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PROPOSED: iQuilt Pedestrian Enhancements

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The rocks are apparently a very..... VERY hot topic and there were annoying people trying to derail everything over the rocks while in the meeting.

the iquilt people are trying to placate the "art" lovers by actually reaching out to the artist on hw to handle the boulders. anyways, as of now they are exactly where they are now, but just contain a water feature"reflecting pool" that is not currently there.

so we will see, this is the least concrete of all plans

I appreciate art in many forms. Rock art of the type on Gold Street, i don't get. The street is a waste of space. Removing it is like addition by subtraction. This IQuilt project is really exciting, interesting, and I'm shocked by the ambitious nature of it.

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The rocks are apparently a very..... VERY hot topic and there were annoying people trying to derail everything over the rocks while in the meeting.

Carl Andrade was commissioned by the City of Hartford back in the 1970's to create a sculpture for the piece of park land it now sits on. Andrade was paid about $100,000. Much to the displeasure of city officials who were expecting something much more for that amount of money, Andrade showed up with a large truck and began unloading and arranging boulders in a pattern on the triangular shaped plot. Outrage at City Hall followed while the art community defended Andrade.

It was a hot topic back then and apparently still is.... :)

By the way, the city was so displeased, they refused to pay Andrade until the artist threatened a lawsuit for much more than the original agreed price.

Edited by Luca Brasi

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If I am seeing this project correctly, Hartford is once again dong something great but doing it half-assed.

What makes a linear park or pedestrian greenway work is the shops and restaurants that line it. As the project is now drawn, there are no shops or restaurants, no outdoor cafes, to give the iquilt a sense of place. Nowhere to stop and have a drink or meal or just browse.

Hartford repeats this mistake over and over. Just as there was no housing at Constitution Plaza or Front Street, to make these projects self sustaining, the greenway needs a reason to be.

The same mistake was made at the waterfront. Their needs to be kiosks of a restaurant or cafe to make the riverfront plaza a living place.

Look at the decking over I-84. No cafes, no shops, no sense of place, just a dead space.

As I said, the concept is promising. But if you just extend the park it becomes a green dead space.

Hope I'm missing something because this project is missing something - big time.

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If I am seeing this project correctly, Hartford is once again dong something great but doing it half-assed.

What makes a linear park or pedestrian greenway work is the shops and restaurants that line it. As the project is now drawn, there are no shops or restaurants, no outdoor cafes, to give the iquilt a sense of place. Nowhere to stop and have a drink or meal or just browse.

Hartford repeats this mistake over and over. Just as there was no housing at Constitution Plaza or Front Street, to make these projects self sustaining, the greenway needs a reason to be.

The same mistake was made at the waterfront. Their needs to be kiosks of a restaurant or cafe to make the riverfront plaza a living place.

Look at the decking over I-84. No cafes, no shops, no sense of place, just a dead space.

As I said, the concept is promising. But if you just extend the park it becomes a green dead space.

Hope I'm missing something because this project is missing something - big time.

not to be a dick, but what are you basing this off of?

the entire concept is about creating exactly what you speak of. and as a business first guy surely you understand that they can lead the horse to water but they cant make the horse open a cafe on the park.

the intention is to make all of the affected areas attractive to the business community as places to open the exact cafes you speak of, they are even having the wadsworth move their bookstore and cafe to the travelers plaza side, and the whole gold street area is for kiosks and such. you can not count on me recounting every word of a 2 hour presentation, but I hope from the massive ammount of sharingf I did that the plan is inline with todays urban ideal.

their HOPE is that the nin developed spaces alog these paths will endeaver to face the street and open appropriate businesses.

hell the park alone will now have a waterfront/in the park resturant, an ice cream.snack shop, a skate shop, and just on gold a jazz club, a greenhouse resturant, kiosks and a cafe in the travelers plaza. but additionally they are expanding sidewalks so 55 on the park can actually hold an eatery, and vitos/salute can expand.

this whole thing is still open to public debate and fluid, so do not judge, get involved and improve.

but worse, a judgement without full understnading is just silly

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I totally agree with beerbeer's post. I'm totally for this, and totally for most anything in the city.... if it's done right. Most of the time, the city screws it up. I'd almost rather have nothing done than a bunch of half-assed nonsense. Good post, beerbeer.

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not to be a dick, but what are you basing this off of?

the entire concept is about creating exactly what you speak of. and as a business first guy surely you understand that they can lead the horse to water but they cant make the horse open a cafe on the park.

the intention is to make all of the affected areas attractive to the business community as places to open the exact cafes you speak of, they are even having the wadsworth move their bookstore and cafe to the travelers plaza side, and the whole gold street area is for kiosks and such. you can not count on me recounting every word of a 2 hour presentation, but I hope from the massive ammount of sharingf I did that the plan is inline with todays urban ideal.

their HOPE is that the nin developed spaces alog these paths will endeaver to face the street and open appropriate businesses.

hell the park alone will now have a waterfront/in the park resturant, an ice cream.snack shop, a skate shop, and just on gold a jazz club, a greenhouse resturant, kiosks and a cafe in the travelers plaza. but additionally they are expanding sidewalks so 55 on the park can actually hold an eatery, and vitos/salute can expand.

this whole thing is still open to public debate and fluid, so do not judge, get involved and improve.

but worse, a judgement without full understnading is just silly

What an exciting idea!!! I can understand how people are concerned that the city isnt doing enough on the business side of things but really what the city should be doing is providing places for businesses to open up. And by having riverside seating areas, more pedestrian friendly areas that span the area from the city into the park, then you cant go wrong. These the exact types of places that businesses should be looking to open up in. NOw, hopefully the great ideas continue to be implemented and this plan begins to come to fruition. The worst that could happen would be that the bureaucrats decide to pull back funding or change the ideas into something lesser. Fingers are crossed here.

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not to be a dick, but what are you basing this off of?

the entire concept is about creating exactly what you speak of. and as a business first guy surely you understand that they can lead the horse to water but they cant make the horse open a cafe on the park.

the intention is to make all of the affected areas attractive to the business community as places to open the exact cafes you speak of, they are even having the wadsworth move their bookstore and cafe to the travelers plaza side, and the whole gold street area is for kiosks and such. you can not count on me recounting every word of a 2 hour presentation, but I hope from the massive ammount of sharingf I did that the plan is inline with todays urban ideal.

their HOPE is that the nin developed spaces alog these paths will endeaver to face the street and open appropriate businesses.

hell the park alone will now have a waterfront/in the park resturant, an ice cream.snack shop, a skate shop, and just on gold a jazz club, a greenhouse resturant, kiosks and a cafe in the travelers plaza. but additionally they are expanding sidewalks so 55 on the park can actually hold an eatery, and vitos/salute can expand.

this whole thing is still open to public debate and fluid, so do not judge, get involved and improve.

but worse, a judgement without full understnading is just silly

What an exciting idea!!! I can understand how people are concerned that the city isnt doing enough on the business side of things but really what the city should be doing is providing places for businesses to open up. And by having riverside seating areas, more pedestrian friendly areas that span the area from the city into the park, then you cant go wrong. These the exact types of places that businesses should be looking to open up in. NOw, hopefully the great ideas continue to be implemented and this plan begins to come to fruition. The worst that could happen would be that the bureaucrats decide to pull back funding or change the ideas into something lesser. Fingers are crossed here.

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not to be a dick, but what are you basing this off of?

the entire concept is about creating exactly what you speak of. and as a business first guy surely you understand that they can lead the horse to water but they cant make the horse open a cafe on the park.

the intention is to make all of the affected areas attractive to the business community as places to open the exact cafes you speak of, they are even having the wadsworth move their bookstore and cafe to the travelers plaza side, and the whole gold street area is for kiosks and such. you can not count on me recounting every word of a 2 hour presentation, but I hope from the massive ammount of sharingf I did that the plan is inline with todays urban ideal.

their HOPE is that the nin developed spaces alog these paths will endeaver to face the street and open appropriate businesses.

hell the park alone will now have a waterfront/in the park resturant, an ice cream.snack shop, a skate shop, and just on gold a jazz club, a greenhouse resturant, kiosks and a cafe in the travelers plaza. but additionally they are expanding sidewalks so 55 on the park can actually hold an eatery, and vitos/salute can expand.

this whole thing is still open to public debate and fluid, so do not judge, get involved and improve.

but worse, a judgement without full understnading is just silly

What an exciting idea!!! I can understand how people are concerned that the city isnt doing enough on the business side of things but really what the city should be doing is providing places for businesses to open up. And by having riverside seating areas, more pedestrian friendly areas that span the area from the city into the park, then you cant go wrong. These the exact types of places that businesses should be looking to open up in. NOw, hopefully the great ideas continue to be implemented and this plan begins to come to fruition. The worst that could happen would be that the bureaucrats decide to pull back funding or change the ideas into something lesser. Fingers are crossed here.

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As local government administrator, I like the plan. Here is why! Because already from the get go, there appears to be both a public-private partnership with Travelers and the City funding this study. Cities cant do it alone - revitalizing downtowns and economies. Public- private partnerships will help make this project successful. Many of you speak of making the City of Hartford more business friendly. This is true. But developing a relationship and collaborating with business community, and developing a strong partnership to complete said project will be successful. Cities, like Hartford, have amused me, over the years, they dont seem to learn, the simply dump a billion dollars in to a downtown, and expect it to flourish. The City has to run is city hall like a business, but do what citizens expect it to do well. Meaning, provide the best public services, invest in its people, hire the best finance director, the personnel director, pay the superindent and so on. Until then, the business community will see Hartford more attractive to them. Businesses arent going to make investments in the community, unless they feel they are going to get a return on there investment, not caught up in political scandal. This project will be sucessful unless City gets some stakeholders in the project, like Travelers, the MDC, the Bushnell, and the Wadsworth.

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I am not bashing this plan. I said I think it is great.

However Hartford has a long history of NOT following urban planing basics, I mentioned the I-84 deck, CCP, etc.

Unless the greenway is lined with shops, restaurants, coffee houses, it will be just another dead green space.

As I said, urban environments must create a sense of place, an active mixed used reason to exist. At the present, there is no solid plan that meets these basics. Or perhaps, that's phase two, another dreaded Hartford phrase.

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from the HBJ yesterday,

This is why this project will work. There is so much attainable funding from grants public and private...

its art, its culture, its green, its public works, its job creating, its local, state and federal

win win win win win win win

Hartford’s iQuilt wins $150K NEA grant (posted Yesterday at 2:54pm)

Hartford's iQuilt project to link the city's cultural attractions and landmarks is the recipient of a $150,000 federal arts grant, authorities say.

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I'm glad that the Gold Street area, which seems to be the most resolved element right now, is a top priority. I always thought that street needed to be straightened and aligned with Atheneum Square.

In the aerials below, notice how Gold street looks like a road running through a suburban office park. Notice the two odd pieces of useless land on opposite sides of the street. One parcel is the lawn next to Busnell Tower. The other is filled with boulders.

It looks like the concept would join these odd parcels into one rectangular shape.

What should be done with the rocks?

Would this be a good site for a farmer's market?

post-6896-0-84802900-1308234394_thumb.jp

post-6896-0-46822000-1308234411_thumb.jp

looking at the more finalized plans for Gold, I think they are heading in the right direction. I am glad to hear that corner of lawn in front Bushnell on the park is not owned by the condo. it has allowed them to make this plan work and to have the road point directly at the capital dome creating nice sight lines. The rocks are staying because some people love that stuff, but hopefully people will interact with them, and well we will see what the final plan is. But I don't se this making a huge difference until the Travelers Plaza is also done. thats really the draw to that area in their plan and this park extender would reach its potential only after having bookends.

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The plan was developed not because so much is wrong with downtown Hartford that it needs to be "fixed" or "saved." It was developed because so much is right that needs to be completed, connected and leveraged in order to make Hartford economically competitive.

Edited by Nick Pirce

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Its nice to see this get started.

Phoenix, for all of their financial issues, at times poor management, rediculous loss of value for shareholders has been a great citizen for Hartford.

they gave most of the Adriens landing property away, built the bridge over Columbus and have basically let us all walk on their roof for years...

now they are making it grassy!

I hope they stay independent and recover and prosper.... for Hartfords sake

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Hartford is doing their Envision fest this weekend.

Their goal is something like 30,000 people downtown!!!

Pipes in the Valley has been growing every year as people find out about it. Last year there were over 7000 attendees.

assuming continued growth, we can expect many more this year due to the additional advertizing from the city and the co-promotion with envisionfest.

even still the city is looking to bring an extra 22K people or so. Holy smokes!

the event looks interesting enough and I know I will be in line for a free tour of the Soldiars and Sailors Arch as well as a view from the Travelers observation deck.

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Across the street at Bushnell Park, the sidewalk has become a promenade. It's a fairly dramatic difference. Here are some before/after photos

horacebushnellpromenade2.jpghoracebushnellpromenade6.jpg

Edited by beerbeer

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