uptownliving

Jonas Federal Courthouse Renovation

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On the topic of being in a "better urban environment"... this begs the question(s)...  

  1. Will the Federal Courthouse be an impediment to the urban environment on this block? I would assume, if designed conventionally, it would.
  2. Given the security and logistics of a federal facility are there any other options? Putting Retail around a high security facility might be awkward.
  3. Is this site the best site? Thinking the Marshall Park side of the Gov Center maybe...

I realize these issues have likely been discussed previously, but it is a new day.

Edited by archiham04

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I would like to see us get our own "arena district" like in Columbus and this at this spot would impede that a bit HOWEVER, with city hall, the jail, AT&T fortress and reserve right there, I don't think this is a prime spot for anything except government buildings. Id much rather see the lots in front of First Baptist become something urban than this lot.

I'd envision any "arena district" development 'north' of Caldwell

Edited by Jayvee

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On the topic of being in a "better urban environment"... this begs the question(s)...  

  1. Will the Federal Courthouse be an impediment to the urban environment on this block? I would assume, if designed conventionally, it would.
  2. Given the security and logistics of a federal facility are there any other options? Putting Retail around a high security facility might be awkward.
  3. Is this site the best site? Thinking the Marshall Park side of the Gov Center maybe...

I realize these issues have likely been discussed previously, but it is a new day.

I don't think its the right site, what so ever, but the Marshall park side of the government center is definitely not the right place. leave 2nd ward alone until we can find someone to make Brooklyn Village happen. I would love for it to be built in the wedge plaza in front of the city government center. This spot was originally supposed to be another tower when the city government center was first conceived. 

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There are also some other no-mans-land site further into the government center that may have been better.  Best would be to do that old model of co-locating it with the USPS.  That is a block that may have been good and Mcdowell would be the Courthouse street.  

 

 

Obviously the deal was made a long time ago so that the city could secure the old courthouse in a land-swap.  I'm not sure it is possible to redo it, since really all sites will have the negative trade offs of being the destination of the worst criminals in the region.  

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This block of Trade already has a street-life-killing, insular, high-security, single land use with the Federal Reserve, so what's another?

And the Police Station, and the ATT Monolith Switching facility and the "Rena.  All single use no retail places.

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And the Police Station, and the ATT Monolith Switching facility and the "Rena.  All single use no retail places.

One nitpick, the Arena has a few retail spaces. Not sure whats in there now, barber shop and pizza place last I saw. 

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One nitpick, the Arena has a few retail spaces. Not sure whats in there now, barber shop and pizza place last I saw. 

other than No Grease, they are not destination retail

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So a full city block is a large canvas.  And a federal courthouse budget is not going to be small potatoes.  If ever there were an opportunity to design your way out of something bad (or into something good) this project has a lot going for it... just sayin.

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Archiham speaks the truth.  There is some seriously fantastic architecture in this game.  Salt Lake City, San Francisco, Buffalo, Miami, Portland (rehab of existing structure), Toledo, and Austin all have some bad-ass Federal Courthouses, either built or designed.  The rehab of the Portland Courthouse makes me weep tears of joy. 

 

Just pray we don't get the Nashville treatment.  Some seriously ugly going on there.

Edited by Miesian Corners

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Bad News. The GSA has decided that Charlotte doesn't need a new courthouse afterall. The City will be selling the courthouse back to the GSA in 2017 once a new roof is installed on the historic Jonas Courthouse. The city will be getting back the gravel lot next to the arena in 2017 and I would expect they will put it on the market to sell.

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Bad News. The GSA has decided that Charlotte doesn't need a new courthouse afterall. The City will be selling the courthouse back to the GSA in 2017 once a new roof is installed on the historic Jonas Courthouse. The city will be getting back the gravel lot next to the arena in 2017 and I would expect they will put it on the market to sell.

that's not entirely bad news. I actually like the look of the existing courthouse and that land will be VERY valuable and make the city a lot of money. 

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Seriously WTF?

Its not like the metro hasn't grown explosively every since the current courthouse was built in the 1920s(?).  I had also thought that politics worked the other way, federal money getting pushed to swing states -- not solid states like Tennessee (Nashville was ahead of us on the list). 

Perhaps the next new courthouse can anchor our federally funded cap over 277.

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But at least now, another block along streetcar can actually develop into something more resembling TOD.

Yeah, das ist gud. As beautiful as Trade St is compared to most of Uptown (which it is, it's gorgeous), there's very little to do on there, even though much of the space is public (gov't building lawns/plazas), it's a sleepy street by default. 

Though I love the Mahatma Ghandi statue. Very serene.

Edited by SgtCampsalot

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Ew. Horrible memories that our only hope for high rises was a courthouse.

 

I'd like to see educational institutions located on the block. Maybe UNCC and a high school. There is probably more monetary benefit to selling the land for higher density uses but I think a school would be a long term benefit.

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I'm hoping UNCC uses another block for this-or-that. I suspsect First Ward will end up being the more interesting ward in the next few decades. It's on the same corridor as NoDa, it has a university campus, it will have a park, it has the Market. It's far more bike/ped friendly than others, especially since it's less of a thoroughfare for cars than 3rd/4th Ward (Graham St kills it for me).

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without opening the Levineland can of worms, it would be a plus for the Queens Law School to end up close to UNCC in First Ward.

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This block definitely should not be public/institutional use. History (hopefully) has taught us that single use districts are terrible for cities.  Charlotte needs to do EVERYTHING they can to diversify the types of uses in this area which is extremely heavy on the institutional right now...

Edited by archiham04

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This block definitely should not be public/institutional use. History (hopefully) has taught us that single use districts are terrible for cities.  Charlotte needs to do EVERYTHING they can to diversify the types of uses in this area which is extremely heavy on the institutional right now...

I disagree. We need young people. I don't think it's heavy on the educational side. The UNCC building doesn't really have much use, does it?

 

i don't equate a high school + other education equivalent to government buildings. I think a high school and teenagers would add a lot more to Uptowns culture than another apartment tower. And it would probably get younger people to hang out uptown more often which would be great. Means more opportunities for businesses other than steakhouses. 

 

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A residential/retail block would put active uses in the district during hours that institutional uses do not.  A good mix makes good urban environment.  No mix makes bad environment.  Look at Marshall Park as the case in point.  Decent park.  No mix of uses surrounding it.

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