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IN PROGRESS: Front Street @ Adriaen's Landing

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Cap Grille is opening I think on the 6th.

 

so they are likely doing soft opening now.

 

its all over the HBJ and courant.

 

the soft opening thing is my assumption though :)

 

I wonder what we will hear about next?  Whatever it is I hope the build out process is swift and we can make this place look and feel more active and enticing.

 

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I noticed that there is now a coming soon sign for Nix's Contemporary New England Seafood hanging in the window of the space between Capital Grille and Infinity Hall.  I'm not familiar with this place but checked out the website for the flagship in Boston and it seems like an upscale restaurant/lounge type of spot.  Front Street is definitely filling up nicely now.  Can't wait until the next phase gets underway!

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Did some googling and found

 

NIX's Mate in the financial district

and NIX's Plymouth, um in Plymouth (pic below)

 

A seafood place is just a no brainer here

here is a article and pix of the Boston one

http://traveleatlove.com/2012/07/nixs-mate-the-restaurant-not-the-island/

 

 

Nix_sPlymouthexterior.jpg

Edited by The Voice of Reason

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In the article that is now in the courant, it mentions that Nitkin is in negotiations with 3 additional tenants, all fast casual resturants. 

 

There are literally thousands of brands that fit that category, so who knows what we will get.  I suspect it will be someone that operates near convention centers.  Not sure that might be but I suspect it will be familiar names.

 

Also, Back to NIX

I am glad its a "local" company.  Having unique options is important to the success of this development.  With chains like Capital Grill and Teds, we did well to get quality, but all too many of these kinds of developments load up with national chains and ultimately underwelm visitors.  I know when I go to any city I avoid chains like they are the plague.  I want Hartford visitors to experience Hartford.  NIX's will be just 4 locations, so thats pertty unique.  Also it gives downtown a seafood option.  Something missing sice that place closed on Pratt.

 

Considering the places already leased, I would think it has to be a little on the specialty side.   so, maybe ethnic food.... Something mexican, something chinese like, and something itallian.

 

Were I to guess..  I would be wrong :)  But to provide contrast, something like California Pizza Kitchen as Itallian.

 

Maybe a Buffalo wild wings..  they are expanding in the area.

 

and Maybe a Baja Fresh or Chipotle who knows

 

 

I did recently discover that Jimmy Johns is expanding into New York while visiting Syracuse 2 weeks ago.  So I will say that a subway or something like it could easily survive in this area.  as could a duncan donuts, because downtown clearly can support 5 already

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Must be so......

 

 

Due to the construction of the Front Street Loft apartments, the upper part of Front Street from Front Street Crossing to Prospect Street will be closed to vehicle and pedestrian traffic beginning Wednesday, Dec. 11 until further notice. The entrance to both Front Street North and South Parking Garages will remain accessible from Front Street Crossing (from Arch Street).

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I know financing was competed and they were supposed to break ground in the fall. I was over there yesterday and a backhoe is tearing up the blacktop and Front St. Is closed.

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They are indeed over there tearing it up now. They put out a traffic advisory at my job that the street would be closed until further notice due to construction of the apartments.

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It isn’t the official groundbreaking for the apartments planned for Hartford’s Front Street, but the environmental clean-up necessary to make the site ready is now underway.

FrontStApts1-300x225.jpg

Snow covers Hartford’s Front Street  today and construction vehicles are idle, but preparations are now underway for building a new apartment building.

 

 

You can’t see it under today’s snowfall, but the paved parking area is now being dug up to deal with contaminated soil, the Capital Region Development Authority told the Courant  The same work was done to prepare for the Front Street’s first phase, the entertainment district, just to the east.

 

Michael W. Freimuth, CRDA’s executive director, said the work should be completed in the next month or so — clearing the way for the $33 million project. The project will include 121 market-rate apartments.

 

Financing for the project includes a $13.7 million bank loan, $13.5 million in funds from the old Capital City Economic Development Authority, which oversaw the development of the convention center and the first phase of Front Street, plus numerous housing projects downtown. The balance is $6.2 million million in equity from developer HB Nitkin Group.

The CCEDA funds include a $1.5 million grant from the state’s Office of Policy and Management. The funds are being used for the environmental clean-up.

Edited by beerbeer

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I was actually pleased and dissapointed at the same time.  Its not hard to add a lot of charm for almost no money in a building like this.  its pretty damn bland considering its surrounded by historical buildings on 3 sides.   

 

this is though pretty much the same as the sketsc we saw a while ago, so no surprises.

 

the real key will be the livliness of the retail and signage ettc.. that will hopefully add the color and vibrancy.

 

the best bit is of course the view of that first photo.  that retail will be facing the Wadsworth, but also highly visible from Travelers rebuilt plaza.   this connection here will be the link always planned here.  its great stuff

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I like it. It blends in fine withe the new construction in the area which in turn blends pretty well with the historic architecture. Getting street front retail in this part of town will be huge and will serve to bridge the riverfront area with the heart of downtown. Walking from the Convention Center to Main St. will be 100% more inviting once this gets done.

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I checked out Nitkins leasing map.

 

It looks pertty good.  It has the apartment on it and Uconn.  it also shows Spotlight, Infinity and Cap Grill

 

Does not show Teds or Nix's

 

Im thinking this new building will come online with some retail tenents in toe.  Considering they have interest in I think it was 3 additional fast casual places, they are likely to be mostly leased out by the time this thing is built.  maybe even with some pent up demand.

 

PS, if I have money and all that, Id open a bar on the corner of this building closest to the Elk Lodge.

Its extremely visible from the future tavvelers plaza that I think would make it a popular watering hole for travelers people as well as downtown people in general.  if that plaza looks anything like the iQuilt plan it will be awesome!

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It has been crazy snowy so I am sure delays have been ongoing, however I drove by the site Sunday night and noted the sizable hole they are creating.

 

it is probably the removal of dirty soil, but once you have a hole, the next step is just pouring concrete :)

 

 

thought I saw a boring machine for either samples or maybe pilon footings or something

 

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I saw this last night and there was very little info in there.  But how exciting is this?

I looked it the area on google maps and well its certainly interesting.

 

"The parking lot was envisioned for future expansion of the convention center. Any development on the site would have to constructed in such a way that it could be incorporated into an enlarged convention center should that become necessary in the future."

 

I think obviously a good deal of street front retail is possible.  The convention center is essentially elevated by 1 floor, so any development could be elatively large as long as it were designed to fit under an expanded floorplate.

 

I would like to see whatever is build here to not only be large in terms of retail scope, but I would like to see some height here.  Ideally a hotel or apartment tower outside of the Convention center template would be excelent.  I mention a hotel because I know the Mariott get good numbers and there surely is a need for a larger convention hotel.

I know many conventions that could potentially come to Hartford do not because there is not a hotel with 500 rooms attached to the center.

I think that there may be companies interested in building a hotel here especially considering the view it would have and the enviable location garnering additional revenue from retail leases.

 

If not a hotel, I would alos be pleased with an apartment or condo because I really do think the location has some potential in the long run... you have potential for amazing views of the river and they are forever views.

you have easy access to the highways and you have crap tons of parking.

add in a fully leased front street?  movies, etc... and then you are just 2 blocks to wadsworth and you can take the damn star shuttle anywhere else downtown!

 

 

If it is a hotel with retail I sure hope it is large, like 200 rooms plus so it can sustain services and take advantage of the views with its height.  also, to bring the room count up :)

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This is very exciting. Hell, I say try to expand the convention center now and try to incorporate the prospective tenant into the new development while also allowing space for more street front retail. I think there will be enough apartments elsewhere, considering the hotel conversion and Front St. This should provide enough market pressure to help get AI's project off of the drawing board. Getting the Marriott to add another tower would be great, I thought they actually had room for that closer to the highway entrances between it and the Science Center though.

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I know there has been talk of UConn building an additional building in that spot. The only other possibility I can think of is the Thomas Hooker brewery.

I agree with what others have said here... why not a mixed use building that incorporates more hotel rooms and apartments?

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There is room for the Mariott to expand.

 

If you look from google maps there is a little dirt patch that runs perpendicular to the pedestrian bridge and paralless to the convention center walk way.  there wouls surely be a  bridge over to the existing hotel.  

It is designed to expend to 700 rooms from its 409 current rooms.

I am sure it is expandable further if they chose to spend the money and of course slightly reconfigure the road there. 

 

 

It is my understanding that hartford struiggles for conventions due to the lack of a 500 room hotel attached.   700 I think is another key number for conventions as is 1000

 

Only the biggest have 1000 room hotels.  As an example Minneapolis and Austin are just building 1000 room hotels. 

 

 

I am still not sold on Hooker, and I like that brewery.

 

I think they belong at Colt if anywhere

brewing is an industrial use and requires massively tall roofs atc... I think those uses are not appropriate in an entertainment district.

 

A brewpub and tasting room works though  but that could go virtually anywhere

 

Regarding  the lack of need for apartments,

Yeah I want more appartments at front street. so I disagree

if we get 121 up by the Elks club, and thats it, well this is just not enough for the area.

phase 4 or whatever you call the  Arch Street parking lot, needs to include housing and this site would also really help.

 

I have to think that with around 300 apartments in the area plus some more hotel rooms there will be sustained vitality... otherwise it will be a commerical strip mall.

 

Edited by The Voice of Reason

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