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  #61  
Old Posted Apr 6, 2008, 12:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by METALMiKE View Post
Where did you hear that?
At the last River North meeting a couple of months back at Providence High School.
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  #62  
Old Posted Apr 6, 2008, 12:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trae View Post
What model is that? Those red Portland streetcars?
Portland


Seattle



This is a rendering of (eventual) Avenue B in River North.
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  #63  
Old Posted Apr 6, 2008, 1:31 AM
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I see. Hopefully it all goes through. Reminds me of Uptown Dallas with the trolley.
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  #64  
Old Posted Apr 7, 2008, 3:03 AM
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This one could work-- especially if they avoid running it up Broadway-- sticking to local service would be perfect.
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  #65  
Old Posted Apr 12, 2008, 6:47 AM
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I read the docs on the website-- they're working fast on putting in the Trolley and the dislike the developers have for VIA is very VERY apparent. They even say "streetcar" -- not even letting themselves use VIA's terminology.

I love this development SO MUCH.
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  #66  
Old Posted Apr 12, 2008, 5:01 PM
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River extension project to feature fairy tale come true

Web Posted: 04/11/2008 11:39 PM CDT
email]dgoddard@express-news.net[/email]
http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/met...2.3ad4189.html

Dan R. Goddard
Express-News

Designed to look like the setting for a romantic fairy tale, a cavelike grotto is planned for a bend along the upper reach of the San Antonio River.

Carlos Cortés, San Antonio's master of concrete faux bois — or false wood — style, has been commissioned to create the $3 million project for the Museum Reach of the San Antonio River Improvements Project.

The grotto — which will feature waterfalls and realistic-looking stalactites and stalagmites molded and carved in concrete, as well as benches and walkways — is being funded by the San Antonio River Foundation, which unveiled the plans this week. It will be located in a bend of the river where Camden and Newell streets intersect a few blocks north of the San Antonio Museum of Art.

"This will be my biggest project so far," Cortés said "I'll probably add some follies, too, which I haven't decided on yet. I may have some shell work and mosaic murals. Basically, I've been studying cave formations and the old grottos of Europe and Latin America looking for ideas. Once I start working on a project, I like to be able to improvise."

Construction isn't scheduled to begin until the fall, and Cortés said it probably would take him between 12 and 14 months to finish the project.

"We expect this to be one of the nicest and most popular amenities along the urban segment of the Museum Reach. ... The grotto is likely to be one of our biggest projects," said Kim Abernethy, River Foundation deputy director.
EN Multimedia
• Learn more about the River Vision project

The foundation is working to raise $50 million from private sources for enhancements to the river improvements project.

Overall, the $250 million public/private project is designed to create a linear park extending from the Acequia Madre near Hildebrand Avenue to Mission Espada near Loop 410 South. The urban segment of the Museum Reach, which includes the grotto, extends the River Walk from Lexington Avenue to Josephine Street.

Cortés, who built the H-E-B Science Treehouse at the Witte Museum, is carrying on a family tradition started by his uncle, Dionisio Rodriguez, who built the bus stop resembling a palapa, or thatched-roof hut, in Alamo Heights in the 1920s.

Following in his uncle's footsteps, Cortés in 2004 built the palapa-style bus stop at South Presa Street and Callaghan Avenue in Southtown.

Currently, he's working on a palapa-style pavilion for the Hannah Landa Memorial Library that is scheduled to be unveiled May 1. With a roof of what looks like palm fronds held up by what appears to be a small grove of oak trees, the 30-by-15 foot concrete structure is designed to be used as an outdoor stage and meeting area.

"His work is simply beautiful, and we expect this pavilion will be a destination for people to see because it is such a wonderful example of Carlos' work," said Monte Vista resident Ann Van Pelt, who has worked on the project for the Landa Gardens Conservancy.

Cortés also plans to build a palapa-style overlook across the river from the grotto. The grotto will be about 120 feet wide and about 30 feet deep. Stairs will lead down into the grotto from street level, and a river-level path will wind through the faux cave.

Beginning late this summer, the city will dig into the riverbank and build a retaining wall and foundation for the grotto, which Cortés then will mold and carve with the help of a small crew of expert concrete workers. He said some of the cave features, such as the stalactites and stalagmites, would be fashioned at his outdoor workshop and studio in Southtown.

"Mostly, we'll be working to make the concrete look like the inside of a cave, but there probably will be tree roots growing through it and the benches will look like wood," he said. "While this grotto won't be a Catholic grotto, I hope that it will give people a spiritual feeling."
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  #67  
Old Posted Apr 13, 2008, 12:40 AM
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^^^ Sounds really cool.
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  #68  
Old Posted Apr 16, 2008, 11:21 PM
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Unfinished project seeking a new start

Creighton A. Welch
Express-News Business Writer

It's hard not to notice the hulking, half-finished red brick, concrete and steel structures on Broadway. Their boarded windows loom over the street and jut high enough to catch the eye of drivers on the Interstate 35/Interstate 37 exchange.
The complex, once called the Villaje del Rio, with development begun by George Geis, has sat vacant since 2004.

But a meeting today could clear the way for work to begin again at the site. New plans are being presented to San Antonio's Historic and Design Review Commission for the mixed-use project of apartments and offices, now called 1221 Broadway.

If approved, 1221 Broadway would be the second project announced in a month as part of the River North redevelopment plan for the area just north of downtown.

At this point, any progress at the site would be welcome, the project's designer said.

"We're excited for the city to be able to change it," said Mickey Conrad, principal at OCO Architects Inc. and the lead architect of the project. "Every cab that comes from the airport to downtown drives by there and people go, 'What is that?'"

The new design maintains the original intent of the site with offices and apartments. But the new plans will add a fifth floor to the office building and a fifth floor to each of the 21 apartment buildings.

"We're essentially going to demolish the office building back down to the original concrete and start over with new walls and glass, overhangs and shadings," Conrad said. "We feel it's going to have kind of an upbeat look to it."

The structures long have sat as a kind of eyesore landmark in that part of town.

As reported in a 2006 San Antonio Express-News article, construction stopped in October 2004, and Geis sued his general contractor, claiming it had been overpaid by more than $2.5 million.

After Geis defaulted on the $26.7 million loan, lender Deutsche Bank Berkshire turned it over to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, which had insured the loan.

Geis sued HUD after it tried to put the incomplete project up for bids, claiming the government had wrongfully taken management of the 4.5-acre property.

But HUD sold the debt to Colina Del Rio LP, a San Antonio-based company, before Geis could get a court order to stop it. He filed for bankruptcy protection a day before Colina Del Rio was set to foreclose.

The Colina Del Rio partnership includes Ed Cross and David Adelman, president and vice president, respectively, of Cross & Co.

Adelman wouldn't discuss more details of the project because Geis and Colina Del Rio are still in litigation over the title claim for the site.

"We are excited about the prospect of getting the project going again and bringing it to completion," Adelman said.

It would be the second project announced as part of River North to revitalize the area into a dense, urban environment.

"It has been a visual blight so I think it says a lot about the whole impetus behind the need for residential development," said Ben Brewer, president of The Downtown Alliance. "I consider the fact that it's moving forward again a positive sign for downtown and the area we consider River North."

In early April, developer Tim Sanford revealed plans for a mixed-use project at St. Mary's and Ninth streets called Embarcadero that would include 24 condos, a Scouzzi Italian Grill and a 126-room hotel.

"The 1221 Broadway project is a key project of (River North) because it almost connects to the River Walk, and there's going to be a major pedestrian access point there," Conrad said. "The access these tenants are going to have to the river is going to add a lot of life not only from the street to the river, but the river to the street."

As part of the new plans, the office space will be in the building closest to Broadway, and the apartments are set back to the west, closer to the river.

There also will be a five-story parking structure. There will be 300 apartments and about 75,000 square feet of office space.

"We're talking a lot of living units," said Lisa Schmidt, a real estate agent with The Phyllis Browning Co. "Right now, that area does not have a product like that — new apartment living. Think about all of those folks who may want to live closer to where they work."

If the HDRC approves the design, which the commission staff recommends, Conrad said the office construction would begin in June and work on the apartments would begin in September.

"It's going to be neat for that corner of the city to come to life again," Schmidt said. "That will be a contribution for the city to go from what it's able to offer now to what it will be able to offer when it's finished."

Last edited by SAguy; Apr 17, 2008 at 12:39 AM.
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  #69  
Old Posted Apr 17, 2008, 2:10 AM
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Awesome, River North is coming alive!
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  #70  
Old Posted Apr 17, 2008, 4:01 AM
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Awesome, can't wait to see renderings.
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  #71  
Old Posted Apr 17, 2008, 5:03 AM
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That's the Broadway Lofts development I posted about a while back.

http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/showthread.php?t=143522
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  #72  
Old Posted Apr 17, 2008, 7:42 AM
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^^^ I thought so, and then I couldn't remember if you had or not, or if I was thinking of something else. It looks much more contemporary now.
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  #73  
Old Posted Apr 17, 2008, 8:14 PM
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  #74  
Old Posted Apr 17, 2008, 11:10 PM
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That Fine Arts District is what I'm going to be keeping my eye on (and to a lesser extent, the P.A.D.), because that more than anything could really change the character of SA's downtown and be a real bridge between DT and the Brackenridge/UIW area, which is probably the closest thing SA has to a "sophisticated" area, with the Witte, McNay, and "downtown" Alamo Heights all being there.
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  #75  
Old Posted Apr 17, 2008, 11:34 PM
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I love this project more and more by the day...sorry I have not been on for a while but I seem to keep having to find new places to steal the internet
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  #76  
Old Posted Apr 30, 2008, 4:46 AM
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Demolition at the cross project





Embarcadero condos


Last edited by Schertz1; Apr 30, 2008 at 4:56 AM.
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  #77  
Old Posted Apr 30, 2008, 5:06 AM
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^^^ Vidorra's looking nice from that last shot.
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  #78  
Old Posted Apr 30, 2008, 5:24 AM
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Woo hoo!! Let's keep it going, SA! I can't wait to be there this weekend!
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  #79  
Old Posted May 1, 2008, 12:06 PM
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City wants to take over River North planning

Web Posted: 05/01/2008 12:04 AM CDT

Greg Jefferson
Express-News

Facing suspicions that planning for River North has been tainted by insider dealings, City Manager Sheryl Sculley on Wednesday moved to take over the process and remove the not-for-profit organization that oversaw the plan’s creation from the picture altogether.

In a memo to the City Council on Wednesday, Sculley also recommended buying the draft plan from the Downtown San Antonio Community Development Corp., a nonprofit arm of the Downtown Alliance, a high-profile coalition of property owners.

“We’re not pointing fingers or saying there’s something wrong,” Deputy City Manager Pat DiGiovanni said. “We’re just trying to deal with the perception that the process is flawed.”

More than a year ago, the city allowed the Downtown San Antonio Community Development Corp. to take control of planning for River North’s redevelopment as a walkable neighborhood designed to make downtown living attractive again.

More recently, property owners have hounded the nonprofit and the city with complaints. Some felt left out, some worried about major zoning changes that the plan called for and some suspected certain insiders had tilted the process to their advantage.

A group called the River North Improvement Association was organized to oppose the plan. A representative of the group could not be reached for comment, but their concerns got the city’s attention.

“Frankly, we don’t see a role for the CDC in the planning process — during the public planning process that’s going to commence,” DiGiovanni said.

Ben Brewer III, president of the Downtown Alliance, sounded resigned to that move Wednesday night.

“Although we spent a year on the plan, the CDC is not a property owner in River North,” said Brewer, who’s also president of the nonprofit. “So it’s appropriate that the CDC take a backseat during the approval process.”

He added: “The bottom line is we want to see a plan put in place for the area — there’s tremendous opportunity for River North.”

River North is a 355-acre territory northeast of downtown, hemmed in by Interstates 35 and 37. The area’s got a few jewels — including the San Antonio Museum of Art — but much of it is rundown and under-utilized.

However, San Antonio River improvements, now under way between Lexington Avenue and Josephine Street, could spark a residential revival, potentially transforming River North into a neighborhood.

Much of the attention has focused on developer Ed Cross, who owns millions of dollars worth of River North real estate through a string of partnerships. He also sits on the CDC’s nine-member Master Plan Oversight Committee, which oversaw the hiring of a California planning firm — Moule & Polyzoides — and later served as a sounding board for its ideas.

In the draft plan, rolled out in public meetings in December and January, property that Cross and partners controls on two sides of Maverick Park and a nearby corner got a potentially lucrative designation that would allow for taller buildings, as did several parcels owned by others.

Cross has said he didn’t push planners to give favorable treatment to his property. He couldn’t be reached for comment Wednesday night.

Nearly a year ago, the CDC secured a line of credit from Broadway National BankÖ to pay for the plan, and so far has drawn between $550,000 and $600,000, Brewer said. The city would pay off that debt if the council agrees to Sculley’s recommendations, essentially establishing an up-front price for its more central role.

DiGiovanni said the city, in turn, could get reimbursed with tax increment financing that eventually will be available in River North.

City officials, he said, would use Moule & Polyzoides’ work as “a starting point.” He also said the city would separate the plan from controversial zoning changes proposed in the draft.
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  #80  
Old Posted May 1, 2008, 4:35 PM
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Say goodbye to smart planning and the rail line, then.
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