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Spectrum - Monroe North Campus


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3 hours ago, joeDowntown said:

I guess I whole heartedly disagree. Seems like a defeatist attitude. If the business needs a zoning change due to the type of use, the city can (and should) IMHO say no. I thought that was what planning and zoning boards did, ensure that redevelopment fits the plan. 

The comment about the rapids restoration or park not being valid since ground hasn’t been turned is garbage.  Millions of dollars get spent before shovels hit dirt, we DO have a master plan, and truly great cities are planned and curated. Mediocre cities throw up their hands and say do whatever you want. 

I’m frustrated that the city doesn’t get tougher. Other than opposing transient alcohol sales, mo one seemed overly concerned about putting a Kum N Go on a busy gateway to downtown GR.

I personally think the city needs to take a harder stance and tell developers if you want to build crap developments, value engineer the heck out of plans, knock stories off your development, just don’t build and come back when you’ve got better plans. Space downtown is finite. Build it right, or let’s wait until someone will. 


The fact that these things happen show we aren't remotely in the position to demand anything this aggressively. This facility isnt going in any place that is a hot location. The gym that was there closed, and these are the people that bought the building likely because they were the only ones that stepped up to do so. Again, the building is surrounded by absolutely nothing that would complement a more "interesting" use, and is otherwise isolated in a dead part of town. GR will want the tax revenue more than to make an example out of these people. That's just the cold reality that exists independent of what we desire here.

The city can certainly tell developers to take a hike because they water-down their projects or because they just arent impressive. Those developers will do just that if they feel like the city at the tier GR is on is being way too picky. We arent as hot to the outside world as we like to believe, with businesses leaving close cities like Chicago dont even give a glance at us as they look for a new place to land. And the current economic climate will certainly humble anyone in the city government real quick if they get too aggressive toward a developer because the building isnt as tall as their renderings showed. Those guys will throw a finger up and tell us to kick rocks.

 Maybe on Pearl street they have that leverage, but on this part of Ottawa? It's a whole other deck of cards at this time. DTGR has several significant empty ground floors and "for rent" signs in far more active parts of DT to make an example of this location.


I get the frustration too, but it is what it is right now.


At the very least they aren't proposing to demolish it.


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On 10/17/2022 at 8:13 PM, GRLaker said:

Can we talk about the fact that Cornhole Health ripped off the API Healthcare logo?

Sort of, API Healthcare doesn’te exist . And so the logo mark is no more. They were bought by Symplr and its now Symplr Workforce Management 


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Can anyone tell me what actually entails converting 875 Ottawa to self storage? Are we talking floor to ceiling concrete? Or just throwing up some studs and drywall to divide up the spaces? 

What I’m getting at is how hard would it be to transition from storage to  say housing and retail in 10-20 years if market conditions change in that area? 

Right now I agree with GR_Urbanist. There is nothing drawing pedestrians in this area right now, and I don’t think that changes until Autocam is gone. I think the city really should push for quality development and make the best attempt to fulfill the master plan, but this space has been vacant for years, I’ve long thought a clothing shop in the end with windows would be gorgeous, but for right now storage may very well be the best use. 

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9 hours ago, droonus2000 said:

There is nothing drawing pedestrians in this area right now, and I don’t think that changes until Autocam is gone. 

You make some good points.  The size of the Autocam (or Autodie?) facility is jarring from an aerial perspective. 

I think the city's continued plans to develop parkland along the perimeter of the district will continue to bring growth, just not at the pace we would like. 

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  • 1 month later...

Took a look a the progress of development today. My first thought is that they are doing really nice brickwork on the building. Hope they do this all the way to the top and don’t swap it out for a cheaper material as they get further up. The pattern is pretty cool (pics below). 

Second, I drove around the back and noticed they’re going vertical with a parking ramp. To my surprise, they’ve already completed another ramp tucked between the new building and the parking structure for embassy suites (if you don’t look closely, they look like the same ramp). That area was so torn up for so long, I could never get a good view of what was going on so I was really surprised:





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  • 1 month later...

Drove by the Corewell development. A few observations:

1. The skywalk is starting to take shape and I think the "courtyard" between the new building and Brassworks will be an interesting feature of the development

2. The brickwork on the new building is very intricate. Looks great!

3. I think North Monroe now has the largest saturation of parking anywhere in the city. Between Embassy Suites, the two ramps Corewell is building, 601 Bond, and the surface lots scattered around, this area has its fill of parking for the next 50 years. :)

4. They build the parking structures FAST. Last time I stopped by, there was only rebar sticking out from the ground. The second ramp looks very close to being completely vertical.

5. Big E's is open again in Embassy Suites. 






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