uptownliving

Metropolitan, Midtown Redevelopment

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I dont see how you can say 3 malls failed. The same mall was renovated and reinvented, but 3 separate developments havent occupied the site. This is a development that will thrive if designed properly. Its a prime location now and the land is severely underutilized, seeing as it is bordered by Dilworth/Myers Park and downtown, Elizabeth,etc.

On a side note, it seems funny how major retailers snub most downtowns in the country. if this project were just inside the loop, i doubt Target or Home Depot would even look at it.

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I don't see where taxpayers are losing out. The only thing that can happen if this development goes through is that the tax base is increased. If this development does not go through, then the taxpayer loses out on the potential taxes generated by higher property value as well as sales taxes. Even if this development does go through and it fails the taxpayer still does not lose out...since NO MONEY WAS GIVEN TO THE DEVELOPER.

I like to think of this as a cancer. If someone finds out they have cancer...they want to get rid of it. They don't continue to do the status quo. They take special actions and spend money to get rid of the cancer.

Blighted areas in a city are just like cancer. If you don't take special actions to get rid of it then it spreads. Thats why I agree with the city assisting to help with this developement..as it will get rid of a current blight and turn it into something nice. No one likes living or working next to a blighted area...so if the blighted area does not redevelop, then people move away. The city is trying to be proactive with this area so that it does not become a cancer that spreads.

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I think the Target has a better chance of survival than does the Home Depot. The EXPO should really be in the SouthPark area instead of this area.

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I just thought you guys might enjoy seeing this. To the right is the Expo Design Center. This map shows the development's relationship to the greenway.

MidtownMap.gif

And heck, just for fun this is right beside the last map in the Elizabeth/CPCC area. You can see how they have re-routed King street.

CPCC-b.gif

Edited by appatone

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The initial numbers are out for the proposed project which now includes a 15 story condo tower!

Here is the story from this mornings Observer:

Vision for Midtown has public price tag

Developers seek $1.3 million a year to help pay for big plan

RICHARD RUBIN

Staff Writer

Developers want $1.3 million per year from the local government to spark the long-discussed rebirth of the moribund Midtown Square area.

Without that help, developers say, it would be hard to produce much more than a run-of-the-mill shopping center amid parking lots.

But with a public kick-start, developers say they could build a $116 million urban playland a la Phillips Place, complete with a rare second-floor Target store, a 12- to 15-story condominium tower, two parking decks and a faux Main Street lined with restaurants and small shops.

The mixed-use project would replace the mostly dead Midtown Square mall near uptown Charlotte, developer Peter Pappas told Mecklenburg County commissioners on Wednesday. He asked for a 20-year commitment of $1.3 million a year.

Pappas said stores could start opening by early 2007.

The city-county investment would yield a $1.3 million net increase in tax revenue in the first year, he added.

Most of that would come from sales taxes, but Pappas' calculations assume that all of the shopping will be an addition to the economy, not a shift in existing shopping patterns.

Developers said they hoped the project would draw central Charlotte residents who now drive to Targets in the suburbs. Some proposed pieces would likely draw people from outside the county and region, such as the Carolinas' only Home Depot EXPO Design Center, an interior-decorating store.

Charles Teal of Pappas Properties said in an interview that it would be difficult to figure out how much of the sales tax revenue would be new.

City officials are already examining those numbers, said assistant city manager Ron Kimble.

"It's a great project, conceptually, and now we have to analyze very carefully the financials, the pro formas and the estimates they're showing in their data," he said. "And that's what we're going to do."

The Charlotte City Council will get an update on the project Monday evening.

Pappas' sales pitch on Wednesday wasn't just financial. He emphasized the connections to surrounding neighborhoods and, most importantly, the ways his project would complement the county's Little Sugar Creek Greenway.

The development's main street, which would intersect both Kings Drive and Independence Boulevard, would include several connections to the greenway. Some restaurants would feature terraces overlooking the greenway. And the greenway -- which will eventually stretch to the S.C. line -- would be a major selling point for the condominiums.

City and county officials haven't worked out a detailed plan yet, but the annual government contribution would probably be designed to cover the costs of the project's two parking decks.

The decks make the Target and the more dense development possible. And Target draws other stores.

"With Target, automatically the phones start ringing," said John Collett of Collett & Associates, which is handling the retail leasing.

The city and county are already investing heavily around the Midtown Square site.

Last year, the county paid Home Depot $7.5 million for land along the greenway. City plans call for spending $6.9 million on a series of public improvements, such as reconfiguring intersections and ramps to Interstate 277.

In the past year alone, the city and county have promised to sponsor two other major private projects: the redevelopment of Elizabeth Avenue and the transformation of the old convention center into an entertainment hub.

The details always differ, but the basic concept is the same: Governments use new tax revenue from a project to help the project itself, but keep enough money to experience a net gain.

Commissioners praised Pappas' ideas.

Democrat Dumont Clarke said it was clear that the public help would create a better replacement for the empty cinema and aging mall.

"But for the participation by the county and the city, you would not have the quality of project that I would like to see complementing the greenway," he said.

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Someone had mentioned in a different forum about hearing of a "mud rule" limiting building height outside of 277. If Pappas is proposing a possible 15floor tower then the rule must not exist, unless of course they are looking for special re-zoning.

Secondly, I am having trouble seeing the true scope of this project. How large of a project (block wise) are we seeing here. How will the layout of this project relate to the Elizabeth Ave. project? Will they connect? Will this create one big recreated neighborhood? I only ask because they mention the intersections of Kings and Independence in the article meaning this project will certainly exceed the current Midtown site.

Thirdly, There is a ton of retail space now being proposed for the Center City with Midtown, Eliz. Ave., and the old Convention Center. Not to mention all of the other various retail buildings throughout the center city. Do you think developers might be over building retail. I know the Center City is truly lacking in retail, but with the current projects proposed that just seems like a lot of space to fill.

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The East Park project in Elizabeth and the Midtown Redaux will be not be connected, except for the sidewalks on Indepdence Blvd. They will be about 3 blocks apart.

As far as the proposed subsidy, please keep in mind that this is the developers intial pitch. They naturally are asking for as much as they possibly can. The city and county staff are pouring through the details now to come up with a recommendation as to how much the city/county should subsidize, if any at all.

My initial impression is that it is highly unrealistic for Pappas to expect a 20 year commitment. For comparison, the East Park and old Convention Center projects have about 6 year commitments from the city/county.

Edited by uptownliving

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As expected, Charlotte City Staffers did not like Pappas Properties intial proposal, saying they were asking too much. The issue has now been sent to committee to see if a deal can be worked out with the developer.

Details from today's Observer:

Developers' request for public support for the Midtown Square development does not fit within the city's normal financial framework for such deals, said Tom Flynn of the city's economic development office.

Generally, the city does not use all of the property taxes generated by a project to pay for public improvements around the project, such as parking decks.

But Pappas Properties wants $1.28 million a year from the city and county for its urban center near uptown, about $100,000 more than the project would create in new property taxes.

The complex, which could open by 2007, would feature a second-story Target store, a Home Depot EXPO Design Center, small shops, restaurants with views of the Little Sugar Creek Greenway and a condominium tower.

Developers and city officials are still working out the details, and the issue is now headed for a city committee.

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does anyone have the origanl rendering of this project from when it was announced 3 years ago? I am just curious so that we can compare when the next rendering comes out.

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It's a tiny picture, but I think this is it. I have a feeling the new proposal won't be nearly as impressive as the old one.

Midtown%20Square%20(proposal).jpg

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Here are some more details on the Midtown Project, including an aerial schematic.

August1004%252832a%2529.jpg

To orient you...the bottom of the pic is Kings Drive...in the middle road bisecting Kings is Independence Blvd. The road running along the top is Kennelworth St.

Before the project starts they are going to reconfigure some of the area streets:

-Independence will be realigned to intersect with Kennelworth and be directly connected to the 277 off ramp. Currentlly the road curves to the right after crossing Sugar Creek and takes you back to 3rd St.

-The Baxter St bridge will be taken down. Baxter St will end in the new development connecting with the main street.

-A new bridge and connector road will be built about 200 feet south of the current Baxter St. connecting Kings Dr and Kennelworth.

On the riight hand side is Phase I which is expected to start constrction in 2Q 2006. Currently on this site is the abandoned Charlottetown Cinemas.

Phase I is composed of:

95,000 sq ft Home Depot Expo

135,000 dq ft Target (above EXPO)

870 space parking deck.

Home Depot EXPOs have a market penetration of 125 miles. That compares with 20 miles for the typical Home Depot.

While Phase I is being built the Greenway will be developed as well. You can see the greenway in the pic as it runs along Sugar Creek.

Phase II will be built across Independence Blvd from Phase I and will consist of:

28,500 sq ft Restarants overlooking the greenway and downtown skyline.

138,000 sq ft Retail along the "main street"

92,000 sq ft Office

92 Unit 12-15 story Condo Tower overlooking the greenway.

1050 space parking deck.

Edited by uptownliving

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is that deck parking in phase one? and is that a free standing wendys?

thanks for the site plan, sad to hear construction is so far away now.

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Yes and yes...that is a parking deck in phase 1 and that is a free standing wendys which is currently there in operation. I think the reason that construction of this is still 2 years out. is becasue they want the road reconfigs done first...to ensure good connections with 277.

Edited by uptownliving

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Right, I know the Wendys, but was thrown off by the creek being shown without asphalt over it. To me it looked like a new building instead of the existing one. I wonder if the street heading to the target/depot wil be lined with shops in the parking deck or just cars.

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The Mecklenburg Co Commision voted tonight to have County Manager Harry Jones negotiate a deal with Pappas Properties and Charlotte to come up with a possible deal for the Midtown recevelopment. All the commisioners voted for it except for Bill James....who said that Midtown was "overpriced swampland"

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Leave it James. That guy has to be the most anti urban person to hold office in Charlotte. I really like this proposal though. I wonder if Wendys wont sell its property or is asking too much. When will road work begin I wonder?

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Thanks for the updates. Its tough living in Raleigh now. I like it here a lot, but being from Charlotte I still follow developments more closely than most who still live there.

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