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122 Olde Towne - New Apartment Development Proposed on Parsons Avenue

Home Forums General Columbus Discussion 122 Olde Towne – New Apartment Development Proposed on Parsons Avenue

Viewing 15 posts - 91 through 105 (of 140 total)
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  • #995211

    Coy
    Participant

    I think, for once, the comment section of this Dispatch article nails several points:

    “As can be expected, another city of Columbus’s neighborhood development plans has been ignored and appointees of our Mayor have performed as good foot soldiers should. By now, most neighborhood folks with any credibility that are involved with formulating neighborhood development plans know that they are not worth the paper they are written on when it comes time to confront the BZA or City Council. After hundreds of hours are spent by City employees and concerned citizens of our neighborhoods to compile development standards, we are led to believe that these documents will be followed in good faith when a developer wishes to build something that does not conform to them. These plans are made only to give neighborhood folks a sense of hope and belief that they have some kind of input in how their community should look. They are a complete waste of time and taxpayers money. Things at the BZA have not changed in over the 20 plus years that I had spent there on numerous occasions defending plans of the University District. Only the faces have changed. As long as members of the BZA are appointed by the Mayor, developers in this city will have their way. When you consider the amount of power BZA members hold, these members should be elected by the citizens of Columbus. Some of the current members have no business serving in such an important position that has everlasting impacts on our community. One BZA member once commented to me that he could not understand how I could be against a particular development when the Director of a certain city department was in favor of it. It was quite apparent that he could not reason on his own, but was merely serving on the board for the interest of others and voting has directed to. The term “Smart Growth” has become a thing of the past. If you want to develop anything of any size with any number of variances in Columbus at this time, just open your pocket book and you can become a player.”

    It also seems that someone dropped the ball when the OTE development plan was put together, which clearly states that retail on Parsons is the #1 priority. The lot should have been rezoned at this point. It wasn’t, and here we are. I’d also agree with the comments above that there seemed to be other motivations for the board to vote in favor of this development, considering there was an exceedingly large amount of opposition to it, and specific reasonable arguments against the variances.

    As someone who frequents this entire strip daily, this development is way overpriced and I expect it to fail in terms of the pricepoint and occupancy. It also will effectively choke off retail at the southern portion of the Parsons gateway once Carabar and ET Paul are gone. It looks like the focus should now be on the Oak/Parsons corners for any continued breath of life.

    I think Bobby Silver said it best last night, after 2.5 long hours of debate… there are people touting this as a cornerstone for OTE, but it feels more like a tombstone to us.

    #995246

    citywalker
    Participant

    <div class=”d4p-bbt-quote-title”>heresthecasey wrote:</div>

    <div class=”d4p-bbt-quote-title”>Pro Se wrote:</div><br>
    So glad to see that this was approved.

    +1

    To both of you: Why? Seems like something you’d hate. No ground floor retail and all.

    I don’t want to speak for others but I suspect that the reason people outside of the neighborhood and area are for it is that there is a perception that OTE is a rundown ghetto. But this shiny new development will attract people “with disposable income” and that will fix the perceived problem.

    #995251

    heresthecasey
    Participant

    To both of you: Why? Seems like something you’d hate. No ground floor retail and all.

    I know you’re just trolling ;-) , but, let’s see,

    Urban infill (+)
    Added residents/density (+)
    Redevelopment of vacant lot (+)
    Environmental cleanup of existing brownfield site (+)
    Private investment/new constuction in an area primed for it (+)
    Increase in diversity of neighborhood housing options (+)
    Adequate on-site parking provision (+)
    Appropriate urban design, built to the lot line along Parsons, entry to units directly from the street (+)
    Additional residents to support existing walkable amenities/transit/retail (+)

    The proposed reconfiguration of Parsons in front of this property by ODOT and the uncertainty regarding its timeframe or specifics re: implementation make it a risky and unappealing spot to develop new retail space. There are also a number of other properties in the existing business district (at least 6) along Parsons between Bryden and Broad where new retail and mixed-use development could occur in the future, in addition to no less than four storefronts which already exist and are presently unoccupied.

    More people living in the immediate vicinity = more retail spending power = more attractiveness to initiate future development activity.

    #995286
    rus
    rus
    Participant

    I know you’re just trolling ;-)

    Nah, it’s confusing; when it was a parking garage downtown it was all about following community standards. Here, it’s about getting a variance from same.

    You seem to be saying that, for you at least, the upside outweighs the lack of retail. I may or may not agree with your criteria but weighing things that way is perfectly reasonable.

    #995290

    Coy
    Participant

    The buildings next to Carabar are currently long term storage for tires for ET Paul and I’m told they are an unholy mess for use for anything else.
    While they could eventually be used for retail, it’s still going to be a long way off (post ET Paul) before anyone could even consider rehabbing them for other uses.

    #995316

    citywalker
    Participant

    Environmental cleanup of existing brownfield site (+)

    I think this is one of those things that the developer floated as a rumor and the Dispatch helped out by using its “credibility” to spread the word. Has anyone seen any documents or heard anyone (who can be trusted) say anything that can support this claim? If I had to cleanup this site and I was asking for variances, that would have been one my primary arguments for the variances – “I need to pack in more people so I can pay for the cleanup while still satisfying my investors and making some profit for myself”.

    In any case, there is no reason to take the first thing that comes along. The way the market works is that eventually the price of the land would come down to the point that a developer could make a profit while conforming to zoning and neighborhood plans. I’d gamble that it wouldn’t take another 15 years.

    If someone can show me some documentation, I will retract my “floated as a rumor” comment and just ask incredulously, “Why didn’t the developer just put it in his BZA application”.

    #995326
    Snarf
    Snarf
    Participant

    I think it’s important to stress the fact that a woman cried.

    A woman cried.

    #995327

    heresthecasey
    Participant

    Nah, it’s confusing; when it was a parking garage downtown it was all about following community standards. Here, it’s about getting a variance from same. You seem to be saying that, for you at least, the upside outweighs the lack of retail.

    If your point is basically that different situations and individual circumstances impact the relative appropriateness of certain actions, and can sometimes warrant a varied response from established guidelines, we’re in agreement.

    #995330
    rus
    rus
    Participant

    If your point is basically that different situations and individual circumstances impact the relative appropriateness of certain actions, and can sometimes warrant a varied response from established guidelines, we’re in agreement.

    No, not really.

    The last time something like this came up it was all about the community setting standards for development. Here, standards were set and a variance was sought and granted.

    Seems more like you want what you want and the rest is just details. Idealism as a cloak for self interest.

    Which is fine, as far as that goes. Gods know self interest governs all.

    #995476
    Stephen43215
    Stephen43215
    Participant

    From the Dispatch it said the developer met with people before the meeting and the buildings will be much shorter in height. Any new renderings of this project?

    #995494

    c_odden
    Participant

    Urban infill (+)<br>
    Added residents/density (+)<br>
    Redevelopment of vacant lot (+)<br>
    Environmental cleanup of existing brownfield site (+)<br>
    Private investment/new constuction in an area primed for it (+)<br>
    Increase in diversity of neighborhood housing options (+)<br>
    Adequate on-site parking provision (+)<br>
    Appropriate urban design, built to the lot line along Parsons, entry to units directly from the street (+)<br>
    Additional residents to support existing walkable amenities/transit/retail (+)

    OK. Can you explain why the project-as-proposed was the only way to achieve those alleged benefits? Those are all fine things, but it was never an all-or-nothing deal. Developers take what they can get, there are books (good ones) on getting gatekeepers to bend and give you things that no private citizen could achieve, and one of the strategies is to frame everything as if it’s “my way or that stays a dirt lot forever.”

    #995498

    c_odden
    Participant

    After hundreds of hours are spent by City employees and concerned citizens of our neighborhoods to compile development standards, we are led to believe that these documents will be followed in good faith when a developer wishes to build something that does not conform to them.

    This is the rub: fortune favors the bold, there’s no reason to believe that the bold have community interests at heart, and public-servant gatekeepers are, ostensibly, employed to preserve justice, not grant favors. To paraphrase a great passage from Dwight Merriam, “90% of variances granted are illegal. It’s just that nobody cares enough, or has the power, to sue.”

    #995557

    Coy
    Participant

    From the Dispatch it said the developer met with people before the meeting and the buildings will be much shorter in height. Any new renderings of this project?

    Regardless of the new renderings, the density variance that was passed was a reduction from 2500sqft per residence to 1200sqft. The developer has said that he plans on responding to neighborhood concerns by reducing the number of units planned from 40 to 34. However, the variance passed would still allow for 40 if he wants and no one would be able to say/do a thing. It will remain to be seen what is actually done.
    If the deal for the developer to buy the property falls through, the density variance also stays with the land now.

    Side note: thanks for the link to that Merriam book.. already ordered.

    #995573
    Walker Evans
    Walker Evans
    Keymaster

    The last time something like this came up it was all about the community setting standards for development. Here, standards were set and a variance was sought and granted.

    Are you referring to something specific heresthecasey said previously, or jumping from person to person where comparing opinions of others? You also said on the last page that something citywalker said was a double-standard due to another topic, but I don’t think they’ve posted in any topic other than this one.

    #996159
    rus
    rus
    Participant

    <div class=”d4p-bbt-quote-title”>rus wrote:</div>
    The last time something like this came up it was all about the community setting standards for development. Here, standards were set and a variance was sought and granted.

    Are you referring to something specific heresthecasey said previously, or jumping from person to person where comparing opinions of others? You also said on the last page that something citywalker said was a double-standard due to another topic, but I don’t think they’ve posted in any topic other than this one.

    Wasn’t about citywalker, but the downtown parking garage thread.

Viewing 15 posts - 91 through 105 (of 140 total)

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