U.S. Bank Plaza plans start to take shape
By: Marino Eccher, INFORUM
Published April 06, 2012, 11:30 PM http://www.inforum.com/event/article/id/356722/
FARGO – The end product is still in flux – not to mention a secret – but Kilbourne Group is starting to put pencil to paper on developing downtown’s U.S. Bank Plaza.
Mike Allmendinger, Kilbourne’s general manager, said the group is hiring a design team and talking to potential anchor tenants for what would be its largest undertaking to date: the chance to reshape an entire city block in one fell swoop.
What exactly they’re designing remains up in the air. The schematics are “changing every week” based on conversations with potential clients, Allmendinger said.
“It’s changing based on the interest of the tenants,” he said. “That’s evolving all the time.”
Kilbourne Group won’t name possible tenants until deals are finalized. But Allmendinger said he expects the final project to include public spaces, ground-floor retail, and office space on the upper floors.
“We see it as a true mixed-used building,” he said. “It’ll fill the missing gap in downtown Fargo.”
The 48,000-square foot space now houses the bank, a pedestrian mall and a parking lot. Kilbourne Group holds the right to purchase and develop the land from the bank.
That deal expires in June, though Allmendinger said that’s not necessarily a cutoff date.
“It’s not a deadline,” he said, and there is no timetable for a completed plan. “I think the stakeholders still want the project to happen.”
In December 2010, Kilbourne Group held a design contest for the plaza. The nonbinding results were more conceptual than actionable – winning proposals included flourishes like grassy rooftop slopes and a miniature river snaking through the plaza – but Allmendinger said it was an important conversation-starter.
“I think that the dialogue that was created by the community has been the most valuable information,” he said. “There are components of that from that design contest that created a dialogue about what’s important to the community.”