GRDadof3

McKay Tower Renovations

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It was fun watching the new lighting while sitting at Ah-Nab-Awen for Movies in the Park last night.  Lots of different colors and they even have the ability to make it scroll text on by.  I remember seeing it say "McKAY" once.

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I like the new lights, and its about time. Amway Grand just needs to light up the window washing trim around the slanted roof top and change the half green roof to the dark blue so its not so obvious that its not glass and that would really make it iconic. Also what ever happened to plans to have a tall-light up spire over the crosswalk bridge a the children s hospital? I think one thing GR can do to make it more of a "cool city" are these kind of lights to accentuate buildings and bridges at night. Just look at cities like Cincinnati, Des Moines, Denver, Louisville, ect. 

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I think the spire on the Children's Museum was cut due to costs. I agree though, I love lighting and think it adds vibrancy to the city. Blue Bridge is getting an LED lighting system soon. 

 

Joe

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The Bank of America Tower in Dallas is lit up in a green outline, that I think would look great on the Amway Grand.

I love that we are lighting our buildings more. I'm especially glad the new owners of McKay Tower not only made sure the lights still work on the ball, but made it much nicer. I love the new look.

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I think the spire on the Children's Museum was cut due to costs. I agree though, I love lighting and think it adds vibrancy to the city. Blue Bridge is getting an LED lighting system soon. 

 

Joe

the blue bridge is going to be great, too bad about the spire and I wish they would have done something a little more aesthetically pleasing with the 131 bridge over the grand like an overhead arch that are coming back more now. 

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I think the spire on the Children's Museum was cut due to costs. I agree though, I love lighting and think it adds vibrancy to the city. Blue Bridge is getting an LED lighting system soon. 

Hospital. ;)

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the blue bridge is going to be great, too bad about the spire and I wish they would have done something a little more aesthetically pleasing with the 131 bridge over the grand like an overhead arch that are coming back more now. 

 

It didn't help that we all laughed at the comparison to a giant hypodermic needle here. :)

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Drove through downtown tonight and love the lights on top of McKay Tower. It definitely adds to the skyline.  :good:

 

Joe

 

Saw it last night. It's like a big bright breast sticking up in the sky (said my wife). Awesome. :)

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still no pictures... Ive been on this site for 7 years and Ive never waited so long for someone to post something so cool... this is killing me....

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Saw it last night. It's like a big bright breast sticking up in the sky (said my wife). Awesome. :)

 

My dad (1918-1981) always said it was called "Joe Brewers nipple". I was talking to someone involved with the restoration and he said they couldn't find any info on it. I googled extensively for Joe Brewer and the MCKay Tower without any sucess.

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My dad (1918-1981) always said it was called "Joe Brewers nipple". I was talking to someone involved with the restoration and he said they couldn't find any info on it. I googled extensively for Joe Brewer and the MCKay Tower without any sucess.

 

Joseph H. Brewer was President of Grand Rapids National Bank (which was housed in the tower) during the Great Depression market crash.  The bank changed names a couple times - It was also called GR National City Bank as well as National Bank of GR.  Here is a newspaper article from 1934 listing Brewer as one of 13 Michigan bankers indicted in the aftermath of the crash.  Not sure about the outcome of the case, but eventually the bank went belly up... and then Frank McKay bought the tower in 1940.

 

Here's an abstract of the Brewer family from GRPL.

Here's a record of Joseph Brewer from White's History of Kent County, Vol. III (1924).

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The closer you get, the more it looks like a giant boob.  However, it is cool to see at night as you approach the city on I-196 from the West.

 

It is totally cool. I particularly like when the lights are in a swirling rainbow pattern with all of them showing (like a spinning umbrella).

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I guess you could say that. I think it looks more like a small capitol dome.

 

Joe

 

The closer you get, the more it looks like a giant boob.  However, it is cool to see at night as you approach the city on I-196 from the West.

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Monroe Center of yore was saturated with commercial signage. If we want a lively downtown, deregulating the onerous sign code would be a great place to start. 

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Well, you know.... We want a vibrant ad active downtown so long as it is on our terms and is our kind of vibrant and active.  Remember, these are the same people who raised a stink about the convention center and it's light displays promoting shows and events. 

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Ridiculous - that's the nicest word I could think of regarding the decision by the zoning board. 

 

http://www.mlive.com/news/grand-rapids/index.ssf/2013/12/mckay_tower_dome_lights_in_dow.html#incart_river_default#incart_m-rpt-2

 

Who sits on this board and how do you go about getting them replaced?

The members are listed on Favorite City's website.

They are appointed by their respective commissioners, so if you have a problem, start there.

 

City code also states that such displays shall not "flash, undulate, pulse, or portray explosions, fireworks, flashes of light, or blinking or chasing lights" and shall not "expand or contract, bounce, rotate, spin, twist or other similar movements." An 8-to-1 vote represents a clear decision based on logic and common sense; the BZA was interpreting the ordinance. (We had more closely-split votes over issues such as whether a landmark building really needed additional signage on each face.)

 

The city now will work with building owners on how often the dome lights can change color or blink.

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A pity.  I could see a scrolling marquis with verbiage to the effect of .............. See this structure? ............... Go to Lady Godiva's and see the real thing! ....................  

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