well. The developers on that one really botched the rollout and community engagement.

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Re: 2316-2320 Colfax Apartments

Postby noodles » April 25th, 2014, 1:08 pm

Fair points David, but then it just sounds like they're victims of their own success. I guess I find it funny that people are appalled that, after making a place safer and more desirable, people then want to move there.

I personally am not a huge fan of the curb appeal of a lot of apartment buildings that have gone up in the past 15 years. But they certainly beat the vast majority of garbage that the 70s, 80s and 90s created. They're not THAT ugly.
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Re: 2316-2320 Colfax Apartments

Postby WHS » April 25th, 2014, 1:19 pm

David Greene wrote: They, not entirely without justification, fear a new wave of thoughtless development.
Oh, I totally agree. I'm not relentlessly pro-development by any means (although I very much support the Franklin project). There are smart ways to develop and dumb ways to develop. But the disingenuous nature of the fight to get this house declared historic really rubbed me the wrong way. Historic preservation laws exist to preserve historic buildings, not as a backdoor to force property owners to conform with their neighbor's preferences on how to dispose of land.

Plus, between Tuthill and Curtis, the two main proponents of preservation were one of the city's most notorious NIMBYs and a woman who literally has a direct financial interest in keeping old houses as difficult to develop as possible. And nothing about this proposed project was particularly offensive, even if you're not a fan of the current building style (I am not, personally). Basically, it was a terrible campaign even if vague fears of destructive development have some historical precedent.

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Re: 2316-2320 Colfax Apartments

Postby FISHMANPET » April 25th, 2014, 1:46 pm

Also some "changes" coming to the MRRDC, I wonder if they forgot that they're also opposed to Franklin-Lyndale or what exactly they're doing.

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Re: 2316-2320 Colfax Apartments

Postby degersblogg » April 25th, 2014, 1:49 pm

Anders Christensen expects to file a lawsuit. He says he's not done fighting until as long as the building still stands.

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Re: 2316-2320 Colfax Apartments

Postby Silophant » April 25th, 2014, 1:55 pm

FISHMANPET wrote:Also some "changes" coming to the MRRDC, I wonder if they forgot that they're also opposed to Franklin-Lyndale or what exactly they're doing.
Maybe they've realized that absolute preservationism is a losing strategy, and they're going to realign themselves as an advocacy group to work with developers towards... responsible development?




Naaaah.

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Re: 2316-2320 Colfax Apartments

Postby noodles » April 25th, 2014, 2:02 pm

degersblogg wrote:Anders Christensen expects to file a lawsuit. He says he's not done fighting until as long as the building still stands.
I'm wondering what grounds there are at all. He's experienced no financial damages as a result. I don't think the judge is going to have any precedent to justify overturning the council's ruling. It's going to be a big waste of time and resources to pursue this further.
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Re: 2316-2320 Colfax Apartments

Postby degersblogg » April 25th, 2014, 2:07 pm

noodles wrote:
degersblogg wrote:Anders Christensen expects to file a lawsuit. He says he's not done fighting until as long as the building still stands.
I'm wondering what grounds there are at all. He's experienced no financial damages as a result. I don't think the judge is going to have any precedent to justify overturning the council's ruling. It's going to be a big waste of time and resources to pursue this further.
He has no valid legal arguments to make. Lawsuit might actually do his cause more harm because judge just might rule that the HPC acted illegally when they initially denied demolition. Also, Mr. Christensen does have potential financial interest in this decision. He owns a painting business that specializes in restoring historical homes. Not saying he would definitely get business off if this if the decision went the other way, just that his type of business benefits from these type of buildings being restored.

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Re: 2316-2320 Colfax Apartments

Postby noodles » April 25th, 2014, 2:46 pm

degersblogg wrote: He has no valid legal arguments to make. Lawsuit might actually do his cause more harm because judge just might rule that the HPC acted illegally when they initially denied demolition....
That's what I'm thinking. This is going to unravel as one of those cases where it would have paid off to be much more measured and reasonable than to go full throttle on a single pet issue. If the preservationists showed any sign of being willing to actually negotiate (shy of Nicole's slap-in-the-face offer at 2/3rds off the competing offer) they would have laid the groundwork to city council and the developers being far more receptive to neighborhood input and involvement. Now they've poisoned the well and made themselves look foolish by holding freaking vigils and bullying councilmembers.

The best advice is to drop it and move on, and display that you're willing to compromise...or you'll find yourself losing a lot more than one old home.
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Re: 2316-2320 Colfax Apartments

Postby WestCoastDude » April 25th, 2014, 4:06 pm

I would have to say the unwillingness to comprise and the absolutist attitudes is disturbing. Reminds me of the government shutdown crazies who took everything to the brink and discredited themselves.


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