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daniel nudnik

"condos - too cool or too many?"

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Condos -- too cool or too many?

Friday, March 18, 2005

By Chris Knape

The Grand Rapids Press

GRAND RAPIDS -- Behind the "for sale" signs, optimism and the salesmanship of an impending downtown housing boom is a tinge of doubt.

While developers are publicly optimistic about their projects, some are privately concerned about saturating the downtown residential market too quickly amid a rush to build hundreds of condominiums.

At least nine developments, including several that emerged over the past month, are in the works.

They range from modest renovations of small commercial and apartment buildings to major skyline-changing projects.

Read More: http://www.mlive.com/news/grpress/index.ss...16080939830.xml

Moderator's Note: Please post the link unless you are telling us you have permission from the Grand Rapids Press. Summaries of articles are fine; posting entire articles is not. Sorry, but we have had to start cracking down on this. Please feel free to contact one of the moderators if you have any questions regarding this.

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I have been seriously considering moving downtown. The more reasonable rates at the old Union HS redevelopment really have me interested. I also think that as that neighborhood matures with the American Seating / Israel's / Widdicomb Building developments there will be a lot of backfilling towards downtown. Not sure if I am ready for a move yet, but within the decade I will be living downtown.

More intersting though is how large River House (hate the name) will be. I was not aware that it was slated to at minimum surpass Amway and perhaps Plaza Towers. Would be funny if GR was home to the first and second tallest residential buildings in the state. It is also good to hear that Moch actually still has a plan - a more reasonable one. I still don't trust the guy, but as long as he is talking there is a chance.

I would put money on Tol backing out soon. Especially now that most of the bids for the City Center site will be competitive with his palns.

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i am quietly involved with both those projects and have a deposit down for a union square condo.... depends on the size and layouts availble, they are pretty small.~ 900sq. w/ alot of add-on features...pool gameroom...= higher asso. fees.

the riverboat condos were going to be tooo expensive and have parking issues i hear....

i'm sure there will be a poin t in the near future when these people realise nobodys going to pay $300k with outside parking for 1000sq and no food stores....

give me an acre in ada and a nice pre-fab house so i can take a naked shower on the patio off my master suite

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Damn, the press has a picture of the River House. I can't find it anywhere, but it really needs to get posted here. It looks like it will dwarf Bridgewater.

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I wish the press would drop mlive already and get its own web server. That website is great at eliminating content - especially important images.

Damn, the press has a picture of the River House.  I can't find it anywhere, but it really needs to get posted here.  It looks like it will dwarf Bridgewater.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

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Supernova, go to http://www.mlive.com/grpress and click on "Page One". You should find it under Friday. I would grab it and post it but my computer at home is Acrobat challenged...

Joe

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Yeah...me too....maybe someone can scane the hard copy from the press and place the image on this sight.

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very striking design for riverhouse. my feeling is it will create a wacker-drive type juxtaposition against the water. speaking of buildings on the chicago river, I hope that river house is going to put something at street level besides parking and an entrance. gotta keep the mixed use going to get anywhere...

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Here is the scanned image. It's still doesn't give a real good view though. I emailed Grooters to ask if they had more images of the project.

scan.jpg

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I'll tell you what. This is waaaay more than expected. Not only does Grooters seem serious, but he seems to really want to up the ante downtown. We need developers like this to kick the others around a bit and raise everyones expectations.

I hope that if this is built, as well as the twin 15 storey Icon on Bond buildings, and the 24 storey hotel, and the other major developmenrts, people here may actually start thinking that Grand Rapids is more than a small town. I am of the school of thouht that the city is only as big as it appears and popular opinion will reflect this. If Grand Rapids begins to look big, we might begin to think big.

The list of current and likely developments here is stunning. It is quite possible that by this time next year there may be no less than six to eight large cranes on the skyline putting up substantial buildings.

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I'll tell you what.  This is waaaay more than expected.  Not only does Grooters seem serious, but he seems to really want to up the ante downtown.  We need developers like this to kick the others around a bit and raise everyones expectations. 

I hope that if this is built, as well as the twin 15 storey Icon on Bond buildings, and the 24 storey hotel, and the other major developmenrts, people here may actually start thinking that Grand Rapids is more than a small town.  I am of the school of thouht that the city is only as big as it appears and popular opinion will reflect this.  If Grand Rapids begins to look big, we might begin to think big.

The list of current and likely developments here is stunning.  It is quite possible that by this time next year there may be no less than six to eight large cranes on the skyline putting up substantial buildings.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

This would be the most development I've ever seen in Grand Rapids, granted I'm not that old.

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I think that with future oil realities given the rising growth and consumption of natural resources by China, India and other developing nations...new urban paradigms will have to be created. One such paradigm will be that sprawl is bad and density is good. Density produces much more efficient use of Energy and infrastructure than sprawl. Job centers of employment will need to become less sprawled as well. The resultant will be the rising property values in central core cities as demand shifts inwards and not outwards. Unfortunately, the rising property values and property taxes will push the poor out to the suburbs. Hence, in about 25 years, the suburbs will be for the very rich and the poor.

I think speculating or investing in core properties is a very wise long term investment.

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I think that with future oil realities given the rising growth and consumption of natural resources by China, India and other developing nations...new urban paradigms will have to be created. One such paradigm will be that sprawl is bad and density is good. Density produces much more efficient use of Energy and infrastructure than sprawl. Job centers of employment will need to become less sprawled as well. The resultant will be the rising property values in central core cities as demand shifts inwards and not outwards. Unfortunately, the rising property values and property taxes will push the poor out to the suburbs. Hence, in about 25 years, the suburbs will be for the very rich and the poor.

I think speculating or investing in core properties is a very wise long term investment.

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I read a study that the younger generations (pre baby-boomers) are moving in faster rates to the cities while the older generations live in the 'burbs. Most of it has to do with the fact that younger generations don't normally follow what their parents did (as in, live in the suburbs, with a 3 bedroom house and 2 baths in Walker, MI) More and more people will move into the cities based on current trends, and studies that have said younger people don't want to feel alone, and isolated by the suburbs, they'd rather be closer.

As for me? with condos starting at $95,000 in GR, thats definately a very very good starter residence for a person just starting out (Like me)

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