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  #1  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2009, 1:27 AM
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Migs Migs is offline
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'Capital Pointe' hotel/condo's in downtown Regina!

A project of this magnitude deserves a thread of its own. I think this is just the first of many great projects for Regina's downtown, add to this the new stadium, the downtown plan, the central library revitilization, Victoria Park revitilization, and the proposed office towers means nothing but great things ahead for downtown Regina!!!



Quote:
New hotel/condo complex to replace Plains in Regina


By Joe Couture, Leader-PostAugust 11, 2009 7:30 PMBe the first to post a comment

Neon sign atop the Plains Hotel in Regina
Photograph by: Bryan Schlosser, Leader-Post files

REGINA — If plans proceed, the corner of Albert Street and Victoria Avenue — currently occupied by the Plains Hotel — soon will be dramatically different.

Public documents filed with the City of Regina outline an out-of-province developer's intentions to demolish the existing hotel to make room for an eight-storey hotel and a 19-storey condominium tower complex.

The development is the first to be conceived with consideration to the city's proposed new downtown neighbourhood plan.

Westgate Plaza would feature retail and patio space at street level, "green" roofs and a double row of trees along both Albert Street and Victoria Avenue. In a nod to heritage, the Plains Hotel weather tower would be incorporated.

"It's going to be very different," said Mayor Pat Fiacco on Tuesday. "It's important to note that the developer liked the fact that Regina has a downtown neighbourhood plan. I think that speaks volumes. This is the very first one coming forward and I expect we're going to see more development. It's very exciting."

The downtown neighbourhood plan, revealed to the public in May, will go before council on Sept. 25 for endorsement, Fiacco said.

Fred Searle, senior planner in the city's planning and sustainability department, noted that the Westgate Plaza proposal addresses numerous aspects of the downtown plan.

The streetscapes surrounding the new development would be revised and the condominium presence would bring people to live in the area, one key plan point.

The development is subject to a discretionary-use application because of floor-area ratio and height restrictions. The proposal will require city council's stamp of approval, following a technical and public review process and reports to the city's planning commission and council itself. The project might go before council as early as September, Searle said.

An architect with Burlington, Ont.-based Chamberlain Architect Services, which represents developer Westgate Developments on the Westgate Plaza project, noted that if council gives approval this fall, work could begin next year.

"We're excited to be working on it," said Jeremiah Edmonds, referring to the downtown plan. "It's nice to be able to work within guidelines. The project meets the requirements of the plan and we definitely spent some time to develop our project in that direction. We're excited we're the first to be a part of it."

Edmonds said the developer wants to be "on the cutting edge" of growth in Regina.

"I think one of the things our client is looking at is Regina definitely needs the hotel space in its downtown core," he said, noting the hotel would be a Hampton Inn brand of the Hilton chain and would feature one full floor of meeting space. "Regina hasn't seen any new condo development like this in quite a while, so it's a good time. Pairing the two products together . . . one can help move the other."

The ground level of area would feature retail space, but tenants haven't yet been announced. The hotel restaurant would have patios facing Albert Street.

With extensive lighting and wider sidewalk spaces as desired in the downtown plan, the corner is also expected to become a safer space, Edmonds said.

The top floors of the condominium building would have great views and might be branded as luxury units, while lower floors might be marketed as more cost-conscious alternatives. There would be more than 100 units at about 1,000 square feet each.

Joseph Pettick, an architect who designed more than 200 buildings in Regina over half a century including city hall, the SGI building, the SaskPower building, the Bank of Montreal building and part of the Plains Hotel, is enthused about the proposal.

"I think it's wonderful to see that there's that much confidence in the future of Regina," he said, noting another component was to be built on the space in question roughly 40 years ago when the hotel was designed, but interest rates squelched that project at that time. "I'm looking forward to a lot more of that kind of news over the next few years."

Meanwhile, a famous Canadian artist who designed the Plains Hotel's signature weather tower, said that he was pleased the piece will be incorporated.

Ted Godwin recalled the weather tower was originally intended for the Wheat Pool building and would let people on farms to check up on the weather before deciding if they would leave the city. The tower ended up going to the Plains Hotel when the Wheat Pool building changed its mind, he noted.

"I'm delighted that they are going to incorporate it into the new (building)," Godwin commented.

Bill Brennan, a local historian who chairs Heritage Regina, teaches urban history at the University of Regina and wrote the city's standard history, noted that there isn't very much documented on the hotel.

"It's been a landmark on that corner for a long time," he said. "We haven't given much attention yet to the buildings that were constructed in our city after World War Two that ought to be considered as our heritage fabric. I don't know where the Plains hotel would fall into that pool."

He added that considering "the hopefully soon-to-be-adopted new Regina downtown plan" that "the new project ought to be regarded as a welcome addition. Surely it's a good thing in developers are prepared to risk their own money to build residential accommodation." He said such development that drives growth in the downtown core might build desire to preserve buildings of heritage importance.

Both realtor Dale Griesser and Regina Downtown Business Improvement District executive director Michael Huber noted earlier this week the importance of the downtown plan for future growth.

Though Fiacco noted the plan itself has taken time work its way through the system before final approval by council to ensure consultation, he added its principles are already being embraced by developers and the city, as evidenced by the Westgate Plaza proposal.

jcouture@leaderpost.canwest.com
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  #2  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2009, 1:52 AM
timewilltell timewilltell is offline
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[QUOTE=Migs;4401408]A project of this magnitude deserves a thread of its own. I think this is just the first of many great projects for Regina's downtown, add to this the new stadium, the downtown plan, the central library revitilization, Victoria Park revitilization, and the proposed office towers means nothing but great things ahead for downtown Regina!!!

[/QUOTE

Last edited by timewilltell; Mar 21, 2010 at 8:59 PM.
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  #3  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2009, 2:12 AM
H2O H2O is offline
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Not bad overall...

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Originally Posted by timewilltell View Post
its a long time coming
It would be nice to see the tower twice as tall, but that might not be realistic given the market in Regina. Although the economy is 'booming' in Regina terms, it takes pretty high land values to offset the cost of higher construction. I'm glad they are incorporating the weather tower, but I'd rather see it on top of the mid-rise element rather than in a niche as presented. It almost looks like they are keeping it on top of the existing building and adding floors on top of that, but I doubt the existing hotel has the structural capacity to add floors.

I'd also like to see them retain the glass enclosed staircase with the triangular (semi-geodesic) windows. I remember when...
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  #4  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2009, 4:03 AM
yeeg yeeg is offline
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Anyone care to speculate on pricing and size of the condos?
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  #5  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2009, 6:37 AM
BrannyMuffin BrannyMuffin is offline
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I don't care what they do with the Plains as long as they save that weather tower! I love that thing!

I still laugh when I see the sign for their sushi restaraunt-kinda screams food poisoning to me!

Quote:
Originally Posted by yeeg View Post
Anyone care to speculate on pricing and size of the condos?
No actual prices or sizes, but the article does say this:

Quote:
The top floors of the condominium building would have great views and might be branded as luxury units, while lower floors might be marketed as more cost-conscious alternatives. There would be more than 100 units at about 1,000 square feet each.
I guess it depends on their idea of "cost-conscious".
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  #6  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2009, 1:36 PM
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Only The Lonely.. Only The Lonely.. is offline
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Looks great!
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WINNIPEG: Home of Canada's first skyscraper!
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  #7  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2009, 1:51 PM
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darthrider darthrider is offline
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It looks fantastic, I can't wait to see the wrecking ball move in and take care of the Plains. It is great that they plan on saving that neon weather tower. Migs do you have any pictures of the Plains on your blog?
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  #8  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2009, 4:54 PM
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Migs Migs is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darthrider View Post
It looks fantastic, I can't wait to see the wrecking ball move in and take care of the Plains. It is great that they plan on saving that neon weather tower. Migs do you have any pictures of the Plains on your blog?
Just a couple I think. Its such an eyesore that its pretty rare I find it worth photographing.

http://reginainpictures.blogspot.com...-50-years.html

http://reginainpictures.blogspot.com...corner-of.html
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  #9  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2009, 8:32 PM
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A4Regina A4Regina is offline
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anyone know if this could make a dent in our skyline? Im thinking it will
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  #10  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2009, 9:01 PM
yeeg yeeg is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A4Regina View Post
anyone know if this could make a dent in our skyline? Im thinking it will
I would guess it depends which way you are coming in from. I think I counted 19 floors?
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  #11  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2009, 9:15 PM
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Scruff Bucket Scruff Bucket is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A4Regina View Post
anyone know if this could make a dent in our skyline? Im thinking it will
Well, I was hoping it would make a bump out from our skyline ...

This is great news! I hope more projects like this come about to increase the population density of downtown and surrounding area enough to make possible amenities like a local supermarket, indoor farmers market, entertainment, etc.! Those would be value added to downtown to attract even more residents, business clients, tourists, etc.!

Quote:
Originally Posted by BrannyMuffin View Post
I still laugh when I see the sign for their sushi restaraunt-kinda screams food poisoning to me!
Yaa ... Some of the older buildings have cockroaches in them, like the one my wife's sister lived in downtown (it's even a nice, higher-end, apartment suites building! The suite she was living in was provided to her by her company, over several years!) before her company moved her back to T.O. Not an infestation, but a few occasional, sporadic encounters. (Boy! Those things can move fast! ) That idea scares my wife, who formerly dormed at U of T, downtown, and had similar experiences, as is so common in certain places of T.O. and almost any other established neighbourhoods -- so we steer clear! Mind you, that restaurant seems like a popular place with some younger set of people (my nephew and his highschool buddies)! I hope I didn't fill you young'n's minds with too much info!

Last edited by Scruff Bucket; Aug 12, 2009 at 10:00 PM.
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  #12  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2009, 12:46 AM
timewilltell timewilltell is offline
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[QUOTE=A4Regina;4402628]anyone know if this could make a dent in our skyline? Im thinking it will[/QUO

Last edited by timewilltell; Mar 21, 2010 at 8:59 PM.
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  #13  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2009, 1:40 AM
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A4Regina A4Regina is offline
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Here's a new article from the leader post.
Quote:
Regina-based Westgate Development to head Plains Hotel project
By Joe Couture, Leader-PostAugust 12, 2009 8:34 PM
REGINA — While the architectural firm working on plans to redevelop the Plains Hotel is Ontario-based, the developers behind the project are headquartered in Regina.

Westgate Development is a Regina-based firm that has owned the Plains Hotel property, including the on-site Sushi Bank eatery and Good Time Charlie's Pub, for the last four years, noted financing director Regina Kim on Wednesday.

"The development company is a local company," she said, adding her father, Yosup, is the owner. He has spent 12 years in the hospitality industry and has owned hotels in Edmonton and Estevan.

But the proposed building of an eight-storey hotel and 19-storey condominium tower on the site now occupied by the Plains Hotel will be the first major development effort to be undertaken by the corporation, formed for that purpose.

"This is going to be our first project," Kim said, noting the firm has plans for future projects in Regina, as well.

"We're very optimistic about the Regina economy right now," she stated.

She pointed out that in major cities like Toronto and Vancouver, individuals purchase condominiums as investments. With the City of Regina's proposed downtown neighbourhood plan entitled "Walk to Work" seeking to increase residency downtown, Kim noted a condominium complex would give people options to invest in real estate in a downtown with a renewed population.

"The city has implemented programs to bring more people to live in the downtown, just like the bigger cities," she said. "They're planning to urbanize. Downtown Regina is going to be a lot different five years from now. In the bigger cities, they have a lot of people living in condominiums downtown."

Kim encouraged investors small and large to look at Regina's downtown.

"We implemented this project believing it will bring a lot of value to Regina citizens in terms of investments," she explained. "People should invest."

Of the Plains hotel site, Kim said her "father had the vision to convert this property into a newly developed (hotel and condominium complex) when he purchased (it) four years ago." The timing worked out well with the city's proposed downtown neighbourhood plan, which lists guidelines for developers in the downtown — the company's proposed design is the first to embrace the plan's ideas.

Contrary to earlier indications, the hotel proposed for the site is a Hilton Garden Inn, not a Hampton Inn, Kim said. Though both are brands of the Hilton hotel company, Hilton Garden Inns are more upscale and provide full-service for business and leisure travellers, which is what the developers wanted to achieve, she added.

Though Westgate Development is still studying its target markets, Kim said indications are units in the condominium tower would be of the luxury nature.

Overall, the busy intersection at Albert Street and Victoria Avenue would be dramatically changed, she noted. Council is expected to consider the firm's proposal for the corner as early as next month, if everything goes as planned.

"We're so excited about this," said Kim. She acknowledged that the corner as it currently exists doesn't have the highest reputation in terms of safety. "It's going to be attractive. It's going to be newer. It's going to be a safe place."

jcouture@leaderpost.canwest.com

© Copyright (c) The Regina Leader-Post
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  #14  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2009, 2:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrannyMuffin View Post
I don't care what they do with the Plains as long as they save that weather tower! I love that thing!

I still laugh when I see the sign for their sushi restaraunt-kinda screams food poisoning to me!


.
I recently went to a party and they had take out from the Sushi Bank and it was awesome. Super-fresh and well presented.
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  #15  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2009, 5:53 AM
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Heres a question kind of related to this project...knowing that there is supposedly a credit crunch right now globally, could a credit union finance a project of this magnitude? Or any major office tower that could take shape in our city?
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  #16  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2009, 1:54 PM
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Originally Posted by J_M_A View Post
Heres a question kind of related to this project...knowing that there is supposedly a credit crunch right now globally, could a credit union finance a project of this magnitude? Or any major office tower that could take shape in our city?
Unlikely, but it might be possible for them to syndicate the loan (i.e. split it among other credit unions or lenders). Most credit unions will not lend more than $15 million to a single client without syndication. THe hotel and condos are likely to be financed separately.
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  #17  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2009, 6:22 PM
VANRIDERFAN VANRIDERFAN is online now
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I guess some folks aren't not too supportive of new stuff.

http://prairiedogmag.blogspot.com/20...f-i-tried.html
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  #18  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2009, 6:57 PM
timewilltell timewilltell is offline
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a local developer

Last edited by timewilltell; Mar 21, 2010 at 9:01 PM.
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Old Posted Aug 13, 2009, 7:19 PM
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Originally Posted by VANRIDERFAN View Post
I guess some folks aren't not too supportive of new stuff.

http://prairiedogmag.blogspot.com/20...f-i-tried.html
Surprise surprise. Some on Riderfans.com already predicted this would happen.
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  #20  
Old Posted Aug 14, 2009, 10:18 PM
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http://www.newstalk980.com/story/20090814/20930

Quote:
Downtown Regina Hotel/Condo Could Be Built By End of 2011
Owners Plan to Close Plains at End of This Year


> Change Coming To Regina's Skyline
Posted August 14, 2009 - 3:16pm
It's a project being described as a "dream come true" for the man who owns the Plains Hotel.

"His goal is having a major brand hotel," says Joon Kim of Westgate Developments, whose father owns the Plains property at Albert Street and Victoria Avenue. Westgate Plaza, slated to replace the Plains, will feature an eight story hotel that Kim says will likely be a Hilton Garden Inn, as well as a 19-story condo tower.

The city says the project could go before the planning commission next month. Kim says condo units could be available for sale by the end of September. He thinks there's a market for what they're proposing.

"Pretty much all the condominiums in the downtown area in Regina are conversions of older buildings," he says, as opposed to the higher-end suites being proposed. "I feel really confident that we're going to be successful."

Kim says the plan is for the Plains to close at the end of the year with a New Year's bash. After that, he hopes demolition can begin in March, with a completion date for the project of the end of 2011.
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