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asonj23

Main Library Progress

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I found a great website with construction photos of the Main Library progress.

This being Auchter Construction's main projects site, you will find some great up to date photos and information on sites including:

The Strand & Peninsula

Fidelity National Financial

Riverside Avondale Partners

Vila Riva Condominiums

The Watermark Condominiums

1661 Riverside

Ocean 9 Villas

...etc

and one very interesting "The 1800 Club". I have not heard anything about it and I can't find info on the locaiton.

Anyways, just thought I would share a great find.

- Cheers!

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awesome website. those are some great aerial photos they have in there. i wonder if they used cypix's ballons, or helicopters or what...

the rendering of fidelity's campus (without the big garage) helps paint a better picture of their vision. it still looks sadly suburban on a site-plan level, but i guess that makes sense considering how large the site is, and given that this is only phase one. even though the two new buildings are only midrises, i think they will have a very big impact on the skyline as "fillers."

rendering.jpg

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1800 Club is being built in Miami.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Thanks Lakelander. Too bad that couldn't be an addition to our skyline.

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Am I the only one who thinks that the owl statue adds a cartoonish quality to the new library. I like the artwork, but I think it would look better if it were smaller and inside in the lobby of the main library. Too bad they didnt use some of the money spent on the "art" to buy better materials for the facing of the building.

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I like "Wisdom". And even if it does look cartoony, that's ok. Don't we want kids going back to the library? Why not make the building a little more fun? And it's not some weird contemporary geometric art either. That would suck, lol.

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The new library looks good in those aerials. I like that it fully encloses the block on four sides. Is anything planned for the parking lots behind it?

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^Not that I know of. I wish there was! That's a great location; Main Street, the new library, Hemming Plaza nearby. It's so unimpressive to drive by ugly parking lots. Some mid-to-high rise residential towers would be great in that area.

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I believe that the lot directly across Main St. from the library is going to have bus parking and some park-like landscaping. It not going to take up the entire block though.

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I believe that the lot directly across Main St. from the library is going to have bus parking and some park-like landscaping.  It not going to take up the entire block though.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

You are correct. The current plans call for a pocket park.

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I think the "pocket parks" are such a silly idea. How about creating fewer, larger parks (i.e. a whole city block) or how about maintaining the parks we already have (i.e. Confederate Park and Springfield Park)? It is just a half-assed approach that wastes good land which could be otherwise developed.

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I think the "pocket parks" are such a silly idea.  How about creating fewer, larger parks (i.e. a whole city block) or how about maintaining the parks we already have (i.e. Confederate Park and Springfield Park)?  It is just a half-assed approach that wastes good land which could be otherwise developed.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I agree with you in that we need to maintain the parks we have. I believe we are missing out on a tremendous opportunity with Confederate Park. With some renovation, maintenance and a name change, that could be a great asset for Downtown and Springfield--better connecting the two neighborhoods together. When I see Confederate Park I think of how Houstonians use their "river" (which compared to ours is a creek) and the banks of it as a place to jog, walk dogs, have picnics, throw Frisbees, etc. BUT-- that doesn't mean we should not plan for pocket parks. I believe that portion of each and every new development (and redevelopment) should include green space that can be enjoyed by people that work Downtown (eat lunch outside without walking too far to other parks) and people that live Downtown. These pocket parks don't need to be big, but should include lush landscaping, flowers, comfortable seating and public art. Paying attention to the details that improve quality of life will only fuel future development in Downtown.

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Yeah, I love the pocket parks. They're refreshing, among all the buildings. Without them, we'd have NY density (as if downtown even has that kind of demand...) and skyscraper canyons. Yuck. My favorite pocket park is the one near the Florida Theatre.

But you're right about the big parks. They're like the elephant(s) in the living room.

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I think pocket parks can be great things, when placed in the right locations. For example, the one across the street from the Florida Theater works well. However, the one on the corner of Broad and Bay doesn't really add to its surroundings.

Its also very debatable if we really need a pocket park only a block away from Hemming Plaza. The need for green space could easily be solved by making the sidewalk along Main a little wider, and adding shade trees, thus creating a linear pedestrian corridor. An RFP, for a small, yet urban project, could then be issued for the site where the pocket park was planned. Depending on the depth, bus parking for the library could be built behind, the potential project facing the library and Main Street.

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I love Hemming and spend a great deal of time out there, but I do think we could support another park close to it, especially one with grass. There is no place in Hemming where you could throw down a blanket, bask in the sunshine and read a book.

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I love Hemming and spend a great deal of time out there, but I do think we could support another park close to it, especially one with grass. There is no place in Hemming where you could throw down a blanket, bask in the sunshine and read a book.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

That is where a Skyway extension into Riverside would be great. You have two major parks that easily serve that need.

I myself enjoy enough range to toss a frisbee to and fro and Memorial park offers that wonderfuly and with a river view that's unbeatable as well.

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Am I the only one who thinks that the owl statue adds a cartoonish quality to the new library.  I like the artwork, but I think it would look better if it were smaller and inside in the lobby of the main library.  Too bad they didnt use some of the money spent on the "art" to buy better materials for the facing of the building.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Better materials... better how?

Just wondering. I'm not a fan of the brick color if thats what you mean.

The owl and all public "art" going into libraries and new public buildings comes from an ordinance passed in 1997. The ordinance requires that three quarters of one percent (.075 %) of the construction costs of eligible public building projects be dedicated toward the purchase of public art. To date nearly $3 million has been generated for projects.

Personally, I think thats a sweet deal. Some of the art is amazing, and some is not my speed, but hey, thats why they have 31 flavors.

I just came from the Jazz Fest Press Conference, some pretty big jazz names coming April 7-10. Its nice to be in an art-forward city. Since I've been here things have changed dramatically downtown and in the cultural landscape. All positive. Just some thoughts... ^_^

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I meant better materials like using some sort of real stone facing instead of concrete and ugly brown bricks. The public art is a good idea in theory, but in practice we end up with subsidizing bad artists who cant sell their stuff to the general public. I am biased though because I prefer classical art and architecture and that is not in vogue among the art establishment (probably b/c it takes too much talent to create).

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