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Cleveland's beautiful, modern apartment proposal for downtown

Home Forums General Columbus Discussion Development Cleveland's beautiful, modern apartment proposal for downtown

Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 43 total)
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  • #1103304

    gramarye
    Participant

    This was the highlight of the article for me:

    The city is considering a form-based code, a more flexible zoning overlay, for the Warehouse District site. The code change, which requires action by the planning commission and Cleveland City Council, would allow the developers and planners to be more creative and get around requirements for a series of variances.

    “This is the start of the process,” said Tony Coyne, an attorney working with the developers and the former, longtime planning commission chairman. “This type of zoning is relatively new to Cleveland … and probably will start a discussion about modernizing the zoning code in general.

    “It’s difficult to look at a typical zoning code and be able to accomplish a 21st century development in an older industrial city like Cleveland.”

    Fantastic, and I hope this goes through. Lessening the number of variances needed to build the kind of development that should be the default (i.e., not “variant”) in urban cores is long overdue. You shouldn’t need special permission to build mixed-use (and possibly with reduced parking); at this point, if anything, you should need special permission to build a single-use building with a giant surface lot.

    #1103307

    I certainly applaud the listing of new housing for downtown Cleveland, but, looking at the list, I know some are waiting for tax credits, financing, etc. Columbus and Cleveland are very different and unique in our long range planning and development and its great to see Columbus moving forward, adding jobs, new residences, parks and renewing older neighborhoods in the city.

    #1103309

    jbcmh81
    Participant

    Awesome development, hope that it comes to fruition.

    Its apples and oranges to compare whats happening in Downtown CLE to Cbus. Development and growth have been concentrated in Downtown CLE for years in the same way that growth here has been concentrated in SN, German Village, Grandview, Campus ect.

    Cleveland also had a great building stock that could easily be converted to residential, not the case in Columbus.

    Cleveland overall continues to lose population, so even the concentrated growth in the downtown area just represents a shift of population, not a gain. Columbus is gaining more than 12K each and every year. I guess I don’t see how that would make Cleveland the better market in terms of bigger projects. The residential vacancy rates for Downtown Columbus are every bit as low as they are in Downtown Cleveland. And as we know, even the concentrated demand in the SN area doesn’t exactly translate to a bunch of big projects, though there for perhaps different reasons. Downtown has tons of completely blank slate sites and doesn’t have to worry about violating historic neighborhood standards. The project mentioned here for Cleveland is also not converting an existing building, but is largely new construction.

    I really think the issue is developers. We have very few, if any, willing to take on the risk and cost of projects of this size. Cleveland, and indeed a lot of other cities, seem to have either a larger collection of local developers, or just a different culture of expectation. Maybe they’re just pushing for more than we are.

    I know this issue gets beaten to death, but the fact is that it will continue to be brought up and debated so long as it remains an issue, not unlike the lack of rail.

    #1103310

    jbcmh81
    Participant

    Has anyone made a list of the proposed/under construction list of apartments/condos in the Downtown area as of today similar to that Cleveland comment above?

    You will probably see a similar list to Cleveland just more smaller scale projects. Some on that Cleveland list will take years to get to completion (if getting built at all). Columbus is doing right with its Downtown development, correct scale and costs which will actually be able to have shovels in the ground. Downtown Columbus has such a large area to work with, but in time the larger scale projects will come in.

    Columbus has much larger rental units in construction across the metro than Cleveland has currently. Must look at the grander picture here.

    Cleveland also has 3x the downtown population that Columbus does. Columbus may be able to get more projects built faster by doing small scale, but if the goal is to get serious population Downtown, along with retail and other amenities, this is not the way to do it. At least not if you want it anytime soon.

    #1103311
    MichaelC
    MichaelC
    Participant

    FWIW, the Plain Dealer article reported that Cleveland’s downtown population is approximately 13,000, versus our 7,500.

    #1103317
    Walker Evans
    Walker Evans
    Keymaster

    While Cleveland’s Downtown has a lot to be admired, the bigger of picture of peer metro areas studies paints a different picture… from here:

    http://allcolumbusdata.com/?p=4555

    Total Growth Rank of 25-34 Population 2010-2014

    1. Austin: 37,591
    2. San Antonio: 26,066
    3. Columbus: 23,175
    4. Chicago: 15,339
    5. Charlotte: 14,330

    17. Cincinnati: 5,180

    25. Toledo: 2,081
    26. Cleveland: 1,706

    29. Dayton: 818
    30. Akron: 761

    32. Youngstown: -16

    #1103318

    jbcmh81
    Participant

    FWIW, the Plain Dealer article reported that Cleveland’s downtown population is approximately 13,000, versus our 7,500.

    I’ve seen it listed as high as 30,000, so I guess it depends what the source is measuring. Even at that one, it is still a lot larger.

    #1103320

    wpcc88
    Participant

    To be fair Cleveland is nothing like Columbus. I have lived in both and it compares more to Pittsburgh or Cincinnati than to Columbus. If we’re comparing better options would be Charlotte, Indianapolis and Kansas City. The former being historically larger more significant cities and the latter being more modern or “up and coming.”

    I know it has been mentioned in here a few times but Cleveland had more “bones” to work with; they have large apartment buildings because the warehouse district had them already in place. This proposal is on land that has had about 4-5 of these similar projects proposed for it just in the last 10-15 years. Cleveland though is finally executing these plans because they have to in order to remain relevant. Columbus always is progressing and that’s what in my opinion makes it overall the #1 option of the “3 C’s.”

    Also as far as height is concerned I will refer back to the existing buildings already in Cleveland. They have a much smaller downtown core to work with so they have to build up rather than out in pretty much all but the eastern edges touching I-90 in downtown proper. This is VERY similar to what downtown Pittsburgh has to work with which is why they too build up rather than out.

    In short I would rather have 5 stories of infill with potential to expand than flat parking lots in our core. We are developing new neighborhoods where the Cleveland’s of the world are revitalizing and trying to in a way catch back up. All have their positives and negatives but I believe Columbus is growing sustainable and right for the future. If we weren’t then we wouldn’t have cities coming to copy off of the Arena District. Believe me there will be a day when there is a need for another tower but that day is not today or tomorrow it will be in the distant future. A

    #1103323
    Ned23
    Ned23
    Participant

    It’s interesting watching the entire commuting patterns reverse in cities. The residents are moving back downtown and the jobs are out in the suburbs. Seattle is the classic example of the reverse commuting phenomenon, it’s just a decade or two ahead of most everyone else.

    For a while Seattle’s traffic became very balanced, eventually, however, residential population tipped so far to the city that they started to see outbound traffic jams in the morning and inbound traffic in the evening. They had to start redesigning the roads, which were originally designed for commuting into the city. The inbound traffic in the evening was actually more of a problem because people who already lived in the suburbs were heading into the city to patronize and work in the food and entertainment venues in the city.

    #1103331

    drew
    Participant

    In short I would rather have 5 stories of infill with potential to expand than flat parking lots in our core. We are developing new neighborhoods where the Cleveland’s of the world are revitalizing and trying to in a way catch back up. All have their positives and negatives but I believe Columbus is growing sustainable and right for the future. If we weren’t then we wouldn’t have cities coming to copy off of the Arena District. Believe me there will be a day when there is a need for another tower but that day is not today or tomorrow it will be in the distant future.

    I couldn’t agree more. And, to take it a step further, I’m not convinced that excessive height is really an especially crucial or desirable trait in a city anyhow. Our city’s greatest assets are its actually truly livable neighborhoods, and I’d personally like to see them prioritized over trying to create a hyper-concentration in one specific area.

    Frankly, it seems bizarre to me to judge cities by the density of their downtowns, and concentrating people in one area doesn’t even seem to make sense as a strategy for justifying new modes of public transportation.

    We’re Columbus. Lets grow prudently and thoughtfully, and leave the grandiose gestures to other cities that are flailing to recapture what they believe they’ve lost, and tossing out big new projects that’ll be roundly judged as grotesque or declasse with a decade or two.

    #1103333
    Walker Evans
    Walker Evans
    Keymaster

    Should I start a new thread for being jealous of Pittsburgh too, or just post this here? ;)

    http://www.gizmag.com/pittsburgh-lower-hill-district-masterplan-big/40492/

    #1103335

    WJT
    Participant

    Should I start a new thread for being jealous of Pittsburgh too, or just post this here? ;)

    http://www.gizmag.com/pittsburgh-lower-hill-district-masterplan-big/40492/

    Make a ‘Rival cities’ development thread. Then sticky it like the ‘welcome’ thread at the top. That would teach us to bitch and complain! lol ;)

    #1103338

    NEOBuckeye
    Participant

    To be fair Cleveland is nothing like Columbus. I have lived in both and it compares more to Pittsburgh or Cincinnati than to Columbus. If we’re comparing better options would be Charlotte, Indianapolis and Kansas City. The former being historically larger more significant cities and the latter being more modern or “up and coming.”

    I know it has been mentioned in here a few times but Cleveland had more “bones” to work with; they have large apartment buildings because the warehouse district had them already in place. This proposal is on land that has had about 4-5 of these similar projects proposed for it just in the last 10-15 years. Cleveland though is finally executing these plans because they have to in order to remain relevant. Columbus always is progressing and that’s what in my opinion makes it overall the #1 option of the “3 C’s.”

    Also as far as height is concerned I will refer back to the existing buildings already in Cleveland. They have a much smaller downtown core to work with so they have to build up rather than out in pretty much all but the eastern edges touching I-90 in downtown proper. This is VERY similar to what downtown Pittsburgh has to work with which is why they too build up rather than out.

    In short I would rather have 5 stories of infill with potential to expand than flat parking lots in our core. We are developing new neighborhoods where the Cleveland’s of the world are revitalizing and trying to in a way catch back up. All have their positives and negatives but I believe Columbus is growing sustainable and right for the future. If we weren’t then we wouldn’t have cities coming to copy off of the Arena District. Believe me there will be a day when there is a need for another tower but that day is not today or tomorrow it will be in the distant future. A

    +1, Took the words right out of my head.

    Enough already (again) with the Cleveland-Columbus comparisons. They are two different models of city development that have virtually nothing in common with each other, aside from being within the same state. If you think Cleveland is what Columbus should be using as a benchmark, you might as well also be comparing us to Philadelphia, Chicago, Pittsburgh, or even Detroit, comparisons that taken at face value would also make little sense.

    Indianapolis and Austin–two state capitals with similar populations and development histories (e.g. annexation, sprawl)–remain better models for comparison with Columbus, despite being in states other than Ohio.

    In any case, I’m glad to see Cleveland making gains like this, but as a Columbus resident, I don’t see this at all as bad for us. It’s good to see old Rust Belt towns like Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Buffalo, etc. dusting themselves off and moving forward towards a better future. All the better for the whole extended Great Lakes/Midwest region, as well as cities like Columbus that happen to be a part of it.

    #1103343

    Roger846
    Participant

    I’m happy that Cleveland’s downtown is coming back and getting great projects. It’s a nice city, IMHO. And, I’m also happy with any infill we can get downtown even if it’s not skyscrapers. But my amateur (no knowledge of real estate development, urban planning), just-an-interested-citizen comments are:

    1. Cleveland’s good news doesn’t mean we can’t think big here in Columbus, too. I think the reason we don’t get the bigger buildings here and Cleveland does is that Cleveland and its developers and citizens have a history, and therefore a mindset, of being a bigger, more important city. So, they tend to think bigger for their projects as befits a big city, whether or not that city is actually bigger than Columbus. But, Columbus, and its developers, have a history, and therefore a mindset, of being a smaller, college town that only cares about OSU football, so our developers and citizens think smaller for their projects.

    2. I agree with others that over time, we’ll grow and “there will be a day” (as mentioned above) when we build more tall buildings. The only problem is that those of us that like to see skyscrapers and exciting things are living today. So, it just gets frustrating.

    3. Even if Cleveland and Pittsburgh aren’t good comparisons, it seems like many of those cities that are (Austin, Charlotte, Nashville, etc.) are always getting announcing new buildings, light rail systems, etc. despite the fact that they may have the same issues with parking, etc. that we have. But, I do admit they’re mostly in the Sun Belt and are probably growing faster in population than us.

    #1103360

    NEOBuckeye
    Participant

    3. Even if Cleveland and Pittsburgh aren’t good comparisons, it seems like many of those cities that are (Austin, Charlotte, Nashville, etc.) are always getting announcing new buildings, light rail systems, etc. despite the fact that they may have the same issues with parking, etc. that we have. But, I do admit they’re mostly in the Sun Belt and are probably growing faster in population than us.

    I would say the very fact that Austin, Charlotte, Nashville (Indianapolis, Phoenix, Salt Lake City, etc.) are growing as we are, and are all announcing new buildings, light rail systems, etc., despite having the same issues with parking, etc. that we have, is really all the more reason we should be looking to them to see what they are doing right to make these things happen, and to figure out why it is that we can’t even budge the needle forward on building a commuter rail line from Port Columbus Airport to the Convention Center, and what we can do about it.

    There is a reason why in urban planning and development circles, Columbus is featured in discussions about Sun Belt cities like Austin, Charlotte, etc. rather than with Rust Belt cities like Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Buffalo, etc. The former make for a much better comparison with Columbus across the board than do the latter–apples to apples, instead of apples to oranges.

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