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East Beltline Developments


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Haha, of course we use the online bill pay... but you can't dispute charges to your account that way and I hate staying on hold forever just to complain... I'd rather walk into a store, explain the situation in person and walk out happy....

Regardless... what is this topic about again??

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The post has been taken down and he/she has been given a warning by the site owner.  @wingbert - Become a useful member of the community (like you had been for years) or leave. It's up to you.

Nobody wants to pay the $0.45 / gallon but these type of improvements will not happen without adequate funding.

Posted Images

If at first you don't succeed... :silly:

Yet another "lifestyle center" site plan and design is being put forward by Evergreen Properties to the Planning Commission for their NE corner of East Beltline and Knapp. This is the parcel across the street from Celebration Village, and has had about 1/2 a dozen versions rejected by the City and a proposed mobile home park at one time.

You all decide. Does this meet the intent of a "lifestyle center"?

2173428105_2032debece_o.jpg

I can't get past the sheer number of parking spaces all over the place. And which side of the buildings will be the "front"?

Elevations (which are OK, but that's neither here nor there I guess):

2173427689_03deac7ae0_o.jpg

I think Evergreen should completely change directions and do luxury apartments, maybe even in a semi-gated setting (because people will have a problem living right next to the Beltline, for privacy and security). And do a smaller portion, maybe 50,000 sf, of retail on the corner as part of the apartment complex. The only high-end suburban apartments in GR I can think of is River Oaks apartments in Kentwood near Bailey's Grove (on East Paris Ave), and maybe Woodland Creek. Both of which are deep on the Southeast side though.

http://images.apartments.com/propimages/10...26/BL010164.JPG

Just a thought. Maybe even do buildings designed like Park Row Condominiums. Lynn Rabaut, who sits on the East Beltline Overlay District, mentions that office or residential use at this site would create more income tax for the city than retail. Plus, the added housing will help sustain and maybe help finish Celebration Village. FH schools, walk to Meijer, walk to coffee shops, restaurants, movies, Rapid stop at Meijer, bike to the Meijer Gardens, township park across the street with hiking trails, bike trails on Knapp, 15 minutes from downtown, and just South of another potential lifestyle center at 3 Mile and the E. Beltline. Hmmmm.

Plus, it's already zoned Medium-Density Residential!

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Hmmm.... There is something about the elevation renderings....Is it just me or is there a trend of slapping on arched and curved roofs on suburban developments as of late. I'm seeing curved roofs appearing on all sorts of new strip malls and various developments all over town. I like the curved roofs but don't want them to become a cliche.

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Wrong. Wrong. Wrong.

I hate it.

Let's face it. It's one giant strip mall split up into thirds. There's no true "streetscape" and "walkability" between the buildings, they're smashed in between parking lots?!

Lifestyle Center my dairy air.

This developer has the land to create something marvelous for this corner. As mentioned he could do high scale apartments or condo's...give them a complete modern look.

And if anything, I think that traffic light that goes into celebration village from beltline should be a shared traffic light for the other side of the street. I know - even though it's just one more traffic light added to that street - it's not going to do any good if they have to add another one for people to turn left into the property itself and creating a chaotic road situation.

Some example of things that could be built there (and heck even some mixed use buildings would be nice)

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Edited by blueradon
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Those are great blueradon! I don't even think they need that much retail, as there will be a big retail complex less than a mile North added shortly (and if it doesn't go through, the retailers they have lined up won't jump to this corner).

I think he should partner up with an apartment developer from somewhere (Chicago maybe), and develop 75% of this as residential corporate apartments. I checked Oakwood Corporate Housing's website, and as I thought, they only list River Oaks and Woodland Creek on there:

http://www.oakwood.com/action/oakwood/sear...amp;bedrooms=-1

Seems like we're due for a nice new luxury apartment complex, and not all the new young professionals to the area are going to want to live downtown. And with the housing market down for a while, a lot of transferees might prefer to rent for a year or two before deciding to buy.

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This is my idea for what should be done. Since we all hate one thing the most about lifestyle centers is the sea of parking - I tried to hide it as much as I can - only really leaving one open area from beltline where you could visibly see the parking lot. I guess you can say that some people may not even go in there if they don't see from the road itself that you can park somewhere to shop around.

I wanted to keep the retail as close to beltline as I could - and I actually set it up so that people will have to walk on the sidewalk on beltline to get to some of the stores. It adds great frontage instead of the popular regime of placing the buildings backwards.

The one thing I did like about their plan was the pond that separates the buildings between neighboring homes. I think this provides a great buffer zone and adds opportunity for other things to be placed around it instead of a parking lot.

knappcorner.jpg

Map legend is as follows:

Pink - Retail only

Dark Purple - Mix-use (office/retail with apartments on 2nd and 3rd floors)

Orange - Office use with apartments/condo on 2nd and 3rd floors

Yellow - service office buildings (restaurants, banks, etc)

Blue - Parking Lots (but you could also consider the main roads having angled parking as well

Red - Parking Garages (at least 2 stories - to match the height of the buildings)

Green - Apartments/Condos/Townhomes

Examples of apartment/condo buildings:

2007_12.jpg

istockphoto_1821966_modern_suburban_family_houses.jpg

SpgfComm.jpg

main_street_townhomes.jpg

Mixed-use buildings:

avalon.jpg

2005-02-23BroadwayMixedUse_.jpg

thefuture.jpg

Cam%203_Final_LoLoRes.jpg

Edited by blueradon
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knappcorner.jpg

Did you just make that today? That's great, being inside that lifestyle center it would be hard to tell you were in an artificial downtown. They have come up with how many plans for this development? None are half as good as yours.

I like that you include parking decks in the plan, although the one on the left seems too small to be practical.

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Did you just make that today? That's great, being inside that lifestyle center it would be hard to tell you were in an artificial downtown. They have come up with how many plans for this development? None are half as good as yours.

I like that you include parking decks in the plan, although the one on the left seems too small to be practical.

Yeah now that I look at it - the other red square is a tad bit too small

Heck - could even do the whole thing as one big parking ramp and build it nice like the ones downtown.

Better than a surface lot!

And yes - I did make that today - took me an hour compared to them probably taking a month or two

Edited by blueradon
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If at first you don't succeed... :silly:

Yet another "lifestyle center" site plan and design is being put forward by Evergreen Properties to the Planning Commission for their NE corner of East Beltline and Knapp. This is the parcel across the street from Celebration Village, and has had about 1/2 a dozen versions rejected by the City and a proposed mobile home park at one time.

You all decide. Does this meet the intent of a "lifestyle center"?

2173428105_2032debece_o.jpg

I can't get past the sheer number of parking spaces all over the place. And which side of the buildings will be the "front"?

Elevations (which are OK, but that's neither here nor there I guess):

2173427689_03deac7ae0_o.jpg

(quoting my own post)

Anyone know what happened with this project at the PC meeting? I was unable to stay for the whole thing, and I haven't found any mention of it in the local MSM. GRCityPlanner?

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thats what I was wondering, or is one of the projects not literally on the corner?

Like I do a lot, they got their directions mixed up. :) The new courthouse is going to be at the SOUTHeast corner of Knapp and East Beltline, behind the new Chase Bank, not the Northeast corner.

http://maps.live.com/default.aspx?v=2&...3&encType=1

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whats the appeal of building an artificial DT?

What's not to like? For the majority of Americans, it means free convenient parking, a critical mass of high-quality national retailers, and the "sense of place" that you get in a traditional neighborhood or downtown. At least, in theory. They are very popular and account for a huge percentage of new large-scale retail complexes going up around the country. I'd say just about every city in the country has at least one, with more on the way.

In related news, the Village at Knapp's Crossing (Northeast corner of Knapp and Beltline) received preliminary approval last night with their new site plan:

Press link

Apparently the Planning Commission now feels they have finally met the principles of a "lifestyle center". More approvals are needed before ground-breaking though, and according to the article, the competing development 1/2 mile North has not moved forward due to the economy. No date has been set yet on ground-breaking for that one.

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whats the appeal of building an artificial DT?

DT is cool.

http://www.urbanplanet.org/forums/index.ph...st&p=898575

The buildings look nice (better than Waterfall/Gay 90's/Rolling Deer Pheasant Meadows Plaza, anyway) and DT serves as a natural gathering place.

If you build your own faux DT, you can eliminate those pesky curb & gutters, parking meters, street buskers, disadvantaged begging for cigarettes, and the like.

You can even proclaim that, as private property, no one is allowed to linger too long, or collect signatures for a petition, or hold a demonstration, or do anything else that might pollute The Shopping Environment®.

[still waiting for word of the proposed MHP]

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Like I do a lot, they got their directions mixed up. :) The new courthouse is going to be at the SOUTHeast corner of Knapp and East Beltline, behind the new Chase Bank, not the Northeast corner.

http://maps.live.com/default.aspx?v=2&...3&encType=1

Does anyone know why the county is building a courthouse here instead of downtown or at least in the city?

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Does anyone know why the county is building a courthouse here instead of downtown or at least in the city?

It will be a consolidation of the 63rd District's 1st and 2nd Divisions.

(1st division) encompasses the Cities of Cedar Springs and Rockford; Townships of Tyron, Solon, Nelson, Spencer, Sparta, Algoma, Courtland, Oakfield, Alpine, Cannon, Plainfield, Gratton, Casnovia Village, and Lake and Kent City

(2nd division) encompasses the Cities of E. Grand Rapids and, Lowell; and the Townships of Grand Rapids, Ada, Cascade, Vergennes, Lowell, Bryon, Gaines, Caledonia and Bowne.

http://www.accesskent.com/CourtsAndLawEnfo...rts/default.htm

Right now the 1st division is in downtown Rockford, and the 2nd division is off of Cascade Rd and Kenmoor. The city of Rockford is pretty peeved about the move apparently.

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Thanks guys. Too bad it's not being built on the grid in one of those cities.

I believe this courthouse serves Northern Kent county Citys such as Rockford, Cedar Springs exct. If anything it should be built in the community it will serve which is up that way.

It will be a consolidation of the 63rd District's 1st and 2nd Divisions.

(1st division) encompasses the Cities of Cedar Springs and Rockford; Townships of Tyron, Solon, Nelson, Spencer, Sparta, Algoma, Courtland, Oakfield, Alpine, Cannon, Plainfield, Gratton, Casnovia Village, and Lake and Kent City

(2nd division) encompasses the Cities of E. Grand Rapids and, Lowell; and the Townships of Grand Rapids, Ada, Cascade, Vergennes, Lowell, Bryon, Gaines, Caledonia and Bowne.

http://www.accesskent.com/CourtsAndLawEnfo...rts/default.htm

Right now the 1st division is in downtown Rockford, and the 2nd division is off of Cascade Rd and Kenmoor. The city of Rockford is pretty peeved about the move apparently.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Steve Benner finally won his three year battle with the Zoning Board for approval of the Village at Knapp's Crossing development. He says he can now attract national tenants now that the plans have been approved, including a large "department store" sized anchor to the development.

Zoning Board of Appeals approves Knapp project

Final approved site plan. I have to say the "parking to building ratio" looks a lot better than past proposals.

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Here were some of the other proposals:

2284261896_cf8a3fe4db_b.jpg

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2173428105_2032debece_o.jpg

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Great! Now that this battle is over the property can sit with the rest of them (Orchard Park, Orchard Hills) waiting on the economy to change! The site plan does look better!

I think he'll build the Walgreens on the corner parcel. He mentioned a while ago that he already had a letter of intent from them.

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  • GRDadof3 changed the title to East Beltline Developments

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