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GRDadof3

Mercantile Bank to build on Riverfront?

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Did anyone see anything in the news regarding Mercantile Bank's request to build a second building on the riverfront near their current new offices on Leonard? I didn't. The spot is 1054 and 1060 Front Street, currently industrial, and they're going for five stories (current office on Leonard is 4). A lot of surface parking. :sick:

http://www.ci.grand-rapids.mi.us//download...9fd70d8db82.pdf

post-2672-1147292236_thumb.jpg

post-2672-1147292236_thumb.jpg

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Did anyone see anything in the news regarding Mercantile Bank's request to build a second building on the riverfront near their current new offices on Leonard? I didn't. The spot is 1054 and 1060 Front Street, currently industrial, and they're going for five stories (current office on Leonard is 4). A lot of surface parking. :sick:

http://www.ci.grand-rapids.mi.us//download...9fd70d8db82.pdf

so they actually want to build on the west side eh?

see what they should have done is waited a couple more years, then go ahead and build a 20 story building in town :P

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The planning commission tabled Mercantile's application because they felt that an office-only use directly on the riverfront would be contrary to the goals of the master plan. We'll see what happens at the next PC meeting on the 25th. I agree that there was too much parking, especially considering the surroundings.

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so they actually want to build on the west side eh?

see what they should have done is waited a couple more years, then go ahead and build a 20 story building in town :P

If they keep growing at the rate they are, you could see them expanding there offices into a high rise downtown. Why stop at 20 floors, why not say 40! It could happen, they seem to double in size every few years.

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I'd love to see them lead the charge in taking back the west side of the river from the industrial users there now.

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even though it's office only, don't you think it could very well spurn other investments to make the river a destination and more attractive?

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even though it's office only, don't you think it could very well spurn other investments to make the river a destination and more attractive?

That would be nice, but I hear all those property owners want way too much for their properties to make it viable. Just DON'T TOUCH my Clipper Belt Lacer Company building. That place is awesome looking. Make it a market or something.

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I agree that to bring change, things need to start with someone taking the innovative. This expansion is a good type of infill project if it

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Or if the only problem is that It's all office, couldn't Mercantile bank Do some slight revisions to allow for riverfront retail or something? I don't know how cost effective it would be presently. But definately a vision for the future. Would that appease the city's issue with the location?

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Or if the only problem is that It's all office, couldn't Mercantile bank Do some slight revisions to allow for riverfront retail or something? I don't know how cost effective it would be presently. But definately a vision for the future. Would that appease the city's issue with the location?

I think it'd be a tough draw for retail near that location. One-way streets (Wait, front is 2-way, right?), squeezed by 131 and the river would make it a difficult destination. They'd have to have a pretty sweet draw to get folks there. (This coming from average Joe Public like myself). Plus there's really not any other retail on the east side of 131 to get people over there for mutliple stops.

Or maybe I'm talking out of my large rear-end. (It's been known to happen.)

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You can read the minutes of the meeting to see some of the feedback and why the rezoning was tabled. Mainly for the river easement/setback, height, and the signage. The current master plan asks for mixed use, with also a consideration for medium to high-density residential.

http://www.ci.grand-rapids.mi.us/meeting.p...81&type=minutes

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Well if it were small specialty stores, florists, news stands, stuff like that, they have a captive audience already with thier corporate workers that are there. Maybe an upscale deli type place. You could probabally attract some of the mechanics up and down front, not to mention some of the bridge water folks.

Kind of an after thought, Obviously they are expanding....again. Why didn't they just build a larger mid-high rise facility inside the CBD? It seems it would be more cost effective. I'd like to know what the future plans Mercantile has. I'd like to see tall buidlings, but I think that has more to do with the fact that i'm a short person and Im fascinated by big and tall things. However I wouldn't be opposed to a low rise corporate complex that spans a few city blocks, especially in the West Leonard area. That can only help Neighborhood revitalization.

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There is a rendering in today's Business Review WM. It looks like the building would come right up to the river. Seems a bit cut off from the public. I hope they can come back with some retail/residential components. Can't get the image to post. Can anybody?

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Can't get the image to post. Can anybody?

Here, I scanned it for you:

merc.jpg

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Here, I scanned it for you:

merc.jpg

What would be on the other side of this building? Would there be a big parking lot facing Front Street, or do they have enough parking on their other surface lot?

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This seems a little strange. They build 2 buildings a quarter mile apart from one another in a few years? That seems like an inefficient use of money if you ask me. I thought that was a bank's area of expertise.

And it looks just like the other one. I like the one that exists now, but I sure hope the design changes.

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Is this Mercantile's idea of moving closer to the "action?"

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What would be on the other side of this building? Would there be a big parking lot facing Front Street, or do they have enough parking on their other surface lot?

I'll give you one guess Gary:

147072324_aa3467a785_o.jpg

It's actually closer than a quarter mile Andy. It's right across the street, and what they are calling their East Campus

http://www.mlive.com/mbusinessreview/west/...680.xml&coll=12

But at least they have umbrellas on their riverfront patio, because that's what really matters. I think a better idea would be to build this second "tower" on their current big ugly parking lot, and then pave over this riverfront lot with a new surface parking lot. Because nothing says riverfront beauty like asphalt. And then they would preserve their own views of the river in infamy.

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But at least they have umbrellas on their riverfront patio, because that's what really matters. I think a better idea would be to build this second "tower" on their current big ugly parking lot, and then pave over this riverfront lot with a new surface parking lot. Because nothing says riverfront beauty like asphalt. And then they would preserve their own views of the river in infamy.

That post was funny as hell, but I would actually rather see Mercantile do just that. Possibly at some point down the road someone could build a ramp for the bank and something that utilizes the site a little better could be built.

If the current site plan really happens we'll be stuck with it for a long time I'm afraid.

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I thought they wanted this building to be taller than the original, it looks about the same.

Good point was made, what is their end game for this, are they intending on making a lowrise suburban office park in the Leonard Neighborhoods? I'd rather see them just build up downtown.

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I'll give you one guess Gary:

147072324_aa3467a785_o.jpg

It's actually closer than a quarter mile Andy. It's right across the street, and what they are calling their East Campus

http://www.mlive.com/mbusinessreview/west/...680.xml&coll=12

But at least they have umbrellas on their riverfront patio, because that's what really matters. I think a better idea would be to build this second "tower" on their current big ugly parking lot, and then pave over this riverfront lot with a new surface parking lot. Because nothing says riverfront beauty like asphalt. And then they would preserve their own views of the river in infamy.

Oh sweet mother of crap!!

What the flip is wrong with these clowns? First they build that plastic POS of an office building that they keep pretending is going to start a Leonard st. Renaissance, now they spit out its mutant twin across the street. Neither of these places seemed to have employed an architect that didnt get their degree from a Happy Meal box, and both of these buildings have enough asphalt to qualify as a Wal-Mart. They are not even trying to establish a street wall. What a blown opportunity!

And the sad thing is that if anyone other than these guys ever builds in the same area, they will have no reason to do anything better than the nonsense that Mercantile Bank has put forward. Why waste their money to make a 1st class building when your neighbor built on the cheap? The whole area, instead of being a well made, dense business district will look like something from a Grand Rapids Township office park!

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I think the first one looks ok, but you're right, two of them that close will look pretty corny. Maybe they should add a fifty foot sign, too. :sick:

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Did anyone happen to go to the Planning Commission meeting yesterday and get an update on this? They had apparently gone back with some changes (increased setback from the river being one of them).

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I wasn't at the meeting, but I discovered several other buildings they have scattered across GR that look exactly the same, but shorter.. so I highly doubt they'll ever change the building's look.

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Oh God, it's a twin. Yeah, you can already see from the other building that the parking is going to wreck the appearance.

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