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  #161  
Old Posted Jan 22, 2011, 1:13 AM
Rizzo Rizzo is offline
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The big projects just keep on coming. I'm happy to say the Athletic campus is almost entirely rebuilt/renovated....and not just that. U of M has certainly not skimped on the architecture quality. The only athletic building that desperately needs attention is the CCRB. It needs to be leveled and replaced by a building that is comparable (or better ) to Ohio State's RPAC....which I am (saddened to say) is one of the best college sports and recreation buildings in existence.

I'm am very happy to hear about the scoreboards at Michigan stadium though! When I went for a game last season, I was surprised to find the old ones still standing. I had thought they were going to be replaced. I look forward to seeing what the new ones will look like.
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  #162  
Old Posted Jan 25, 2011, 4:09 PM
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Owner of Ann Arbor's Georgetown Mall site seeking tax breaks on $30 million project
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The owner of Georgetown Mall in Ann Arbor is seeking millions of dollars in tax breaks to help finance a $30 million redevelopment of the former strip mall site along Packard Street.

Bloomfield Hills-based developer Craig Schubiner made his case Monday night to the city's Brownfield Review Committee, which offered positive feedback on preliminary plans for tax-increment financing on a new mixed-use project called Packard Square.
http://www.annarbor.com/news/owner-o...llion-project/
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  #163  
Old Posted Mar 28, 2011, 6:18 AM
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New Law Quad Academic Building looking pretty badass. Wish that masonry slip plane about the 2nd story windows would've been better concealed though. More photos coming soon...


Source: Me
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  #164  
Old Posted Mar 28, 2011, 1:30 PM
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Looks great...
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  #165  
Old Posted Apr 2, 2011, 5:41 PM
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Here's the article covering the possibility of Village Corner moving to North Campus. Michigan alumni and former Ann arbor residents gasp in horror!! Yes, VC was very much an Ann Arbor staple, and it wasn't just a liquor store. It sold all the groceries you ever needed in a few aisles, and had plenty of fresh produce. For Michigan students, it was the closest grocery store to campus without having to get on a bus.

The 601 Forest Development demolished VC, and although they offered incentives to allow retailers to move back in, it didn't appear VC would be returning. Kind of sad. I can only hope downtown AA eventually gets some sort of grocery store eventually. I've always found it incredibly strange that AA can have every single type of restaurant or coffee shop you can think of, but not a grocer.


http://www.annarbor.com/business-rev...-north-campus/
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  #166  
Old Posted May 3, 2011, 7:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hayward View Post
Here's the article covering the possibility of Village Corner moving to North Campus. Michigan alumni and former Ann arbor residents gasp in horror!! Yes, VC was very much an Ann Arbor staple, and it wasn't just a liquor store. It sold all the groceries you ever needed in a few aisles, and had plenty of fresh produce. For Michigan students, it was the closest grocery store to campus without having to get on a bus.

The 601 Forest Development demolished VC, and although they offered incentives to allow retailers to move back in, it didn't appear VC would be returning. Kind of sad. I can only hope downtown AA eventually gets some sort of grocery store eventually. I've always found it incredibly strange that AA can have every single type of restaurant or coffee shop you can think of, but not a grocer.


http://www.annarbor.com/business-rev...-north-campus/
I think the Courtyard Shops would make a good location. It's just barely pedestrian friendly to the North Campus dorms, but it's in good proximity to the apartment complexes along Plymouth Rd.
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  #167  
Old Posted May 4, 2011, 10:31 PM
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Ann Arbor City Council gives OK to $48.2 million redevelopment of blighted Georgetown Mall property

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The Ann Arbor City Council voted unanimously Monday night to approve a site plan for Packard Square, a $48.2 million redevelopment of the blighted Georgetown Mall property.

Bloomfield Hills-based developer Craig Schubiner of Harbor Georgetown LLC, who was in the audience but did not speak, plans to move forward with constructing a four-story, mixed-use building containing 230 apartment units and 23,790 square feet of retail space.
http://www.annarbor.com/news/ann-arb...mall-property/
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  #168  
Old Posted May 5, 2011, 5:16 AM
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The renderings seem somewhat misleading, wouldn't this be more like a 5 story building, or do they really intend to raise the level of the site that much? The renderings show the retail store entrances level with the street. That's impossible, it can't be that way unless they are hauling in tons of fill.
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  #169  
Old Posted May 20, 2011, 2:10 AM
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Regents approve design for glittering makeover of Crisler Arena

BY DAVID JESSE DETROIT FREE PRESS STAFF WRITER
Quote:
When Michigan basketball fans enter Crisler Arena following a $52-million makeover, they’ll be greeted by a large, glowing block “M” situated in a waterfall.


Those fans also will see more restrooms, more concessions, a club for premium seat holders and a ton of windows that will allow the arena to “glow” when in use at night.


The plan calls for an entirely new building around the existing structure, architects told the University of Michigan’s Board of Regents this afternoon.
Renderings of the new Crisler










[img]cmsimg.freep.com/apps/pbcsi.dll/bilde?NewTbl=1&Site=C4&Date=20110519&Category=SPORTS06&ArtNo=105190804&Ref=PH&Item=6&Maxw=620&Maxh=465&q=60[/img]
http://www.freep.com/apps/pbcs.dll/g...5190804&Ref=PH
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  #170  
Old Posted May 20, 2011, 3:54 AM
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It strangely reminds me of a small-town convention center like this one in Springfield (Ohio):


http://mw2.google.com/mw-panoramio/p...l/45168891.jpg
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  #171  
Old Posted May 20, 2011, 12:30 PM
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Not very interesting...
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  #172  
Old Posted May 20, 2011, 1:05 PM
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Originally Posted by subterranean View Post
Not very interesting...
I agree. It's just kind of blah. Looks like the entrance to a small-town library or municipal building. I was expecting something way more big-impact. It's still rocking that late 90's early 2000's pomo look. You have Michigan stadium next door with these wonderful grand entrances and colonnades, and then these small non-rescript entrances to Crisler next door.

Last edited by Rizzo; May 20, 2011 at 1:22 PM.
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  #173  
Old Posted May 21, 2011, 12:48 AM
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If I'm to be honest, I've always thought Crisler was a sort of a pig, and this just seems like make-up on it. If I was spending the money, I'd have replaced it entirely.
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  #174  
Old Posted May 26, 2011, 10:02 PM
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Dave Brandon envisions Michigan Stadium growing to 119,000

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Michigan athletic director Dave Brandon has talked recently, including Wednesday, about a facilities master plan the athletic department is considering.


One element involves expanding Michigan Stadium at some point. Speaking on WTKA-AM (1050)'s "Michigan Insider" show this morning, Brandon said capacity could grow by another 10,000 seats.
http://www.freep.com/article/2011052...text|FRONTPAGE
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  #175  
Old Posted Jun 5, 2011, 6:18 PM
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Update on some Construction Projects

A photo update for a few of the many construction projects in A2.

New City Hall:





Zaragon Place 2 (14 story apartment building):



601 Forest (14 story student apartment building):



Underground Parking (replacing a surface lot near A2 Library):


All photos are mine and are hosted on Flickr.
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  #176  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2011, 12:18 AM
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Thanks Jim, these updates are appreciated. A shame we don't have local forumers living in A2 anymore.

I really liked the City Hall design in the renderings, but I'm not the biggest fan of the final product. I was really hoping for something like stone instead of that corrugated metal paneling. I realize cost was a big issue, but I would have opted for a metal panel with a smooth finish and very subtle variances in color.

Everything on the facade tries to compete against one another. The varying colors are too contrasted to be a backdrop to varying fenestration up top. Even the window openings are a little too big and random. The design loses its elegance, which is a bit stronger at the front because the side windows lack any sort of relationship to one another. I would have done ribbon windows that keep within the same horizontal datum, but slip past one another with varying lengths on each level to still achieve that random look, but are much more crisp and clean. You could even "pop out" certain window modules to achieve the depth they were obviously trying to shoot for.

The brick portion seems odd. I think the material is appropriate. It draws a relationship to the existing building, but it seems wallpapered on. It's akin to the strip mall architecture where they forcefully try to break up the facade with a mere application of a different material to create a zone. I would have bumped out the brick portion, or use a less reflected glass to reveal a brick volume slipped beneath the metal volume.

The front looks great, but it's almost a disappointment when you enter the portico only to find nothing there! Just a blank wall of glass. I hope that area won't serve just a mere purpose of providing shelter. I take it the entrance is between the old and new buildings...but again things compete with one another. Such a strong street facade and they tuck the entrance way back?

Anyway, sorry for the architecture criticism. The rest of the projects look like they are progressing nicely. I'm sure I'll have some opinions on those when they are complete.
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  #177  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2011, 11:47 AM
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Village Green project

The council is being asked to approve changes to an agreement with Village Green Residential Properties LLC, effectively lowering the purchase price of city-owned land the developer wants to buy to build downtown apartments at the corner of First and Washington.

The city entered into an option-to-purchase agreement with Village Green in February 2007 and it was last amended in August 2010 to extend the term of the option to June 1, 2011. The city administrator later exercised authority to extend the timeline to Aug. 30, 2011.

City officials say they and representatives of the Downtown Development Authority have been meeting with Village Green on a regular basis since last August and significant progress has been made. The council has authorized general obligation bonds in connection with the project, which includes a 244-space parking garage in addition to 156 apartments.

Village Green also has provided the city with construction financing documents. Negotiation of the condominium documents and completion of the design/development plans for the 11-story project (8 above grade) also has taken place.

A key issue for agreement, according to city officials, was a mutual acceptance of the foundation design, specifically how it would handle the below-ground water table.

"Since this project is in the Allen's Creek area the water table and flooding issues are of great importance to the city and the developer," reads a memo prepared by Mary Fales, senior assistant city attorney, and Tom Crawford, interim city administrator.

"The city, working with the DDA, desired a 'bathtub' design for areas where the water table could rise to meet the deck's foundation. This design in essence prevents water from entering the structure and is similar to how the DDA designed the Fifth Avenue structure," the memo says.

Fales and Crawford say in the memo that it's in the city's best interest to avoid the risk of ongoing pumping by extending the "bathtub" design to encompass the entire foundation. The added cost of the design change is estimated to be about $250,000.

Since a portion of the foundation would have required the "bathtub" anyway, city staff is recommending the City Council agree to contribute $100,000 toward the design change. The developer would be required to fund the remaining $150,000.

City staff is recommending the contribution be achieved by reducing the sales price for the city-owned land from $3.3 million to $3.2 million in the option-to-purchase agreement.

Ryan J. Stanton covers government and politics for AnnArbor.com. Reach him at ryanstanton@annarbor.com or 734-623-2529. You also can follow him on Twitter or subscribe to AnnArbor.com's e-mail newsletters.
http://www.annarbor.com/news/ann-arb...d-medical-mar/
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  #178  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2011, 6:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hayward View Post
Thanks Jim, these updates are appreciated. A shame we don't have local forumers living in A2 anymore.

I really liked the City Hall design in the renderings, but I'm not the biggest fan of the final product. I was really hoping for something like stone instead of that corrugated metal paneling. I realize cost was a big issue, but I would have opted for a metal panel with a smooth finish and very subtle variances in color.

Everything on the facade tries to compete against one another. The varying colors are too contrasted to be a backdrop to varying fenestration up top. Even the window openings are a little too big and random. The design loses its elegance, which is a bit stronger at the front because the side windows lack any sort of relationship to one another. I would have done ribbon windows that keep within the same horizontal datum, but slip past one another with varying lengths on each level to still achieve that random look, but are much more crisp and clean. You could even "pop out" certain window modules to achieve the depth they were obviously trying to shoot for.

The brick portion seems odd. I think the material is appropriate. It draws a relationship to the existing building, but it seems wallpapered on. It's akin to the strip mall architecture where they forcefully try to break up the facade with a mere application of a different material to create a zone. I would have bumped out the brick portion, or use a less reflected glass to reveal a brick volume slipped beneath the metal volume.

The front looks great, but it's almost a disappointment when you enter the portico only to find nothing there! Just a blank wall of glass. I hope that area won't serve just a mere purpose of providing shelter. I take it the entrance is between the old and new buildings...but again things compete with one another. Such a strong street facade and they tuck the entrance way back?

Anyway, sorry for the architecture criticism. The rest of the projects look like they are progressing nicely. I'm sure I'll have some opinions on those when they are complete.


Yeah, I agree.

I personally would prefer a purer form and facade. I think facade arrangements like that are meant to express the complexity of the program. I think that makes more sense for a library, but for something like city government, fitting everything in a very simple and logical arrangement would make a better impression.

I think the building could have related more to the original building. The metal could have been flat and white, and the brick could have been orange. This would also help create a more cohesive government complex, which I think would improve impressions as well.

A civic plaza with some trees and seating and a water feature would be nice. Community events could be held here, people in general could relax there, and political events could be held there. And even better, some kind of iconic artwork could be commissioned and used in some of the city's branding like the Spirit of Detroit. I don't know what they have planned for the left over space on the site, they might be doing a nice plaza after all.

These things would take more money and some more political will to do though. What they did is better than most of the other things getting built in Ann Arbor, and it's better than what I would have expected, although I think a city like Ann Arbor should have a really nice city hall.
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  #179  
Old Posted Jun 7, 2011, 6:39 AM
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I live in Milan and I bike into Ann Arbor frequently. I could get construction updates for you guys.
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  #180  
Old Posted Jun 8, 2011, 11:50 PM
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Should new Ann Arbor retail development be 7 times proposed size?



Quote:
Plans for Arbor Hills Crossing generated a collision between planning principles and market forces when they went before the Ann Arbor Planning Commission — for the first time — on Tuesday night.

The developers went into the meeting knowing that a decision would be delayed, due to some missing information from state road officials.

But they — and others — may have been as surprised as me about the comment from Planning Commission Bonnie Bona made during the meeting about the size of the project.

In a town that's expressed a whole lot of fears about density over the past decade, Bona raised the question: What kept Campus Realty and North Shore Properties Group from taking this project from the proposed 90,000 square feet to the maximum allowed by zoning: 649,066 square feet?

Some of that could be office and residential, aided by underground parking.

But really: 649,066 square feet on the 7 acres fronting one of the busiest roads in Washtenaw County?

On the planning front, we need rules that can deliver an overall vision for a community. Raising the question when preparing to evaluate plans is an important component of that.

Yet there's a practical element driving that, too. I often use the catchphrase "market forces," but really what has to happen in development, for it to be successful, is that people have to want to be a part of it.
http://www.annarbor.com/business-rev...proposed-size/
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