nite owℓ

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About nite owℓ

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    Whistle-Stop
  • Birthday 01/01/1982

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    Downtown Orlando

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  1. Amazon HQ #2 To Orlando?

    Very true. Hopefully we've learned something after the Sanford Burnham Prebys debacle...? lol
  2. Downtown Orlando Project Discussion

    BTW, the city diner is also included in the Travelodge sale (thankfully). That whole corner is about to clean up quite a bit.
  3. Downtown Orlando Project Discussion

    Too late, both the OS and OBJ have now reported on it . I'm sure journalists peruse our comments looking for the scoop on developments so it was only a matter of time. Per the OBJ; "Ponte Health currently is looking at building the project on the surface parking lot at 110 W. Jefferson St., according the city of Orlando. Nothing formal has been submitted to the city regarding the Vertical Medical City at this time, although the city has received two conceptual photos and an inquiry.Ponte said she also is looking at several other downtown sites and will need just 1.5 acres to build on, and she wants to close on a site within the next 90 days." Despite Ponte's uncertain capability of getting this done, I decided to post their press release since we really haven't had any over the top developments to look forward to after the Recession. A little excitement never hurt...
  4. The ABC turned out nicely with all the finishing touches. Does anyone know if the original building will be renovated to match the expansion?
  5. Downtown Orlando Project Discussion

    Came across this press release from Ponte Health... I'm not familiar enough with this company to discern the likelihood of this actually coming to fruition: PONTE HEALTH Brings VERTICAL MEDICAL CITY to Downtown Orlando to Serve the City's Elders "VERTICAL MEDICAL CITY, LLC, a new High Rise Development Project is coming to the core of Downtown Orlando. A striking self-sustaining, patient-focused, advanced technology-driven facility, it will be made of a three-tower complex partly overlaid with a smart photo/wind cells skin; the towers will work in synchronicity to deliver from Critical to Preventative Care throughout over 2 million square feet, and over 40 stories, of biophilic and interactive environments. The primary focus of the Facility is to bring into the urban core the Next Level Assisted Living, Care, and Wellness for Residents and Outpatients 60 and over. A major Health System has stepped forward with intent to Lease 1 of the 3 Towers, to manage and operate the Emergency and Surgical Operations of the Project. "
  6. Winter Park & Maitland

    And despite all of this I'm sure the starting price will be over $1M
  7. Agreed, it looks bare and unfinished along Rosalind Ave when not in use by events. I think the city doesn't add streetscaping to this side of Lake Eola since it would hinder such a high usage area. Temporary bleachers at least 10 rows high are installed along Rosalind for the Citrus Parade; Tents & bounce houses, etc get installed for misc festivals. I would love a makeover similar to Central Blvs, but I think any attempts to modify this stretch will take away from needed space to accommodate large crowds for major events.
  8. Amazon HQ #2 To Orlando?

    I'm not sure if I buy that "pool of qualified employees" excuse, because if that were truly the case, how does Amazon explain Nashville, TN making the shortlist? lol What city has that kind of workforce just lying around waiting to be hired? If anything, the workforce would be drawn to Amazon, but they would have to be willing to relocate and that's where a city's quality of life would come into play. But that comes at a higher pricetag. IMO, Amazon always had an ideal, but internal, shortlist of where the company wants to build it's HQ2. Amazon has the financial resources to scry the demographics of metro areas to determine which cities have more than a million residents; ease of transportation; a business-friendly environment; potential to attract and retain technical talent; and a strong university system "with relevant degrees". This whole dog and pony show was probably meant to lure out larger tax incentives from Amazon's internal shortlist under the guise of competitive proposals, but as a way to obtain best and final offers.
  9. Guess I'm tardy to the party. I took these pics yesterday but didn't have time to upload them. (Rosalind, Northbound):
  10. A while back I wrote to the city about Pedestrian Safety at crosswalks after repeatedly witnessing and being involved with near-miss pedestrian collisions. I tried to convince the city traffic engineer to implement a pedestrian-only window at all crosswalks downtown where people could safely cross without vehicle interference. Their compromise was to introduce a 4 second Leading Pedestrian Interval (LPI), but only at the intersection where I was nearly run over myself (at Washington & Rosalind Ave) and not all intersections that I advocated for. They claim LPI's have already been implemented downtown (few and far between from what I've seen), but IMO they should be implemented at ALL intersections or at the very least all major traffic intersections. Earlier this year, an elderly woman who was a volunteer at the downtown library was killed while crossing Central Blvd in the pedestrian crosswalk. I wrote to the Sentinel to ask them to try to put the screws to the City to ensure adequate remedial actions are taken, but to my knowledge nothing has been done there. At Central & Rosalind the power-struggle between pedestrians & vehicles to enter the crosswalk during the pedestrian signal is extremely dangerous. Same with Rosalind & Robinson, Robinson & Orange, Robinson & Summerlin, etc. The City wants us to Live, Work and Play downtown, but they aren't doing much to ensure the safety of added pedestrians lured downtown by brand new apartment projects. With the construction of Modera, Tremont and potentially Cambria Suites in the pipeline I think additional LPI's should be implemented before more pedestrians hit the streets. Better to be safe than sorry. What's the point of this topic? Well, I was wondering if there was anyone on UP with City contacts, a large audience, petition experience or even a diplomatic personality who would be willing to spearhead LPI implementation at all (or at least major) intersections in the downtown/CBD area. I would try to do this myself, but I really don't have patience in dealing with people over common sense issues, especially when trying to "convince" the City about something that should already be widely implemented. There's just no excuse for this negligence, the cost to alter existing signals is nominal and the impact is significant (LPI's reduce pedestrian-vehicle collisions as much as 60% at treated intersections). Orlando is already known as one of the most dangerous cities for pedestrians. LPI's really do work. The LPI at the Rosalind/Washington intersection now allows people to cross that intersection a little more safely especially in the dark at night (granted it's a measly 4 second head start to establish right of way in the crosswalk, but still). If you're curious about how LPI's work, I found some videos that explain their usefulness:
  11. Novel Lucerne [Under Construction]

    View from Kuhl Ave:
  12. Downtown Orlando Project Discussion

    Came across an interactive video of Toronto's Underpass Park: And Miami's Underline Park: I think our Under I4 park could potentially be a community asset. I see skateboarders & special events getting the most use out of a park like this. But cutting out the dog track would greatly reduce everyday pedestrian activity IMO.
  13. Some key points that I found interesting: Thomas Chatmon (head of DDB): Constitution Green will get a dog wash & lighting for 24/7 usage. The city will work with a property owner to put in an "interactive pocket park at the intersection of Orange & Robinson. It's going to have high caliber multimedia components to it... be very interactive." Magic Entertainment District will have a major hotel & convention center (to bolster 6-11pm pedestrian activity) Housing in Parramore to include mixed-income apartments. CRA will develop single family homes in Parramore Dominique Ryan (night manager): Safety: Nighttime economy committee (comprised of 28 groups which include bar owners, Condo/Management companies, OPD, city staff etc) "our relationship's right where it needs to be." Doug Metzger (City Planning/ARB): Under I-4 Project: The 9.5-acre urban park is expected to feature a soccer fields, basketball courts, crossfit facilities, ping pong tables, a splash pad, a playground, urban skate park, outdoor classroom spaces, indoor community rooms & staging for food trucks. (Per the OBJ, the dog track was removed from the original plan and replaced with "community rooms that people can rent out".)
  14. Irma

    Pretty much all the trees next to the VUE along Rosalind were cut down since they were badly damaged by Irma.
  15. Amazon HQ #2 To Orlando?

    On the flip side, I don't understand this dog and pony show Amazon is putting cities through. Based on what I've heard about Jeff Bezos, I'm pretty sure he already has a city in mind. So what is Amazon really looking for? I found a great column in the LA Times titled "Memo to civic leaders: Don't sell out your cities for Amazon's new headquarters" which highlighted my suspicions: 1) "We acknowledge a Project of this magnitude may require special incentive legislation ... for the state/province to achieve a competitive incentive proposal." -Amazon 2) " Amazon says it’s looking to build on a vacant location served by good transportation and educational infrastructure. But those things don’t normally preexist together in a pristine state. They either emerge organically and symbiotically, or they’re forced into existence. The first process takes time, and the second takes money, and lots of it. Yet Amazon doesn’t want to wait, and it doesn’t want to spend. Its RFP requires communities to submit their responses by Oct. 19, with construction to start in 2019. The company encourages states and localities to “think creatively” about real estate options, but cautions that these creative solutions can’t “negatively affect … our preferred timeline.” "