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ironyisadeadscene

Your biggest disappointments in the 2010s

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I hesitate making this, because I hope not to create a negative tone. But this new tower proposal got me thinking about the last decade and all the new growth and proposals, many of which never happened. So I wanted to see what everyone thought.

 

So here are mine, in no particular order.

Switch pyramid. Maybe I was playing too much Sim City, but I had these visions that all these new jobs would come in and Gaines township would grow to a suburban heaven, with tons and tons of spin off projects like apartment complexes and subdivisions and retail strip malls. And that growth would spill into the core of the metro and really help push the metro forward. Instead, its had minimal impact, and the bang for the buck is basically a sparkler. 

 

Grandville Castle. I was already negative on it because I felt it was so obnoxious, but I hoped that if they did it, they would do it right. They didn't.  It looks unfinished and very disappointing.

 

Arena Place.  If I made a list that was also biggest positive surprises, this would be on it as well. As major catalist for the boom in that area, this was originally proposed to be modest infill, and overnight, we got an 11 story mixed use building. Sadly, it wasn't done very well, and the materials leave us wanting more.

 

Venue Tower. Kind of the same as above. We heard about Bobville forever and people thought that this project would never happen. But it did! But downsized from it's original 20 story plan, it's now one of many 10-12 story buildings that dot the city, instead of a 20 story building in a city that you can count buildings of that height on one hand.

 

Residence Inn. Again, because of downsizing. This project is many people's favorite in the city. Its beautiful and it adds so much to that area. But I diet of 29 stories really leaves you wanting more. And with a new proposal pretty much next door, it will soon potentially be dwarfed and overlooked. If this project was around 25 stories, it would be absolutely a crown jewel of a building.

 

What are yours?

Mods, delete if you think you need to.

Edited by ironyisadeadscene

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Let’s see - 

I was VERY excited years back when CWD announced the original plans for a hotel in the spot that is now the AC Hotel parking lot. I was excited they were hiring a renowned architect and excited for infill. I’m happy about AC being there but still don’t love the current site use entirely. 
 

I was also extremely disappointed when MSU made a huge deal over their plans for the research center site saying that they had a team of over 30 stakeholders to make sure the site had the highest and best use and that it would include mixed use and ground floor retail - only for them to turn around and deliver a sterile compound. Again I’m happy it’s there - maybe I just wish they hadn’t made a big deal about community engagement and mixed use elements several years prior. 
 

I also was very disappointed by the Venue complex and frankly anything Orion has done, but none of it REALLY left me all that deflated lol. 
 

Okay and then there is the Downtown Foodcourt...er...I mean Market... and the surrounding “district...” but that’s just too easy. 
 

Overall though I’m happy with watching this city grow and mature and look forward to more growth and vibrant renewal. 

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2 hours ago, ironyisadeadscene said:

I hesitate making this, because I hope not to create a negative tone. But this new tower proposal got me thinking about the last decade and all the new growth and proposals, many of which never happened. So I wanted to see what everyone thought.

 

So here are mine, in no particular order.

Switch pyramid. Maybe I was playing too much Sim City, but I had these visions that all these new jobs would come in and Gaines township would grow to a suburban heaven, with tons and tons of spin off projects like apartment complexes and subdivisions and retail strip malls. And that growth would spill into the core of the metro and really help push the metro forward. Instead, its had minimal impact, and the bang for the buck is basically a sparkler. 

 

Grandville Castle. I was already negative on it because I felt it was so obnoxious, but I hoped that if they did it, they would do it right. They didn't.  It looks unfinished and very disappointing.

 

Arena Place.  If I made a list that was also biggest positive surprises, this would be on it as well. As major catalist for the boom in that area, this was originally proposed to be modest infill, and overnight, we got an 11 story mixed use building. Sadly, it wasn't done very well, and the materials leave us wanting more.

 

Venue Tower. Kind of the same as above. We heard about Bobville forever and people thought that this project would never happen. But it did! But downsized from it's original 20 story plan, it's now one of many 10-12 story buildings that dot the city, instead of a 20 story building in a city that you can count buildings of that height on one hand.

 

Residence Inn. Again, because of downsizing. This project is many people's favorite in the city. Its beautiful and it adds so much to that area. But I diet of 29 stories really leaves you wanting more. And with a new proposal pretty much next door, it will soon potentially be dwarfed and overlooked. If this project was around 25 stories, it would be absolutely a crown jewel of a building.

 

What are yours?

Mods, delete if you think you need to.

As a moderator, I'm OK with this thread. In order to grow, you have to look at things that didn't go well or as planned. And hopefully learn from them. That goes for individuals, businesses, and cities. 

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-Hinman project losing its original proposed height: It would have been the only building DT that I could see from my house, so I was pretty disappointed.

-The permanent parking lots across from the DT Market: A make or break property for that area, made into a car corral. Effectively killing any momentum there.

-The Kregel building remaining empty: A massive building in a hot district, and it is basically just sitting there because the plans for it fell through.

-Schulers Books closing DT Grand Rapids store: With a DT growing and maturing now, it really sucks that a simple place like this left back in 2013.

-The Fall of ArtPrize: Say what you will, the competition had lost the magic of the first 5 years by the end of the 2010s.

-St. Mary's: Still the worse entity DT when it comes to development, the 2010s saw them spend most of the decade producing street activity-sucking buildings, and mediocre architecture. Also, their appetite for surface parking lots did not slow one iota until the city had to finally tell them no.

-Silverline: Yeah.

- S. Division sliding backwards, losing a lot of business

-S. Division and Wealthy remaining undeveloped after almost decade as an empty lot.

-The Loss of Marie Catrib and her restaurant. It's like the heart of E. Hills was ripped out. That place was the soul of the area for a lot of people, and she was a legend.

Edited by GR_Urbanist
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I’d say overall, the value engineering and boring materials used on many projects. But my short list:

The Venue Tower - the first rendering looked really good. Then they cut the number of floors and simplified the design. 

Arena Place - the apartment section is poorly designed and the materials are sub par.

50 Monroe - it was such an ambitious project, and while I still like it, it could have been so much better. I wish they would have restored the arched windows and used better materials/design on the south side of the building (covering the damage where the building was struck by the smoke stack). 

And my number 1-

20 Monroe Live. Such a disappointing facade, especially after they showed some REALLY cool renderings. The Monroe side flat out shouldn’t have been approved. It’s absolutely terrible, has no real purpose (other than a loading dock) and still look half finished). I like the venue itself, but a huge miss in my books. 
 

Joe

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The retail scene. We lost Schuler's, and as the city has grown the potential for Downtown retail still has not been realized. I think the city really needs to get serious on this issue and work towards solutions. Downtown is still just a glorified food court, but now with craft beer.

The city's handling of parking. It feels like the idealism of a perfect city where nobody drives in a grand new urbanist utopia has been getting in the way of the realistic needs of the city and the people who live and work in the city. Less surface lots is a good thing, but there needs to be more ramps especially for leased spaces for office workers, and new projects with several tens of apartment units going in with very little to no parking spaces seems to be all too common.

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Fully agreed about both the retail scene and South Division, and those are not unrelated to each other.

The Keeler Building.

The lack of activity at Fulton & Market.

12 story buildings in general.

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