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"Once the City Commission approved the idea of a CRA, work began on a detailed redevelopment plan for the downtown district. That plan will include extensive input from the community on what kind of improvements they would like to see for downtown." -talgov.com

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Well here is where I stand on the CRA. I was then, and am still all for it! I believe it is important to show government support and investment in our downtown if we ever wish to see developers exploit its potential beyond our dreams. With that said, I'd like to say the thing that we should do with the monies collected during this CRA era should be used by the city to develop under-used city blocks into models of what we now know as Kleman Plaza.

With the state looking to rid itself of excess real estate and the city and county having first dibbs at this available property, Tallahassee should seize the opportunity to use Capitol Commons as a model for what could become blocks and blocks of beautiful, vibrant, "SmartBlocks". Install the underground parking, create beautiful open, attractive green spaces, decorative light posts, fountains, and funky "dome things". This concept would become unique to Tallahassee and possibly serve as a model for other cities looking to build up their cores.

Anchor the redeveloped blocks with associations looking to relocate into a new, bigger better facility (hopefully many associations sharing a highrise building like the Highpoint Center). The properties vacated by these relocating agencies could be subject to redevelopment themselves possibly taken over by restaurants, and shops until we've created the grand, vibrant core we are all looking forward to.

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It is said that this new surge of interest in Tallahassee's downtown will not only reflect well upon the city of Tallahassee but the state of Florida. I plan to look at this much the same way as we have looked at the evolution of the Capitol Building as the state has matured over the years.

Residents looking to play a role in making downtown that vibrant area long after 8 o'clock will apprecaite having a plaza to call their own located in proximity to their future home, so will future companies looking to bring High paying jobs to Florida's capital city. When developers see Kleman Plaza, and the projects underway on its soil, many regret they couldn't get there first, its obvious why! So why not do it again, and again?

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The city has seen the money it invested in the building of this plaza return to it with surpluses, surely these types of positive NPV projects make it a no brainer that this is what we must do to establish ourselves again as the social capital of Florida, and one of the nation's most beautiful cities.

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City wants to reassess plaza plans

Tight budget, mixed results prompt questions about investment in Kleman Plaza

By Todd Wright

DEMOCRAT STAFF WRITER

The master plan for Kleman, adopted in 2001, was designed to transform the plaza into downtown's primary entertainment destination. In four years, only bus lanes for the Mary Brogan Museum and the Challenger Learning Center and sidewalks have been added.

With Tallahassee Center now under construction and the Plaza Towers condos planned for the last large parcel on the plaza, the question of amenities for the people who'll be living in the nearly 300 units is at a critical point. The plaza has had little nightlife since its last restaurant closed in November. A planned Harry's Seafood Bar & Grill on the plaza level of the Florida League of Cities building could be the start of making Kleman an evening entertainment option. Harry's is set to open in August. Tharpe, the Tallahassee Center real-estate agent, said she'd like to see a wine bar or jazz bar for residents.

Possible Delays

Outdoor stage: A venue for concerts and other events. It was planned for the south side of the Challenger Learning Center in 2006.

Improved amphitheater: For outdoor plays and other cultural performances. A small amphitheater is in place between the League of Cities building and the Plaza Towers condos parcel.

Sculpture garden: A collection of public art planned near the Plaza Towers site.

Pedestrian bridge: It was to be built over Duval Street to connect Kleman Plaza to City Hall.

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Outdoor stage: The intergovernmental agency over the Blueprint projects chose to go with the amphitheater rather than the much applauded Centennial Field rebuilding concept for the Cascades Park area. They should now decide either to scrap plans for the theatre and stage at Cascades Park, for this one at Kleman Plaza, and go with the Baseball field. Or they could decide to scrap all plans for this Kleman Plaza improvement and go with the stage slated for construction at Cascades leaving the plaza as it is.

Improved amphitheater: I support this investment for the simple reason that the current amphatheatre has been under used and is far too small for many performances. I think the Kleman Sizzles Jazz Concerts are great for the downtown during the summers and they should continue to grow in popularity. Aside from enlarging the stage I see a need for shade, improved stage lighting, and an improved sound system.

Sculpture garden: A collection of public art planned near the Plaza Towers site.

I say we, the taxpayers, don't need to pay for this. If developers want their "people" to have fancy art collections onsite they should pay for them. Funds saved on this project could go toward debt relief in other critical areas.

Pedestrian bridge: It was to be built over Duval Street to connect Kleman Plaza to City Hall. This bridge is not pratical. If built, it would probably only be used by city employees and the few other suits who visit City Hall. Surely I don't see the need to have this bridge if plans are underway to make downtown more pedestrian friendly. This is part of the problem city leaders are experiencing with funds for growth, they are doing some of the same things more than once and waisiting money.

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Pedestrian bridge: It was to be built over Duval Street to connect Kleman Plaza to City Hall. This bridge is not pratical. If built, it would probably only be used by city employees and the few other suits who visit City Hall. Surely I don't see the need to have this bridge if plans are underway to make downtown more pedestrian friendly. This is part of the problem city leaders are experiencing with funds for growth, they are doing some of the same things more than once and waisiting money.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

This is typical of Tally......"we want to be pedistrian friendly....but we are going to build a pedestrian bridge"...? What? That is not pedistrian friendly...that is auto centric. COT trying to have it both ways and it won't work.

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Harry's should help, they're a pretty cool restaurant with good food. I agree with the pedestrian bridge. Jacksonville recently had a similar issue with placing a pedestrian bridge to connect a new parking garage with the new library, which really made no sense, since the bridge would bypass the street retail spaces in the new garage. Luckily, the proposal was defeated.

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City wants to reassess plaza plans

Tight budget, mixed results prompt questions about investment in Kleman Plaza

By Todd Wright

DEMOCRAT STAFF WRITER

Rejuvenating nightlife

With Tallahassee Center now under construction and the Plaza Towers condos planned for the last large parcel on the plaza, the question of amenities for the people who'll be living in the nearly 300 units is at a critical point. The plaza has had little nightlife since its last restaurant closed in November. A planned Harry's Seafood Bar & Grill on the plaza level of the Florida League of Cities building could be the start of making Kleman an evening entertainment option. Harry's is set to open in August. Tharpe, the Tallahassee Center real-estate agent, said she'd like to see a wine bar or jazz bar for residents.

The Mary Brogan Museum's director said the museum is considering extending its hours for people getting off work after 5 p.m. The performance stage planned for outside the Challenger Learning Center is already funded for construction and has gone through the initial design phase. If city leaders decide to go ahead, the stage would be built after Plaza Towers completes its first phase of construction, which might not be until next year. But the city's involvement in improvements could be in wait-and-see mode as city budget issues are worked out.

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I'm glad to see that these people really are trying to better the Kleman Plaza area. If not already being done, I think these people should like collaberate on other ideas to make every business in Kleman Plaza benfits. A mutual relationship. B)

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Do we really need both a performing stage and an amphitheatre on the same plaza? I tend to think they might be waisting money on this.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

They spent what? $42 Million in taxpayers dollars on Kleman plaza. It is all a waste. COT does not spend it's money wisely at ALL. They simply do not know how to attract business (despite REPEATED visits to Austin, Madison, and Raliegh....again wasting tax payers dollars) and their solution is to throw tax dollars around. Yes, Kleman is nice...but it it nothing spectacular...especially when you consider how much public money went into it.

It is projects like this that makes you doubt their ability to do anything on Gaines Street but blow money.

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Ooohhhhh!!! I beg to differ neighbor! Sure they spent $42 Million in construction of Capitol Commons.... wisely so. We now have a very attractive 2000 car parking garage underground which itself is a reason for the investment. But in addition to this, we have relocated the Florida League of Cities into a Class A office building, an IMAX theatre and one of only 50 Challenger learning centers are located on the site in addition to the Mary Brogan Museum of Arts and Science.

The land sold for the sites of the Kleman Tower and GameDay Center Tallahassee brought in more than $7 million dollars in revenues, the parking garage continues to collect dollars day by day, and as sure as life is breathed into our downtown area with the addition of residential housing the IMAX theatre and museums will become more and more significant.

Capitol Commons now known as Kleman Plaza has helped to redefine the image of Tallahassee as a clean, stylish, attractive plaza. There is alot that can be said of how our city has waisted our money, but Kleman Plaza is not one of them.

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Our plaza is definatly quite. as far as a pedestrian bridge, Has any one visited LSU in New Orleans... they have an entire map solely for thier bridges. all the medical students can traverse resterants, living facilities, and classess without stepping into daylight... that would be a little drastic for our downtown. but waiting to see where essential developments actually occur might save alot of frustration, remorse, and money for city officials. with gaines soon to be under transformation, a pedestrian highway from the condos to the commerce may be much more intelligent... screw city hall :D

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^CSMurphy... the plaza is definately quite _____ ? I'd like to see some neat linkages in the downtown area as well. But as a previous forumer noted, this would be retroactive in trying to make our downtown more pedpestrian friendly. The bridge may be seen as auto-friendly.

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:wub: I love downtown Tallahasse. It is so beautiful. When I get my cam I will try to take pics all around the city of Tallahassee. I am so excited for the construction taking place downtown! TaureanJ you are doing a wonderful job with this! ^_^

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Yeah man, good photos. I had lunch saturday on the top floor of the Parking garage on campus (above hte bookstore) you could see monroe street straight on so the skyline contained everything from the Ramada and the old folks tower on the North end and the government buildings in the south, with fsu sprawling amongst trees all beneath me... it was pimp-tastic. also, how old is that church off tennessee and woodward? its nice

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^You know what... maybe I should get up there and try to get a shot of the line from that view. Its tough to get the Georgia Beele (Old Folks) High Rise in any shot with the other buildings. I can only hope that building won't be alone as the only Highrise on that side of the Downtown. It would be nice to tranform some of the old outdated parts of Monroe much the way Sonny Granger is transforming his little part into the Tennyson... one thing he will show once his project is completed is... it can be done.

That church seems fairly modern, but I'd guess and say it was built in the late 60s or 50s possibly. Thats just a guess although it is very nice.

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a nice camera with a little zoom and a panaramic shot could catch it all... there is one kinda obstruction... the bellemy building on campus... standing on the north east corner of the garage had it between the cap and the DOE (i think it is Turlington or something) but you can see the radisson on the north side also... its quaint.

What about developments on the corner of tennessee and N. Monr once the construction companies finish up... i thought i heard about a garage,but i think that another Tennyson would be ideal.. .

another public lot created downtown in the are between campus and downtown might help both parties if FSU could be alotted some of the spaces for the law school and communication students on that side of town... how would a joint project like that get done...

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^ you know! The first thing that came to mind when you mention a development for the Corner of Tennessee and Monroe would have to be the Performing Arts Center. Can you picture this new, state of the art, metropolitan building erected right there on that corner as a gateway into our downtown area?

Now... if the design is anything like the ones we've seen so far for FSU's opera hall... I say keep those as far away from this corner as possible. What we need there is something bold, glassy, and flashy-- showin all the assee. If not the performing arts center surely another highrise office building like the High Point Center could take root. I see where there are several associations downtown that could move into another Multi purpose Class A office building, and of course we need another.

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There are a lot of possibilities on that little corner. What ever they do plan for the Tennessee and Monroe corner I want it to be bold and and different. I like the idea of possibly having the performing art center there, but then again I want another highrise possibly 20 stories. With nice retail. :wub:

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There are a lot of possibilities on that little corner. What ever they do plan for the Tennessee and Monroe corner I want it to be bold and and different. I like the idea of possibly having the performing art center there, but then again I want another highrise possibly 20 stories. With nice retail. :wub:

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

All those in favor..... AIIHHHH!

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Oh yeah... I forgot to touch on that...when the downtown was part of the Capitol Center Planning District, development therein fell under a state headed agency that dictated no building should rise over the capitol building. Control of the Capital Center Planning District (the core of the downtown) has now been transfered to the city for control. They can decide through a variance wether or not to allow height taller than the capitol. This will be a tough task for any developer to achieve because of our water table, and the fact that the Capitol sits on the highest hill downtown.

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i am sorry if i sound naive on this, it does confuse me... with the hilltop locations, would the water table be deeper allowing for deeper anchors? or is it the opposite

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