Welcome back to our three part series on Charlotte. We’ve arrived at part three. This is it, the omega. If you recall, all the way back in part one, we said this part would be broken up into three sections:
1. Residential and Commercial Development;
2. Transportation; and
So without further adieu, let’s jump right in. Ok, one quick disclaimer, Charlotte as a whole is pretty big, too big for one little three part column. With that in mind, I’m cutting off Charlotte at Denise Road, similar to the other parts. Maybe someday I can write an addendum addressing the southern portion of the neighborhood. But enough of that – Onward!
Dear readers, we interrupt our three part Charlotte series to give you a small morsel of something different before the grand finale. Consider this a palette cleanser, an intermezzo, if you will.
I looked up tired in the dictionary, and found this picture of 34 King Street in the Susan B. Anthony neighborhood. Seeing as the Carriage Factory lofts are being built immediately behind, I think it’s time for a major upgrade here. Allow me to present the all-new 34 King Street…
In part one of our three part Charlotte bonanza, we looked briefly at the history of Charlotte, from its formation in 1792, through its resort years and annexation in the early 20th century. In part two, we’ll look at Charlotte as it is today. Let’s start with the lay of the land. Shown above is the official definition of the city’s neighborhoods. As you know, Charlotte is the one at the top. Zooming in (and switching to Google maps) here’s what we see…
Welcome, readers, to the first of a three part series on Charlotte. This first part will serve as an introduction to the series and a brief history of Charlotte. The second part will be a survey, in the engineering sense, of the current state of Charlotte. It will include the demographics of the neighborhood and the built environment, as they exist today. Finally, the third part will layout a vision for Charlotte that works to harness all of the potential of the neighborhood. This final part will be broken into recommendations for residential and commercial development, transportation, and governance.
The plans described here will be ambitious, but we shouldn’t let ourselves shy away from ambition – as you may know, Charlotte has recently been in the news over some redevelopment plans. While Filling-In believes both plans have virtues, they both have numerous weaknesses as well. Because we are unassociated with any of the plans currently in play, and will believe they are built when we see it, the plans presented here will assume they did not happen, and instead will show a different vision of Charlotte’s future.
Ok, so by now you’ve heard all the commotion happening up near the port at Charlotte. The City of Rochester has two development proposals – one with 200 rental apartments, and one with 120 for-sale condos and 50 townhomes. Both would have retail and other mixed use space. But the BIG difference, one looks like Cornhill Landing, while the other would have—deep breath—tall buildings…
Well, it’s time to celebrate. Rochester has just won the 2014 Streetsblog USA Parking Madness tournament . To outsiders, Rochester is a Cinderella story (who in the world would have picked us to beat out Detroit in the second round?). But anyone who reads this blog is probably not surprised. We’ve been fighting the parking madness mindset on these pages for years. It’s just that now, the national blogosphere knows about Rochester’s dirty little parking problems. Our asphalt is hanging out there for the world to see.
How embarrassing. Right? Some people have asked, “Why would we want to win such a negative contest? Doesn’t this paint Rochester in a bad light?” Now the man who nominated Rochester, Matthew Denker, explains why he did…
Fellow Rochesterians, lend me your ears. I recently visited the reasonably pleasant city of Portland, OR. While I was there, I couldn’t help but notice a rather cleverly decorated, midcentury modern building. It was this one, actually…
Imagine you are the new owner of a giant, underutilized parking lot*. What would you do with it? Would you leave it as is? Tear out the pavement and start a community garden? What if there was an apartment building next to it. Would you tear it down and build a skyscraper? These are all excellent ideas. We here at filling in solicited input from a variety of fellow RochesterSubway.com contributors, and it’s clear that we all have different ideas about what to do…
*Disclaimer – I am a new part owner of a giant, underutilized parking lot. This one, in fact.
Welcome back, readers. It’s been a while. Today I’d like to look at a project that we could bring into the pipeline almost immediately. I say could, because there are almost assuredly zoning issues with what I’m proposing. That said, we could still get rolling on it immediately, because the site happens to already be on the market for $10,000! Let’s see what we’re getting for our money, what we’re building, and some numbers on the whole thing…
Welcome readers. I’m going on a slight deviation from my usual “Filling In” article to talk about the mean streets of Rochester. Let’s take a look at, eh, Main St. Yeah, Main St. What’s that looks like? Ok, well, there’s some tall(ish) buildings built to the street. There’s sidewalk, theoretically two driving lanes in each direction, and (supposedly) some street trees. If I were to give this street a grade, it would get an “in-complete.”
Oy, how I wish I could reconfigure things! Just pick stuff up and move it around. Maybe add a cycle track or a tree-lined median. Heh heh… can you say, STREET REMIX?!
One of the sites that the city has, let’s say aspirationally, earmarked for development is the site of the former Sherwood Shoe Company. The shoe company itself was incorporated in 1905 by Frederick A. Sherwood, and the factory for it was built on this site at roughly the same time. I’m less sure when it was torn down, but it is on the 1935 plat maps, so it was certainly there through the depression. (UPDATE: the photo above is from 1956)
As for what to do here, I think there are a million great ideas, and I am hoping that we are able to get a good conversation of the various uses: lofts where the factory used to be? More houses? All of these things and more? All great ideas, and I’m not one to come to the table empty handed, so let’s take a look at what I think should go here.
Welcome back dear readers. Today we’re going to try something a little different at Filling In. Let’s actually walk through a lightweight proposal in response to the city’s RFP for 19 and 21-23 Berlin St (due by 4pm this Friday, 7/19). Just as a disclaimer; I do not intend to submit this proposal. Additionally, you are welcome to take it and submit it, but I am not to be held liable for any damages should you do so.
Wow it’s been a while! This week, Let us take a look at Rochester’s best shot at an iconic piece of post-modern architecture downtown. No, not Midtown Tower. I’m talking about Midtown Plaza’s undeveloped “site 6″. As a quick refresher, here are the current plans:
Oh 1926, it seems like you were only 87 years ago. Oh wait, what, it was only 87 years ago? Ok then. Well, since the Neighborhood of the Arts is receiving so much press these days, let’s take a look at a piece of the neighborhood from then and see what was happening.
A great deal has already been written about the development planned at 933 University Ave. (see: here , here , and here ). Even so, it is important that we take a step back and really think about the kinds of arguments that are being made. Further, let us consider how the neighborhood could benefit from this development, how George Eastman House can meet its needs going forward (and better integrate with Neighborhood of the Arts, as they express a desire to do), and how to move the entire neighborhood towards the increased success it deserves…
The Landmark Society is partnering with the Park-Meigs Neighborhood Association to hold a public forum on the evening of Tuesday, May 21 at 597 East Avenue . Up for discussion: the timely and controversial topic of new development in preservation districts. This is a community conversation you will NOT want to miss.
A panel of speakers, representing developers, homeowners, business owners, urban planners, and The Landmark Society, will offer their perspective, followed by an open question and answer session. Speakers include Wayne Goodman, Executive Director of The Landmark Society; Glenn Kellogg, Urban Advisors; Joe Hanna, Hanna Properties; Steve Vogt, Rochester Young Professionals. RocSubway contributor, Matthew Denker will also weigh in. Can new development benefit preservation districts? How can the new co-exist with the old? What is “good” development? These are some of the questions this forum will attempt to address.
Dear readers, let’s take a short break from redeveloping Rochester. Instead, can we take a moment to consider that which we’ve lost? That which we can still repair?
This week, let’s talk about parks. Specifically, let’s talk about Lomb Memorial Park, and Schiller Park. But first, take a look at Columbus Circle in New York City (above). Oh man! Look at poor Christopher Columbus hanging out there all alone in the middle of traffic. At least he has a convenient parking spot for his car. Wait, what? You say that Columbus Circle doesn’t look anything like that? Well, I guess it doesn’t, now…
As some of you may or may not know, the city has finally released a Request for Proposals (RFP) on 88 Elm Street . Up front, here’s a link to the RFP , in case you run a development company, or if you’re Larry Glazer and you’re looking for another project to work on.
In any event, here’s some background on 88 Elm St. Somehow, despite being built sometime in the 60s, no one is exactly sure when 88 Elm St. was constructed, or where, exactly, it came from. You’d think that’d be impossible in this day and age, but it’s not. In 1998, the city decided it had enough of the owners of the property not paying their taxes and they took it. All well and good, except now it’s been empty for 15 years. It’s emptier than you might think. The city spent more than a million dollars on an asbestos abatement and a new roof. The building has no electrical system, no sprinkler system, no HVAC, no plumbing. It is a completely bare 13 story tower. That’s a bit of a rarity, and it could be yours for only $360,000. Apparently that’s the market rate for the 13-story husk of a building…
One of the best places to put additional density is near public parks. Why you ask? Well, that’s an excellent question. Not only do parks double as excellent backyards that homeowners don’t need to mow, but they provide excellent views (that will never go away), and density around parks makes the parks themselves more attractive to passers-by.
All of this translates to adding housing around pre-existing parks. This should be a priority for the city. While I am hoping to tackle a master plan for Brown Square Park (by Frederick Law Olmsted, no less!), let’s start out with something a little smaller…
Well, dear readers, I must admit that this is not exactly what I had planned when I left you the last time. That said, please bear with me while we look at something a little bit different.
John Baker, Steve Gullace, Chris Gullace have proposed to construct a new gym and a 48 unit apartment building at 759 Park Ave . The gym would be for the Talmudic Institute next door, while the apartments would be for rent. This has, not surprisingly, drawn a raft of criticism from the residents of the Park Ave neighborhood…
After the Erie Canal was rerouted south of downtown Rochester, the Rochester
Industrial & Rapid Transit Railway (the subway) was built in
its place as a link between the five different railroads and interurban trolley
lines that served the Rochester area. As the industrial landscape of Rochester
changed, and highways replaced the railroads, the Rochester subway gradually
became a relic of a bygone era. In 1956 the subway was abandoned and much of
its route was converted into Interstate 490 built to connect Rochester
with the New York State Thruway (I-90). Read more about the history of the Rochester Subway.
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public dialogue around how we can better connect the neighborhoods of Rochester
NY, surrounding communities, and their cultural offerings. Rochesters
future is written in her past. Let's rediscover it.