sonic

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About sonic

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    Toronto, Grand Rapids
  1. sonic

    Transit Updates for Greater Grand Rapids

    From what I can tell, these stations will be located on the edges of the street, rather than the center. That is disappointing, as I think it makes an eventual upgrade to light rail less likely.
  2. "For starters, I think they should ditch the "Celebration!" name and signage. Give the theater a classy name and move away from the look of existing Celebration! locations. The current name and signage is really tacky, IMO." I agree. On Harvard Square there is a Dunkin' Doughnuts where the branding is concealed and goes by the name "Eliot Street Cafe." I'm sure there are other examples, but it's the only one I can think of right now. Something similar would be nice for Celebration.. andrew.w points out that the rendering shows a sign that reads "MIDTOWN". On the subject of architects, I toured FTC&H headquarters as a high school student and have since then been generally underwhelmed by their work. Still, for this theater, I don't think we should hope for anything like the Chicago Public Library, though, like x99, I am also a fan. We already have world-class/innovative/interesting architecture (witness Vinoly's Van Andel Institute). We've half proven ourselves as a city. But we're not there quite yet. For a theater, making a "statement" should be the last of anyone's concern--if, and when, MSU decides to build on the former GRPress site, there is an opportunity to make a statement. But for a theater, some serious, urban, generic, architecture, like that seen on a wide scale in any major city, is what is needed. Nothing fancy, just plain urban (eg. the Chicago AMC discussed above). That, IMHO, is the opportunity to be seized. That, in itself, would be a statement. In a way, it would mean Grand Rapids taking itself slightly more seriously as a city. As for parking, I am not against on-site parking per se, but there is no reason parking should not/could not be somehow integrated into the building--there are plenty of local examples of that approach, i.e. the UICA, and 38 Commerce, so Loeks/the architects should be well aware of that option. Finally, to respond to Quercus' comment about the area between 131, the transit district, and Ionia-Oakes, I have always dreamed of something like this for GR: A great way of bridging/integrating urban spaces. This is John Street in Liverpool, but this type of street is seen in Hong Kong, Tokyo and I'm sure other places as well. Something like this would be a nice way of connecting the Van Andel Arena as it expands, to the theater, and environs.
  3. Yes! Yes! Yes! "Something like the AMC River East 21 in Chicago would be nice." Yep, or the Yonge and Dundas AMC in Toronto, or any of the theaters in Times Square in NYC. Question is, how can we exercise our collective muscle to help make something like that happen, rather than the "glass-and-metallish-crap-encased-suburbanesque-vomit-inducing stink bomb"?
  4. I would estimate about 20,000 sq ft per floor, since the space is triangular, and looks slightly larger than 200 ft on each side (though I could be wrong). So, sadly, that looks like only about 4 floors.
  5. sonic

    People talking about Grand Rapids

    FWIW We probably shouldn't feel too slighted. Surprisingly enough, I've met people (Americans and Canadians) who don't know where New York City is. I also met someone who went to NYC, and had no idea it is near the ocean.
  6. sonic

    People talking about Grand Rapids

    GR Press article about a feature in Men's Journal http://www.mlive.com...ice_things.html And, the feature itself: http://media.trb.com...20-08095336.pdf As the GR Press article points out, maybe the best part is that we're listed as Grand Rapids--not as Grand Rapids, Michigan.
  7. sonic

    Gallery on Fulton

    Not to get off topic but, seeing Two Fountain Place in your first pic made me remember my long held fantasy of seeing them build a Meijer in there.
  8. sonic

    Medical Mile/Michigan Street Developments

    ugh... that sucks. way to break with the style of the rest of the building, which even though its not the greatest, was nonethess at least uniform aside from the tower...
  9. sonic

    ArtPrize and Project 1 - Grand Rapids

    I don't think it's so much a question of what is art, but of basic aesthetics... some things are just ugly. And, those table and chairs imho fit the bill. Again, i'm just voicing an opinion, but they just looked *tacky* up there on the bridge.
  10. sonic

    Medical Mile/Michigan Street Developments

    I'm not a big fan of the waves, and would have preferred something more along the lines of what GRdad posted. I'll admit though that it could have been a lot worse. Does anyone know if that black section on the south side of the HDCH is still unfinished? It sure looks like it, but I haven't looked at it closely.
  11. sonic

    Gallery on Fulton

    yes, its too bad about the aluminum siding. I just had a look at John's April pics (thanks for those by the way, John), and I can only hope it ends up looking better when finished.
  12. sonic

    People talking about Grand Rapids

    I know AirTran coming to GR is not new news.... This was in USA today: http://www.usatoday.com/travel/flights/item.aspx?type=blog&ak=76575.blog
  13. sonic

    Transit Updates for Greater Grand Rapids

    Good points. The flyover idea for the beltline is a nice one. But at that point it's almost an expressway. I seem to remember in Virginia in particular many high capacity roads use a system like that. Of course it is probably in use elsewhere as well. I guess re-working the Beltline won't be high on the priority list, when all is said and done, there are many more pressing issues. Chicago drive, and 44th, as you mentioned are good corridors to eye for some sort of re-working. Perhaps it won't be roundabouts that are deemed most effective, they don't work in every situation. BTW, that famous diagram of the roundabout threw me for a huge loop when I saw it for the first time. Have you seen the actual picture of it? I found it via google images, and it looks almost exactly like the diagram. Good example of how the Brits can get out of hand with the roundabouts sometimes. I dont know how the roads are in that particular area, but something tells me that they could have worked out somthing a bit less complicated than that...
  14. sonic

    Transit Updates for Greater Grand Rapids

    Regarding the roundabouts on the Beltline, I disagree that they need to be on high-capacity corridors. In fact I would argue the opposite. Remember that the purpose of a roundabout is to keep most of the traffic on the road MOVING. With the stoplights that we have now, many vehicles are required to STOP, not once, but twice. A roundabout slows traffic, of course, but it keeps moving; this is also a safety feature, and is much more environmentally sound (starting from a dead stop is very inefficient.) They would be perfect at mid-capacity corridors like 3-mile and Knapp, and possibly Leonard; Also possibly Cascade Rd. I would think that 28th and Beltline might be the last place we could put one, it is the busiest intersection in the area (as far as I remember) and might not benefit that much from a roundabout. We might also consider those median openings on Chicago drive that M-dot was recently pegging for closure... Indeed.
  15. sonic

    Transit Updates for Greater Grand Rapids

    John, I know we have roundabouts that's why I mentioned the Beltline. In Britain there are roundabouts on many primary and secondary roads like the Beltline. Such roundabouts are much larger than those on Wealthy, of course, to accommodate the higher volume traffic and higher speeds. to get back to the topic. I agree with Grdad, the GR-Detroit hydrogen rail thing sounds ridiculous.