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  #5321  
Old Posted Jan 21, 2015, 12:49 PM
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Went on a little bike ride and snapped a few progress pics for y'all, because boredom.

K street, facing former DTP East Entrance.
The Kay



The Park Moderns/Garden Park
The Bridge District, West Sacramento









The Rivermark
The Bridge District, West Sacramento





Cannery Place
Township9, The River District




16 Powerhouse
Midtown, Sacramento



That building across R15/Ace of Spades
R Street Corridor



WAL
R Street Corridor



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  #5322  
Old Posted Jan 21, 2015, 4:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by downtownserg89 View Post
Went on a little bike ride and snapped a few progress pics for y'all, because boredom.

K street, facing former DTP East Entrance.
The Kay



The Park Moderns/Garden Park
The Bridge District, West Sacramento









The Rivermark
The Bridge District, West Sacramento





Cannery Place
Township9, The River District




16 Powerhouse
Midtown, Sacramento



That building across R15/Ace of Spades
R Street Corridor



WAL
R Street Corridor



Awesome, Serg. Keep 'em comin'!
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  #5323  
Old Posted Jan 21, 2015, 4:35 PM
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Thank you, this is one of the best photo updates in this thread in a long time.
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  #5324  
Old Posted Jan 21, 2015, 4:53 PM
Mr. Ozo Mr. Ozo is offline
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Mercury Cleaners across the alley from Simon’s on 16th Street is demolished and gone. Combined with what was a parking lot next door you have another half block pad on 16th making an obvious spot for another mid-rise. CADA is making plans to develop the site after cleanup is done.
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  #5325  
Old Posted Jan 21, 2015, 5:25 PM
CAGeoNerd CAGeoNerd is offline
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Looks like a lot of the businesses are opening up shop in the buildings at 16th and O soon, and the apartments at 16th and N are under construction now, and 16th and P is almost ready. What a different corridor those few blocks are now from a couple of years ago.
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  #5326  
Old Posted Jan 21, 2015, 6:24 PM
Pistola916 Pistola916 is online now
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Originally Posted by Mr. Ozo View Post
Mercury Cleaners across the alley from Simon’s on 16th Street is demolished and gone. Combined with what was a parking lot next door you have another half block pad on 16th making an obvious spot for another mid-rise. CADA is making plans to develop the site after cleanup is done.
Let's hope CADA proposes a striking design. If its anything like the Eviva\ formerly The Warren, why bother? CADA has done some great things but when it comes to midrises, its either tacky or cheap.
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  #5327  
Old Posted Jan 21, 2015, 7:26 PM
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I'm wondering where are all the proposals? The grid is RIPE for more development but not much is being purposed?
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  #5328  
Old Posted Jan 21, 2015, 11:32 PM
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The Park Moderns is a stunning project. Really surprised to see something like that in West Sacramento. Anyone seen the interiors of these?
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  #5329  
Old Posted Jan 22, 2015, 12:26 AM
CAGeoNerd CAGeoNerd is offline
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The Park Moderns is a stunning project. Really surprised to see something like that in West Sacramento. Anyone seen the interiors of these?
I know the mayor of West Sac bought one to move into so they must be pretty nice!
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  #5330  
Old Posted Jan 22, 2015, 5:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Majin View Post
I'm wondering where are all the proposals? The grid is RIPE for more development but not much is being purposed?
Hmmmm...I thought the arena would change everything...



Relax, it's a joke.


Larger projects have to overcome multiple barriers. Sacramento presents developers with quite a few of them, as it is not the richest of communities. Of course, when busy body preservationists throw one more in the way, it doesn't help:

With historic designation, Sacramento Commons project get more complicated
Ben van der Meer
Staff Writer-Sacramento Business Journal

Jan 20, 2015, 1:30pm PST | UPDATED: Jan 20, 2015, 6:38pm PST

http://www.bizjournals.com/sacrament...o-commons.html

Quote:
Preservationists have won recognition on the National Register of Historic Places for a prominent downtown property — complicating a developer's plan for twin 25-story towers on the site.

Capitol Towers was developed more than 50 years ago on a parcel surrounded by N and P streets and 5th and 7th streets. Current owner Kennedy Wilson is proposing a redevelopment project called Sacramento Commons that encompasses most of that parcel and would involve demolition of currently occupied garden-style apartments facing 7th.

But Gretchen Steinberg of Sacramento Modern, a nonprofit group seeking to preserve modern art and modernist architecture, said the new designation adds a wrinkle to that plan...

I'm not concerned this will derail anything. What's to derail? I'm doubtful Sacramento has the market for such a large project anyway. However, it's still annoying.
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  #5331  
Old Posted Jan 22, 2015, 6:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snfenoc View Post
Hmmmm...I thought the arena would change everything...



Relax, it's a joke.


Larger projects have to overcome multiple barriers. Sacramento presents developers with quite a few of them, as it is not the richest of communities. Of course, when busy body preservationists throw one more in the way, it doesn't help:

With historic designation, Sacramento Commons project get more complicated
Ben van der Meer
Staff Writer-Sacramento Business Journal

Jan 20, 2015, 1:30pm PST | UPDATED: Jan 20, 2015, 6:38pm PST

http://www.bizjournals.com/sacrament...o-commons.html




I'm not concerned this will derail anything. What's to derail? I'm doubtful Sacramento has the market for such a large project anyway. However, it's still annoying.
What really? I don't even know what to say
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  #5332  
Old Posted Jan 22, 2015, 5:17 PM
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Originally Posted by enigma99a View Post
What really? I don't even know what to say
It is disheartening to have more obstacles. I appreciate what preservationists do but in this instance my understanding is that the more significant buildings would be kept and the open spaces would also be mostly preserved (albeit probably redesigned to some degree). I am still hopeful that this project gains traction and does get developed. It will be years and years out but provides a nice combo of highrise apartments AND condos in addition to some mid to low-rise projects. Regardless of the naysayers I think Sacramento is ripe for a significant housing project like this in the core--especially considering how many years away from occupancy it would be.
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  #5333  
Old Posted Jan 23, 2015, 12:59 AM
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Could someone explain to me what is so historic regarding that building. Thank you
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  #5334  
Old Posted Jan 23, 2015, 2:04 AM
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Originally Posted by urbanadvocate View Post
It is disheartening to have more obstacles. I appreciate what preservationists do but in this instance my understanding is that the more significant buildings would be kept and the open spaces would also be mostly preserved (albeit probably redesigned to some degree). I am still hopeful that this project gains traction and does get developed. It will be years and years out but provides a nice combo of highrise apartments AND condos in addition to some mid to low-rise projects. Regardless of the naysayers I think Sacramento is ripe for a significant housing project like this in the core--especially considering how many years away from occupancy it would be.
I don't consider myself a naysayer. I just think the proposed number of housing units, retail, etc. seems quite large for one development (it calls for more housing units than the Towers on Crapitol Mall for goodness sake). If the developer thinks it can move forward successfully, you get no argument. We have heard about large scale projects from confident developers before. I'll let history speak for itself. I will say that I think a phased development with parts that can be put off or abandoned (as long as there aren't any holes left in the ground) is a good idea.


Quote:
Could someone explain to me what is so historic regarding that building. Thank you
On Sacramento Modern's website, there is a page dedicated to Crapitol Towers.

http://sacmod.org/preservation/capit...mento-commons/

They have a nice little write up justifying their push for historic preservation.

Sac Mod considers Crapitol Towers to be a prime example of mid-century planning.
This is interesting to me. I don't think the individual buildings have particularly noteworthy architecture or attractiveness. They are a bit drab. In terms of mid-century modern style, they are nothing like the SMUD headquarters or the Sacramento Zoo entrance. As an overall plan, however, I can see that Crapitol Towers provides a nice, reasonably dense oasis within the city. Also, there seems to be a close knit community, which the residents love - you cannot discount that. To top it off, it's almost like living in a public park, with fountains, art and a nice tree canopy. I can see how one might argue for the whole complex's preservation. Having said that, I've always considered Crapitol Towers to be half-assed...almost like the original plan was for something much more dense, but the developers ran out of money. I would add that the garden units are decent, but seem like they belong in Greenhaven/Riverside, not in the middle of downtown. Additionally, increasing the density of those four blocks might help the grid achieve 58,000 residents...something a certain historian keeps talking about.

That's probably what the developer thinks too:
Crapitol Towers has a great location and it's a nice community, but it has the potential to support much more housing, commercial/retail and possibly entertainment. Kennedy Wilson sees an opportunity to make a lot of money, nothing wrong with that in America. It seems like profit motive is a notion that activists don't like to consider. Granted, Sac Mod does talk about the potential of receiving tax credits for rehabbing such a "historical" site as Crapitol Towers. Maybe Kennedy Wilson will decide to take the "free" money, lower its risk and do something smaller and less destructive to the original complex.

Sac Mod argues that Crapitol Towers functions just fine and does not require additional development (maybe some rehab). The group also states it would be a waste of resources to destroy the garden apartments for something new. So...we have an appeal to the "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" crowd and the "waste not, want not" environmentalists. Again, not bad arguments. My response is, "change happens."

Sac Mod notes there are other places within the city to build. That's true. There are plenty of sites that could support a development of that size. However, those other sites aren't part the equation. Kennedy Wilson owns/controls the Crapitol Towers site. It's easy to suggest alternatives, it's hard to actually purchase one, especially one with the location, size, history, etc. of Crapitol Towers.


One shouldn't be quick to completely dismiss preservationist groups. While I'm not a big fan of mid-century modern - it reminds me of my grandparents' mothball-scented house, and it's kind of a fad - this group has an argument. I still think the developer has a right to build what it thinks is best on a property it owns. However, maybe there is some middle ground.
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  #5335  
Old Posted Jan 23, 2015, 2:25 AM
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It may not look like much if your idea of "historic buildings" is limited to Victorian frills or ancient forts, but for advocates of Modern architecture, it's a masterwork of mid-century design. The central tower and low-rise buildings were designed by a dream team of master architects including Wurster Bernardi & Emmons and Edward Larrabee Barnes, the landscape design by Lawrence Halprin included mature Sacramento street trees carefully integrated into the design plan, public art and designed landscapes. Unlike most of downtown Sacramento's redevelopment, which stripped out population and replacing them with offices that went dead at 5 PM, this was designed as a compact, urban residential neighborhood that combined a relatively high residential density with a walkable, parklike setting. It won a bunch of awards for design and its designers considered Capitol Towers one of their great success stories.

The plan as proposed includes removal of all the low-rise buildings and all the landscaping, basically everything except the central tower. Except Kennedy Wilson isn't a developer, they are basically adding the entitlements to raise the value of the property and hoping to sell it to someone who might want to build to the newly entitled level in the next few decades. For an example of how that looks in the real world, take a look at the 1000 block of J Street between 10th and 11th. There are two fully entitled high-rise towers planned for that block, but no money to build them, so the two properties sit vacant except for rats, bats and taggers, as they have for decades, and may continue like that for decades more.

The sad part is that if a high-rise or mid-rise residential tower was planned for the parking lot across the street from Capitol Towers next to the Heilbron Mansion, it would be just the kind of thing to rally behind. And there are almost certainly ways to add more housing within the existing footprint of Capitol Towers--like building new housing on retail/parking podiums on the property's existing parking lots. But it seems kind of silly to demolish an existing, fully occupied and pretty successful housing development, on the hope that someone will build a higher density building on the same site sometime in the next few decades. If you take into account the other two towers on that superblock (500 N and Pioneer Tower) it's probably the most densely populated neighborhood in the city (aside from maybe the Main Jail.) Key point: If you're going to repopulate downtown, put it someplace where there aren't already people living downtown--and ideally not in a building that is already recognized as the work of a master. As a certain historian keeps going on about, I think we can double the population of the central city, but we don't have to knock down the existing neighborhood to do it! And knocking down the highest density neighborhood in the central city on spec is downright counterproductive.
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  #5336  
Old Posted Jan 23, 2015, 2:40 AM
CAGeoNerd CAGeoNerd is offline
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Originally Posted by Deno View Post
Could someone explain to me what is so historic regarding that building. Thank you
I think a building simply needs to be 50 years old to be considered "historic" - but there may be another hoop to jump through, not sure who designates it, some sort of state historic resources department probably recognizes places based on filed places, I'm assuming. It's quite a detriment to modern cities, since literally now any building older than 1965 can be "historic." It kind of defeats the purpose of recognizing historic places.
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  #5337  
Old Posted Jan 23, 2015, 2:56 AM
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Originally Posted by CAGeoNerd View Post
I think a building simply needs to be 50 years old to be considered "historic" - but there may be another hoop to jump through, not sure who designates it, some sort of state historic resources department probably recognizes places based on filed places, I'm assuming. It's quite a detriment to modern cities, since literally now any building older than 1965 can be "historic." It kind of defeats the purpose of recognizing historic places.
That explains it. Thanks!!! To bad the Alhambra theater wasn't there, then I could understand why it would need to be preserved. I guess we will preserve the old greyhound bus depot.
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  #5338  
Old Posted Jan 23, 2015, 3:36 AM
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Capitol Towers is a historic landmark now, huh? What's next? The Fremont Building? The Taco Bell on Broadway?

Great job, Burg.
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  #5339  
Old Posted Jan 23, 2015, 4:11 AM
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Originally Posted by wburg View Post
It may not look like much if your idea of "historic buildings" is limited to Victorian frills or ancient forts, but for advocates of Modern architecture, it's a masterwork of mid-century design. The central tower and low-rise buildings were designed by a dream team of master architects including Wurster Bernardi & Emmons and Edward Larrabee Barnes, the landscape design by Lawrence Halprin included mature Sacramento street trees carefully integrated into the design plan, public art and designed landscapes. Unlike most of downtown Sacramento's redevelopment, which stripped out population and replacing them with offices that went dead at 5 PM, this was designed as a compact, urban residential neighborhood that combined a relatively high residential density with a walkable, parklike setting. It won a bunch of awards for design and its designers considered Capitol Towers one of their great success stories.

The plan as proposed includes removal of all the low-rise buildings and all the landscaping, basically everything except the central tower. Except Kennedy Wilson isn't a developer, they are basically adding the entitlements to raise the value of the property and hoping to sell it to someone who might want to build to the newly entitled level in the next few decades. For an example of how that looks in the real world, take a look at the 1000 block of J Street between 10th and 11th. There are two fully entitled high-rise towers planned for that block, but no money to build them, so the two properties sit vacant except for rats, bats and taggers, as they have for decades, and may continue like that for decades more.

The sad part is that if a high-rise or mid-rise residential tower was planned for the parking lot across the street from Capitol Towers next to the Heilbron Mansion, it would be just the kind of thing to rally behind. And there are almost certainly ways to add more housing within the existing footprint of Capitol Towers--like building new housing on retail/parking podiums on the property's existing parking lots. But it seems kind of silly to demolish an existing, fully occupied and pretty successful housing development, on the hope that someone will build a higher density building on the same site sometime in the next few decades. If you take into account the other two towers on that superblock (500 N and Pioneer Tower) it's probably the most densely populated neighborhood in the city (aside from maybe the Main Jail.) Key point: If you're going to repopulate downtown, put it someplace where there aren't already people living downtown--and ideally not in a building that is already recognized as the work of a master. As a certain historian keeps going on about, I think we can double the population of the central city, but we don't have to knock down the existing neighborhood to do it! And knocking down the highest density neighborhood in the central city on spec is downright counterproductive.
The work of a master? Really??

Crapitol Towers is a nice community, but it isn't that good. However, I think you've reached the heart of my biggest issue... It's all hysterical, hyperbolic horseshit. It's a group of non-owners trying to control an owner, because they have an emotional attachment to trees, fountains and 92 units of ordinary, almost suburban, 1950s apartments. Of course, boiling it down to emotion doesn't fly well, so they have to make the subject seem bigger than it really is.


In terms of housing units:
If I knock down 100 and put up 101...I've just increased the density. Whether more, fewer or the same number of people reside at the property, who knows? It depends on price, quantity of rooms, etc. In this case, the owner wants approval to demolish far fewer units than it (or its successor) would build..far fewer. It's a sacrifice. Sacrifice is a good thing. Isn't 16 Powerhouse the former site of an apartment complex? Would you argue that it will add zero density to the grid? My understanding is that it is a net positive in terms of units and retail.



Having said all that..

So you are arguing the proposal is merely a scheme by Kennedy Wilson to drive up the property's value and have it sit, either partially empty or as a hole in the ground, for years, do I have that right? I wouldn't be surprised if it were true, as we have quite a few examples from the past and present. But what if it isn't true? "Somewhere else" is not a part of the equation. The owner has control of THIS property; and it's an attractive property, because it generates income and has potential to generate even more. A property without buildings probably doesn't provide a lot of rental income.

Is it possible for the city to entitle a property with existing buildings for new development BUT require those existing buildings to remain rented until financing is received? Just curious.

Part of me wants to consider the role of redevelopment: In the past it seems many property owners/developers were looking for "free" government money, and they were happy to wait for it, even if waiting resulted in slums or vacant buildings. I think redevelopment created a bit of a moral hazard. Currently, redevelopment doesn't exist in California, but you have to think it'll return in some form or another - there have been attempts. I wonder if this notion causes some property owners to still wait...
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Last edited by snfenoc; Jan 23, 2015 at 5:08 AM.
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  #5340  
Old Posted Jan 23, 2015, 6:07 AM
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If a property is entitled for development, there isn't much incentive for the owner to keep the building maintained, and no requirement to keep it rented. And yes, it did kind of become a business model during redevelopment, developers got very used to buying up distressed properties, letting them decay until they could convince the city they needed a big check to fix the problem. I suppose we'll have to agree to disagree about what constitutes a master architect, but the architecture school at UC Berkeley is named after the principal architect of Capitol Towers, so that's something. Yes, the design is simple and minimalist, but that's one of the hallmarks of mid-century modern architecture.

The idea that this was a "flip" wasn't my idea, it was put forth by David Nybo of the Planning Commission when the plan was reviewed there. But KW has made it clear that they are not a developer and the renderings they show are just theoretical examples--they are not designing the buildings and won't be building them, just preparing a PUD for some future developer to build from. Maybe, someday.

16 Powerhouse demolished a small, nondescript former motel that not even the most ardent preservationist would put up a fight to defend. It was demolished for a particular plan to build that was followed through on a tight timetable, by a developer who builds buildings, not a speculator hoping to increase the value of the lot on paper through zoning.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CAGeoNerd View Post
I think a building simply needs to be 50 years old to be considered "historic" - but there may be another hoop to jump through, not sure who designates it, some sort of state historic resources department probably recognizes places based on filed places, I'm assuming. It's quite a detriment to modern cities, since literally now any building older than 1965 can be "historic." It kind of defeats the purpose of recognizing historic places.
Just because a building is 50 years old doesn't make it automatically historic--but generally it has to be at least that old to qualify. Not every old building qualifies, not by a long shot.

Incidentally, the Alhambra Theatre wasn't 50 years old yet when it was demolished.
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