Lowertown Depot

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mattaudio
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Lowertown Depot

Postby mattaudio » February 26th, 2013, 2:14 pm

http://goo.gl/maps/MCnUq

Anybody know the status of this? I guess it was proposed as an eco village about 10 years ago but that never took off.

Aville_37
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Re: Lowertown Depot

Postby Aville_37 » February 26th, 2013, 5:38 pm

Do you have any more info?

mulad
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Re: Lowertown Depot

Postby mulad » February 26th, 2013, 9:15 pm

I think the only thing that happened within the last several years was that the "Lowertown Depot" lettering was added to the building.

It's pretty isolated a half-mile from anywhere. That's not the moon or anything, but hardly a suitable target for conversion to condos like the old warehouses over to the west by the Union Depot.

It's close to the floodplain -- I remember going over the Lafayette Freeway bridge one year as a kid and seeing the rail yard underwater (now ripped up and converted to the Bruce Vento Nature Sanctuary). If any (re)development of the Lowertown Depot were to happen in a more urbanist vein, I think there'd have to be a chain of new buildings put up leading to it. The topology doesn't seem great for that, but maybe some nice views can be put together.

Maybe it would work as an educational site related to the nature preserve? It might work out okay as a field trip destination, but I'm not sure it offers any more than other venues around the metro.

lordmoke
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Re: Lowertown Depot

Postby lordmoke » February 26th, 2013, 9:22 pm

mulad wrote:
Maybe it would work as an educational site related to the nature preserve? It might work out okay as a field trip destination, but I'm not sure it offers any more than other venues around the metro.
That was my first thought. Can't see how it would be useful for much else, unless St. Paul wanted to do a heritage streetcar between here and SPUD.

bptenor
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Re: Lowertown Depot

Postby bptenor » February 26th, 2013, 9:25 pm

I believe the vision/plan is to convert the Lowertown Depot into an educational center, possibly with offices or other uses on the tops floors. I remember a public survey going out about this idea, and historic reuse of the Lowertown Depot was by far the preferred option vs. a newly constructed ed. center. The Lower Phalen Creek website has some more info.

http://lowerphalencreek.org/interpretivecenter.html

fehler
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Re: Lowertown Depot

Postby fehler » February 27th, 2013, 9:26 am

I could see it converted to an events center, weddings/parties and the like.

mattaudio
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Re: Lowertown Depot

Postby mattaudio » February 27th, 2013, 9:34 am

Could the 70 be routed along 4th instead of going above on the Kellogg bridge?

mulad
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Re: Lowertown Depot

Postby mulad » February 27th, 2013, 10:38 am

Probably not without rebuilding the railroad bridges. Looks like 11 foot 6 inch clearance, plus there's this short single-lane section (vehicles take turns) in order to make room for a bike path. The street is also flood-prone, and digging farther down would likely make that problem worse.

Does anyone know if that rail spur on the west is still there? I was thinking Metro Transit might keep it as a way to deliver LRVs and other stuff to the Green Line's Lowertown maintenance facility, but I'm not sure. Anyway, that bridge could be removed or replaced with minimal impact. Similarly, the eastern bridge is now only being used by a bike/ped path. The big bridge in the middle would be difficult to replace, since it probably sees ~100 trains/day and is a major route for both BNSF and UP. The bridge is probably 100 years old or more. I'm not sure of it's condition, but if it needs to be replaced anytime soon, it would be important for the city or any other entity interested in making better use of 4th to get involved with the railroads' planning for swapping that out.

http://goo.gl/maps/oATuY

mattaudio
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Re: Lowertown Depot

Postby mattaudio » February 27th, 2013, 12:26 pm

I don't think the one lane thing would be much of an issue. But what clearances do buses need?

Re: LRV deliveries, I don't see why it would be necessary to have more than one track connection anywhere in the metro considering how relatively rare deliveries are.
Re: 4th Street... I think this could see some really creative low-density uses that are also low-impact, if done right.

mulad
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Re: Lowertown Depot

Postby mulad » February 27th, 2013, 5:22 pm

I'm not sure what clearance is required. Poking at New Flyer's website, it looks like their buses (conventional or hybrid) range from 10' 5" to 10' 10". Hybrids are a few inches taller than conventional, and CNG buses are a bit taller still, but those aren't in use around here as far as I know. So something could probably fit, as long as the road surface is flat enough -- there would be trouble if the approaches angle upward too fast.

All I know for sure is that Metro Transit didn't like the idea of running regular buses under this bridge near Como Park. Standard buses probably fit fine in the center lanes (12' 8"), but things would end badly if a driver were to drift off to the right (9' 4").

mattaudio
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Re: Lowertown Depot

Postby mattaudio » February 28th, 2013, 10:02 am

I wonder how the future Kittson Street in the Lafayette Bridge plans will interact with 4th here. I hope it intersects. Unless Kittson bridges over 4th, it also looks like this will remove the existing rail spur curve that parallels 4th St.

Also, the Googlesatellite viewdiffers from the layout on the MnDOT site. The MnDOT site shows the start of a street grid, so traffic heading from the bridge to downtown would take a left onto Kit St, left on 8th, left on the current Kittson Street, then right on 7th.

Instead, they built a giant U that loops traffic at higher speeds under 7th then up to 7th.

at40man
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Lowertown Landing (erm.... Depot. Please merge)

Postby at40man » October 9th, 2014, 8:37 am

Surprised there isn't a thread for this yet, given the number of proposals throughout the years to do something with this secluded building. It's in the news again: http://www.twincities.com/localnews/ci_ ... storiesrot


I can't say I'm too surprised. I bike by it regularly, and I think this building may be too far gone and not distinctive enough to save.
Last edited by at40man on October 9th, 2014, 8:40 am, edited 1 time in total.

at40man
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Re: Lowertown Landing

Postby at40man » October 9th, 2014, 8:40 am

Aaaaaaandddddddd.... I just realized I was looking up the wrong name. This thread can be merged. ;)

https://forum.streets.mn/viewtopic.php?f=16&t=1210


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