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Scott's Addition Development

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46 minutes ago, whw53 said:

The best thing the city can do for the BLVD is move forward with their land and get that RFP out ASAP. That will be the catalyst for density along here and change the land use economics for Greater Scotts Addition - otherwise the market will proceed with treating the Blvd here as just another exit along 95, which is what it is due to the city's ineptitude. Car wash user saw a nice site next to a WaWA in an otherwise  wasteland - can't blame them. 

Completely agree with this. The city has stumbled through what to do what this area for 20 years. You can thank that incompetence for a car wash at a city gateway. I also wasn't exactly expecting something grandiose going up next to the Wawa either. 

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1 hour ago, Brent114 said:

What a waste of water.

FYI, a typical modern automatic car wash is more water efficient than a home hand wash, and that is not even accounting for those with recycling systems.  They also better manage chemical runoff compared to home washing where it all goes into the drainage system.

While I am certainly not excited about this development (though I may use it), at least it is on a small lot directly adjacent to a loud interstate that would not be desirable for residential mixed use.  Better than in the middle of a high-potential corridor such as the old Car Pool.

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To flesh out my perspective here a bit more - What I'm trying to say is that I don't think the right course is to have the city take an aggressive role by denying permits based on the master plan concept especially when the underlying zonings and economics isn't there yet. And if I'm wrong  then the owners along here like Thalhimer who are hinting at mixed use  will reap the reward. It could be that this area is on the verge of transition so that continued industrial/ auto centric AND mixed use opportunities  are both smart land uses. But maybe not, all I know is the permit office doesn't know yet either. Denying a car wash isn't going to put up a mixed use building here necessarily  - the parcel would just remain vacant for some time.   I would be disturbed by any overturning of a use that is permitted, provides jobs, and has done everything correct in the land use process. 

It sounds odd but this same flexibility and divergence from plans is great in the long run and has been appreciated here - think of all the tall, dense projects that have had to go through SUP's because they don't conform to zoning, plans etc. Better to incentivize than to take such a heavy handed approach. Better to let the market take the lead on urbanization like it did for Scott's Addition \ Manchester then to try to compel it when it's not ready. See, I want the situation to be that a car wash is a bad use of the land here not just from an urbanist perspective but from a more complete market urbanist reality- but  for the car was operator and the land owner it must've made economic sense to move forward with this project now so i can respect that. One day soon the land values will be such that it will make economic sense to tear down that car wash and put up something taller and grander - but we are just not there yet.

Edited by whw53
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29 minutes ago, whw53 said:

To flesh out my perspective here a bit more - What I'm trying to say is that I don't think the right course is to have the city take an aggressive role by denying permits based on the master plan concept especially when the underlying zonings and economics isn't there yet. And if I'm wrong  then the owners along here like Thalhimer who are hinting at mixed use  will reap the reward. It could be that this area is on the verge of transition so that continued industrial/ auto centric AND mixed use opportunities  are both smart land uses. But maybe not, all I know is the permit office doesn't know yet either. Denying a car wash isn't going to put up a mixed use building here necessarily  - the parcel would just remain vacant for some time.   I would be disturbed by any overturning of a use that is permitted, provides jobs, and has done everything correct in the land use process. 

It sounds odd but this same flexibility and divergence from plans is great in the long run and has been appreciated here - think of all the tall, dense projects that have had to go through SUP's because they don't conform to zoning, plans etc. Better to incentivize than to take such a heavy handed approach. Better to let the market take the lead on urbanization like it did for Scott's Addition \ Manchester then to try to compel it when it's not ready. See, I want the situation to be that a car wash is a bad use of the land here not just from an urbanist perspective but from a more complete market urbanist reality- but  for the car was operator and the land owner it must've made economic sense to move forward with this project now so i can respect that. One day soon the land values will be such that it will make economic sense to tear down that car wash and put up something taller and grander - but we are just not there yet.

Fully agreed, whw53. Excellent perspective.

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