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Atlanta firm plans $40M apartments

95 posts in this topic

Downtown project includes 325 units, 500-space parking garage

Read more: Atlanta firm plans $40M apartments {sodEmoji.|} Orlando Business Journal

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A four story apartment complex at this location is disappointing.

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Makes sense in density. Keep the core high rise and transition into midrise.

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I guess it kind of depends on how big the complex is going to be. Camden Orange Court across the street is 4 stories. To the extent that Camden is mostly fronting Orange Avenue, this new complex will mirror Camden on the other side of Colonial. I hope it gets built.

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What is even more disappointing than the height is the lack of retail. I would love to see some retail in this area. With this and Camden across 50 from it the need for more restaurants and retail in this area will only be growing. The apartments north of here lack retail and there are only like 4-5 restaurants within a short walk of here.

4 stories does seem kinda short for this area but compared to the other buildings on the north end of Orange Ave near this it will fit in. I would prefer it to be at least 7 stories though, strange that such a high traffic area can't get a little taller building with some large signs on it. This will look much nicer than the ugly buildings that now dot this block.

Once this and 7s across the street are built this will be a nice filled in area of town.

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As of right now, Camden has made some slight design changes to all the retail spaces fronting Orange Avenue. Not sure why, but either way, it doesn't appear that a single retail unit is being rented at Camden. Having a second apartment building may help with this. I think a major concern at this intersection would be pedestrian safety. They have to do something to make it safer so people want to cross the street there and at Magnolia by the 7 Eleven.

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One of the only ways to make this safer for pedestrian traffic is to narrow and reduce lanes. I don't think city leaders are willing to take on such a controversial issue, but there is no question that Colonial needs some urban revamping. Orange is much too wide along this stretch as well.

Are there any renderings available?

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As of right now, Camden has made some slight design changes to all the retail spaces fronting Orange Avenue. Not sure why, but either way, it doesn't appear that a single retail unit is being rented at Camden. Having a second apartment building may help with this. I think a major concern at this intersection would be pedestrian safety. They have to do something to make it safer so people want to cross the street there and at Magnolia by the 7 Eleven.

I believe they are taking their retail and making it into apartments, since the retail wasn't renting.

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One of the only ways to make this safer for pedestrian traffic is to narrow and reduce lanes. I don't think city leaders are willing to take on such a controversial issue, but there is no question that Colonial needs some urban revamping. Orange is much too wide along this stretch as well.

Are there any renderings available?

There is a rending on the paid version of the story in the OBJ but not on the free one. IMO Orange and Magnolia both need to be re-done as two way streets. This would improve downtown traffic flow and help make it safer. Colonial Drive through this area does need to be fixed up but the new traffic signals do make it easier to cross here and make it look nicer.

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Makes sense in density. Keep the core high rise and transition into midrise.

I agree to an extent - but there are several taller office buildings to the North.

More importantly, south of Colonial we are limited by the historical and residential areas of Parramore and Lake Eola Heights/Colonialtown. "Hospital to Hospital" should be utilized with the greatest thought to density and going vertical. This will also directly affect ridership on the proposed LYMMO expansion and SunRail.

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I have mixed feelings about this one. The fact that it's only 4 floors is a little disappointing. On the other hand, the idea that someone is interested in putting another 300 units on the downtown Orlando condo/apartment market is reassuring -- confidence in this market seems pretty much shot, so this is a glimmer of hope and maybe a sign of turnaround. Someone mentioned in another thread that this is the kind of projects we should focus on ... The non-high-rise infill projects. This seems somewhere between the high-rise development. If it was 4 floors and 150 units, it would be more like infill. 4 floors in 300 units sounds like a pretty significant project.

All in all, any development in or near the downtown core is exciting for me. It's all about striving toward critical mass .. that point where downtowns just grow constantly on their own merit. It may not be a new tallest, but another 500-1000 people living on Orange Ave will certainly help bring about that desired retail/commercial recovery that Downtown Orlando so desperately needs. Maybe no retail is a good thing? Lots of empty store fronts still dot the streets of downtown.

I'm optimistic.

Edited by castorvx

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And it's not like there aren't a ton of vacant lots available for when the pace of development picks up. I actually prefer Orlando to mainly be human-scale, walkable, mid-rise structures dotted with high rises here and there. Also, every building doesn't need retail. It is actually a smart move on the developer to not include it here since there are way too many vacant spaces right now. Although I do feel this intersection would be a prime spot for a retailer to place a tremendously visible flagship store. Well, there is always the other side of Orange.

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I think this area is being held up by the waste of real estate called the Orlando Sentinel. They need to sell that property and move to a smaller location. Maybe in another 10-20 years?

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Absolutely. That parcel is nearly half the size of the entire CBD.

Edited by prahaboheme

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I do like the critical mass of rental units in the Uptown district which desparately needs more density and streetwall unity.

Edited by prahaboheme

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Yes. And the storefronts of Camden Orange Court have been redesigned as I stated earlier. I rode my bike by yesterday afternoon and the doors still look commercial in that they are all glass with a metal frame. I think they are still going to be retail. They could probably use a small convenience store for that apartment complex.

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I think this area is being held up by the waste of real estate called the Orlando Sentinel. They need to sell that property and move to a smaller location. Maybe in another 10-20 years?

I agree completely and had hoped with the financial turmoil at Tribune they would decide to sell the extra space sooner rather than later. Originally, they had a much smaller footprint along both Colonial and Orange and there were shops all along both strips (there used to be a Phillips 66 station there on Colonial with the most dynamic neon sign that I still miss after all these years). I hope the newsroom stays where it is but I can't imagine the rationale for production and distribution at that location, particularly given how many fewer "dead tree" subscribers there are now.

Given there's not really much you can do with Colonial, I do think Orange Avenue needs to be reduced to two lanes through there to increase pedestrian activity - if FDOT would allow it (Orange is a state road), I would like to see most of that traffic rerouted down Garland and Hughey back to I4 (although the eventual widening of I4 may kill that idea). As it is now, I walk almost everywhere downtown and I find that whole stretch totally unappealing to spend time in.

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I think they would have sold parts or all of the land if it were not for the real estate meltdown. After Zell acquired the tribune, I figured it would happen soon. I guess not soon enough.

If Orange ave is going to be modified, I think now is the time. I know it is a State decision but I beleive there are a lot of property owners that would support the change. The residents of College Park and Winter Park may have a different opinion though.

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Speaking of College Park - if memory serves, wasn't Edgewater a state road that the city took ownership of? I don't remember details but I believe that happened and we all can see the continuing positive result of that change.

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And it's not like there aren't a ton of vacant lots available for when the pace of development picks up. I actually prefer Orlando to mainly be human-scale, walkable, mid-rise structures dotted with high rises here and there.

I agree completely. Big chunks of NYC and Chicago are 3 - 5 story buildings, including some of the most memorable areas like Little Italy, Harlem, or Wicker Park. Almost all of Miami Beach. Dinkytown around the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis. Just about all of Europe is 6 stories or less. Those are some examples that come to mind, I'm sure there are plenty more. While I love a good skyline, an area doesn't need high rises to be iconic and to have good pedestrian traffic.

Then again, those places are always lined with shops and restaurants. Citrus, the Virgin Olive Market, and the Japanese place seem to be doing fine though, so maybe it's just a matter of time. There will always be room to add that later once there's enough demand.

They could probably use a small convenience store for that apartment complex.

Maybe with more North Orange developments and Creative Village close by we'll see another urban Publix around that area in a few years?

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One Publix in downtown is enough. Trader Joe's please.

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Slightly off-topic, but a small grocer is needed near the core, in my opinion. Publix is a pain to use without a car if you live in 55 West, for example. An east-west Lymmo route may fix that.

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This doesn't help 55 West, but as far as Camden, Park Lake or any this new project goes, both Publix' are 1 mile away from Orange and Colonial. The Lake Eola location would be a nicer walk through the CBD and around the lake, with the option to take the LYMMO for a third of the trip (we're only talking 0.3 miles...)

Links 28, 29 and 30 all run between Colonial & Garland to Colonial & Semoran with 30 minute intervals for all 3 of those routes, (I believe). At 436 they go different ways and the bus that you're on would matter if you want to keep going. I don't think it works out to perfect 10 minute service, but since we don't see three buses in a row all the time, you should be able to get on and get off within 15 minutes from your whim.

Frankly there's not a whole lot that someone needs that doesn't fall right on 50 between Garland and 436 between Publix, Colonial Plaza & Fashion Square Mall.

It's just a matter of branding that corridor with signs and LYNX marketing it. The only thing they cant do is paint the buses since those get rotated out.

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Theoretically, that sounds good.

One of the problems with Lynx on Colonial is that two of the three run at the same time and sometimes all three leave Lynx Central Station at the same time. If you miss the bus, you've missed them all. There are no shaded benches except for the one at Fashion Square / Smokey Bones. They need a shaded stop at the Rosalind stop across from the 7 Eleven because it is heavily used... again, that is the Orlando Sentinel's property that looks like it is in distress. Also, sometimes the Colonial busses are so packed that you cannot get on one. When this happens, it is possible that the other busses go around the stopped bus and then you get to wait another 30 minutes in the heat. I have done this and it is slightly upsetting and then I think that I would have done better using my car, scooter, or bike. I think they should run Colonial circulators. Light rail would be ideal of course, but dealing in the realm that we live, I would be happy for circulators continually running from say OBT or John Young Parkway (Magic Mall) to Colonial Promenade.

Going a mile with groceries is a bit far to walk unless you go every single day and are only carrying one small bag. The ideal is half mile or less. You get dragged down by the load you are carrying. I walk to Publix in College Park sometimes and it is a mile. It's a tough job walking 20 minutes with 40 pounds in one hand.

They could get enough branding by having the busses running more often. If you don't see the busses regularly, it doesn't matter what signage you have on the sidewalk.

Edited by bulldogger

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Slightly off-topic, but a small grocer is needed near the core, in my opinion. Publix is a pain to use without a car if you live in 55 West, for example. An east-west Lymmo route may fix that.

I completely agree with this. The other grocer is on Church Street at Terry Avenue. I've been in there and they have a good meat selection, but the rest is pretty slim. It isn't very clean and some people may consider it not very inviting. It's actually very close to you at 55W.

map to Sy's Supermarket

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