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Old April 30th, 2007, 08:49 PM   #1221
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skyking2 View Post
For the record, I like the building and hope it gets built. I am just surprised that a bit more originality isn't out there. Whitney Gould's article in the MJS gushes, but doesn't report on the obvious similarities of The Moderne and The UCT and KT -- especially the one view that looks as though the two condo neighbors actually morphed into one. That being said, I especially like the view from Old World Third St. in front of Usinger's...pretty nice, the stark contrast of old and new.

Good luck to the visionary development team. Hope this gets done.
Talk about tough love.

I just hope that this development will lead to other 30+ story buildings (condo, retail, office, or mixed) to be built in Milwaukee.
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Old April 30th, 2007, 11:15 PM   #1222
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I like the design of the Moderne proposal. I sincerely hope that the developer really does have his ducks in a row and is ready to move forward this year.

The Ruvin proposal and the Cramer Krassalt office development, also on 3rd and Juneau are very promising proposals. Should all three of these proposals get built, the corner of 3rd and Juneau would become a design showcase in Downtown Milwaukee, the kind of place you would bring out of town visitors.
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Old April 30th, 2007, 11:48 PM   #1223
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Originally Posted by Boatnurd View Post
There is a rendering in todays Journal showing the Moderne super imposed in the Milwaukee skyline or ariel shot. Someone please post if they have that opportunity. This truly shows the importance of a tower of this magnitude at the foot of the Park East.

I love this angle.

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Old May 1st, 2007, 12:11 AM   #1224
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Originally Posted by Fiddlerontheruf View Post
I love this angle.

Looking at the new tower, it seems to be smaller than 30 stories should be. I don't believe it is entirely proportional. I've heard the base is supposed to be 8 stories, isn't that about how tall the parking garage is next door?
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Old May 1st, 2007, 01:49 AM   #1225
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Originally Posted by Bluewarning View Post
Only in Milwaukee would a tower like this be scoffed at.
Oh give me a break. Just because this is a skyscraper forum and most of us want to see nice shiny new tall buildings doesn't mean we can't view proposed projects with a critical eye. I'm not scoffing at it. I'm simply pointing out that the front-side view that was first shown is incredibly similar to UCT and Kilbourn. Now that I've seen the side views I don't think that applies as much.

I would love to see it built but how likely is that, really? There are so many proposed towers in downtown Milwaukee... it seems as though now we're just adding to the pile of likely disappointment.

Sorry to be all pessimistic but it's just how I feel. That's the point of this forum.. to talk about city development - no matter how you feel about it.
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Old May 1st, 2007, 02:05 AM   #1226
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Quote:
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The problem isn't that it's unattractive or even a bad design. I agree that it is a beautiful building. The problem is that it is WAY too similar to what's been built here in the last few years.
Eh? I can't imagine what you must think of Pier Wisconsin. Two white museums on the lakefront! Gah!
Hell, even 100 Water and Milwaukee Center. Postermodern buildings with crowns on the same street! Oh no!
The Railway Exchange and the First National Bank, two Chicago style skyscrapers within three blocks of each other! What were they thinking?
How about the condos in the third ward or beerline? The Gaslight, Marine Terminal, hell even proposed projects like Rivianna share a lot of designs.
Or even City Hall, the Pfister, NML, the Mitchell and Mackie...all reivival buildings downtown...God those architects had no originality.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ajknee
Plus, the Moderne is a Miami Deco building. How many of those Deco buildings down in Miami are white? They're all salmon, peach, terracotta, etc. So why would they make this one white?
I take it you've never actually been to Miami.
















Last edited by CGII; May 1st, 2007 at 02:17 AM.
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Old May 1st, 2007, 02:49 AM   #1227
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Old May 1st, 2007, 02:50 AM   #1228
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p0wn.
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Old May 1st, 2007, 07:05 AM   #1229
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CGII View Post
Eh? I can't imagine what you must think of Pier Wisconsin. Two white museums on the lakefront! Gah!
Hell, even 100 Water and Milwaukee Center. Postermodern buildings with crowns on the same street! Oh no!
The Railway Exchange and the First National Bank, two Chicago style skyscrapers within three blocks of each other! What were they thinking?
How about the condos in the third ward or beerline? The Gaslight, Marine Terminal, hell even proposed projects like Rivianna share a lot of designs.
Or even City Hall, the Pfister, NML, the Mitchell and Mackie...all reivival buildings downtown...God those architects had no originality.



I take it you've never actually been to Miami.















Gee, thanks for wasting our time with these meaningless pictures from Miami. I take it you've been there...ooooohh, we're soooo impressed. Your attempt to draw a comparison to The Moderne is weak, at best. But, thanks again for showing us pictures of your Miami vacation.

Get a grip there, CGII. You're getting wound too tight in your defense of The Moderne. It is a fine-looking building, I hope it gets built, but there's no question the architect "borrowed" some from UCT and KT...especially the east side of the building. And, wouldn't it look nice with some palm trees all around it? Just like the ones in your neat pictures from Miami, eh?
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Old May 1st, 2007, 07:07 AM   #1230
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i like those newest renderings of moderne id like to see it with the ruving building across the street that would be a cool rendering.....
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Old May 1st, 2007, 07:21 AM   #1231
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i like those newest renderings of moderne id like to see it with the ruving building across the street that would be a cool rendering.....
Let's take bets on what actually gets built. I've never seen so many proposals floating around. Either that's a good sign, or there's been a run on hot air. I still say more could be done to effectively position new buildings to make Milwaukee's skyline more significant. For instance, The Moderne would look great on that vacant piece of land on the Southeast corner of Van Buren and Kilbourne. It used to be a gas station years ago, and with the UCT and KT, that area could use some filling in. And, considering the elevation is probably 20-25 feet higher than down near the river, The Moderne's 30 stories would be more like 33.

Jesse 276 mentioned that the 30 stories seemd proportionately smaller in the skyline rendering. Remember, 30 floors of residential is shorter than 30 floors of commercial -- usually by a good foot and a half or more per floor! (ie. US Bank is 601 feet tall, but just 42 stories)
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Old May 1st, 2007, 07:54 AM   #1232
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skyking2 View Post
Gee, thanks for wasting our time with these meaningless pictures from Miami. I take it you've been there...ooooohh, we're soooo impressed. Your attempt to draw a comparison to The Moderne is weak, at best. But, thanks again for showing us pictures of your Miami vacation.

Get a grip there, CGII. You're getting wound too tight in your defense of The Moderne. It is a fine-looking building, I hope it gets built, but there's no question the architect "borrowed" some from UCT and KT...especially the east side of the building. And, wouldn't it look nice with some palm trees all around it? Just like the ones in your neat pictures from Miami, eh?
Ok, you just made a huge ass of yourself because

a) you reposted all those pictures when it was not necessary to do so (I used to do this, but stopped when I realized it wasn's necessary).

b) you totally missed the point of the post. Did you even read it?

c) you were a jackass for no reason
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Old May 1st, 2007, 08:21 AM   #1233
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fiddlerontheruf View Post
Ok, you just made a huge ass of yourself because

a) you reposted all those pictures when it was not necessary to do so (I used to do this, but stopped when I realized it wasn's necessary).

b) you totally missed the point of the post. Did you even read it?

c) you were a jackass for no reason
Not to be rallying to skyking's side here, but when hasn't someone on this thread made an ass of himself at least once or twice?

In this particular city's thread, we posters are so widespread in viewpoints it makes us look like the little engine that couldn't. Take a look at this particular project as an example. With one picture you had posters crying foul with distaste and slapping the building around like its a trashy design. But, once other pictures begin floating around all the sudden the viewpoints change and its all gung-ho and "hey it's not so bad".

I think people need to make up their minds on the future of this city and its projects - either you want it or you don't. And perhaps what we read in this thread is a reflection of how it is outside this forum - and perhaps that's a reason why projects and businesses get turned off. Milwaukeeians can be way too picky about what they want, and it can at times turn sour. I know that local media portrays at times the extremely negative viewpoints on developments downtown and outside downtown, and some of that trails its way on this thread. And I'd think that developers and possibly corporations look at the overall feel of things, and I wouldn't be surprised if some get turned off because we don't believe in ourselves or our potential. I mean who gives a damn about developments and new high rises when the overall belief is failure and denial of any of these getting cranes on their properties.

I absolutely find it stunning that Chicagoans (and its local media) sing more praise about Milwaukee and its metro than the hometown crowd (and media) at times.
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Old May 1st, 2007, 08:36 AM   #1234
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And this article in today's JS just further's my point - Milwaukee isn't believing in itself, and I don't think realizes its full potential. And people just go with the flow...
Quote:
Building impatience
City money is sought for several projects in the area, but existing hotel and retail owners don't want their competition to be subsidized
By TOM DAYKIN
[email protected]
Posted: April 30, 2007
More than three years after the Park East Freeway spur was torn down, 16 acres of prime downtown land remain barren - and developers say it's time for city officials to help make something happen there.

"There's gridlock right now, and I'm concerned this thing is going to blow up," said Gary Grunau, who is building the new Manpower Inc. headquarters, just north of the Park East area. "Somebody's got to show some leadership."

While several major projects are on the verge of starting in the Park East area, more help is needed from the Department of City Development, including financial assistance and flexibility on zoning, several developers say.

Instead, they say, the city has been sending mixed signals.

"The city says it wants to help some projects. But it's very unclear what that means," said Robert Ruvin, who's involved in two separate Park East development proposals.

Development Commissioner Rocky Marcoux said the city should not help finance developments that are too speculative. He also said the construction of additional offices, stores and other buildings that lack anchor tenants could create surplus space - which could hurt existing downtown developments.

"We're not interested in creating a false market here," Marcoux said.

The city is under pressure from some owners of existing businesses who don't want to be undercut by city-backed developments.

Development department officials are working on a study that will consider the effects of new downtown developments, including those in the Park East, on existing businesses and projects, such as The Shops of Grand Avenue. The study, to be completed soon, is designed to help city officials better determine which proposals should receive financial help.

Concerns about city financing for hotel projects have been raised by Greg Marcus, executive vice president of Marcus Corp., which operates three downtown hotels: InterContinental Milwaukee Hotel, Hilton Milwaukee City Center and the Pfister Hotel.

Marcus, in a March 6 letter to Mayor Tom Barrett, said efforts to "subsidize construction of hotel rooms without first stimulating demand for those rooms" will "simply siphon off demand from existing (privately financed) hotel rooms."

The comments by the developers come as a confrontation brews between aldermen and Barrett's administration over the Park East.

A Common Council committee today will consider an ordinance forcing department officials to conduct a feasibility study for providing city funds for developer Richard Curto's Park East Square project, proposed for a site bordered by N. Water, N. Jefferson and E. Lyon streets, N. Broadway and E. Ogden Ave. Development department officials have rebuffed Curto's request for city financing.

Ald. Mike D'Amato and other project supporters say Park East Square's first phase, with 129 apartments, 81,400 square feet of commercial space and a 148-room hotel, would be valued at $77.7 million.

Property taxes from Park East Square's first phase would pay back $9.5 million in borrowed city funds, along with $4 million in city interest charges, within 10 years, said Curto, who operates Chicago-based RSC & Associates Inc.

Park East Square would generate $15.4 million in property taxes over 10 years, create 310 construction jobs during the project and provide 200 retail and hotel jobs, Curto said. He said the city funds are needed mainly to build a 430-space parking structure.

Marcoux says RSC should stick with its original plan, which called for a $40.1 million first phase - and no public cash.

That smaller project, with 134 apartments and 26,800 square feet of retail space, would generate $10.7 million in property taxes over 10 years, according to RSC. It would create 250 construction jobs and 50 to 75 retail jobs.

Curto said city development officials should make "a relatively small investment" in Park East Square and other projects that would create "a tremendous payback, and help revitalize downtown."

Other developers agree.

Ruvin and David Florsheim, along with Dallas-based Gatehouse Capital Corp., want to build 20-story mixed-use project, including a 180-room Kimpton Hotel, on a block bordered by W. Juneau and W. McKinley avenues, N. Old World 3rd and N. 4th streets.

They also have proposed a 120-room Aloft Hotel and new offices for Cramer-Krasselt ad agency north of W. Juneau Ave. and east of N. Old World 3rd St.

A more aggressive approach by city officials would quicken the pace of construction, Florsheim said.

The Park East presents an opportunity that should be seized before outside investors shift their focus from Milwaukee to other cities, said Bruce Westling, of MLG Development Inc. The firm hopes to create an office building overlooking the Milwaukee River, north of E. Knapp St.

"These windows can open and close awfully quick," Westling said.

Marcoux said city officials will consider financial assistance for other Park East projects. But one key is for those developments to have anchor tenants, he said. That was an important factor when the mayor and the Common Council last year approved city help for the new Manpower headquarters.

The city has already spent $17 million preparing the Park East area for development.

Also, the council in December approved $8.8 million for The North End, Mandel Group Inc.'s $175 million housing and retail project planned for the former Pfister & Vogel tannery site, just northwest of the Park East Square site. That amount, along with the other city funds, will be repaid through property taxes generated by new Park East projects.

Mandel originally wanted more city funds, but the amount was lowered after the firm obtained federal tax credits to help finance the project, Marcoux said. He said other developers should look at such funding sources instead of just seeking city financing.

Finally, Marcoux said department officials have been very active in helping Park East proposals.

That includes recommending council zoning approval to allow projects, including the 20-story development planned by Ruvin and his partners, to be built higher than planned. Marcoux said department officials also are recommending the city lease out spaces from a municipal parking structure, at N. 4th St. and W. Highland Ave., to both the Ruvin project and for a 30-story hotel and office tower proposed by developer Rick Barrett, for the southwest corner of W. Juneau Ave. and N. Old World 3rd St.
And then ultimately some posters wonder why developers and some companies focus on suburban Milwaukee. What are some to do when the city, as the JS calls it, is "giving mixed signals". Milwaukee's suburbs are more than willing to throw out TIFs and other incentives. And I'd be the first one saying it's time for downtown to stop competing with itself.
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Old May 1st, 2007, 09:27 AM   #1235
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Park East

Ok let me set something straight.

The first thing that has slowed development down in the Park East has been the county. First by implementing CBAs and then by taking forever to sell there land. The Staybridge (city land near the park east) and Flat Iron are under construction and those were basically the only Park East parcels the city owned. Oh yea neither required a TIF!

Further Milwaukee i.e. DCD is believing more in Milwaukee than you are brewcityfan. DCD apparently doesn't believe a TIF is needed for development to happen in the Park East. apparently you do.... sounds to me like you believe less in Milwaukee.
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Old May 1st, 2007, 09:29 AM   #1236
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And again I ask what makes RSCs project worthy of a TIF? Is it the design? The tenants? The hotel operator? what?
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Old May 1st, 2007, 02:38 PM   #1237
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brewcity, don't get mad but your over-sensitive post is slightly annoying to me. There's no one here that's "against" Milwaukee... especially with regard to development.

Your argument based on the most recent unfolding of criticism over the Moderne's first released rendering doesn't hold up. Of COURSE people are going to be critical about a first rendering... especially in this forum of all places. Not to mention the fact that it's the only rendering we had to go by. When I saw it for the first time, I was shocked at the similarities to UCT and Kilbourn... still am actually. There's absolutely nothing wrong with saying that so I have no idea where you're taking offense.

With regard to being picky? Thank GOD people are picky. If we had a city where everyone did whatever the hell they wanted, we'd have a disaster. The reason why Milwaukee has made such a fantastic turnaround in the past 15 years or so is solely because people have been picky.

Like it or not, "negative" viewpoints are a necessary evil. Debate keeps things healthy and provides a reality check for all of those who live in this fantasy world of perfect scenarios.
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Old May 1st, 2007, 04:41 PM   #1238
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For instance, The Moderne would look great on that vacant piece of land on the Southeast corner of Van Buren and Kilbourne. It used to be a gas station years ago, and with the UCT and KT, that area could use some filling in. And, considering the elevation is probably 20-25 feet higher than down near the river, The Moderne's 30 stories would be more like 33.

There is currently a building under construction on that parcel
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Old May 1st, 2007, 04:46 PM   #1239
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have to say

skyking is right about that specific parcel, it should of been a bigger building.
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Old May 1st, 2007, 04:50 PM   #1240
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Ok let me set something straight.

The first thing that has slowed development down in the Park East has been the county. First by implementing CBAs and then by taking forever to sell there land. The Staybridge (city land near the park east) and Flat Iron are under construction and those were basically the only Park East parcels the city owned. Oh yea neither required a TIF!

Further Milwaukee i.e. DCD is believing more in Milwaukee than you are brewcityfan. DCD apparently doesn't believe a TIF is needed for development to happen in the Park East. apparently you do.... sounds to me like you believe less in Milwaukee.
Quite the contrary twoaday, I simply don't want to see prospective developers irked away because they don't really know the city's position when it comes to financing. Do they need to finance it 100%? Is the city going to respond to requests for assistance well? Which developments would get that assistance and which wouldn't? I can see where some developers could get a bit befuddled.

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brewcity, don't get mad but your over-sensitive post is slightly annoying to me. There's no one here that's "against" Milwaukee... especially with regard to development.
Be my guest and feel annoyed - at least my post is getting across. Perhaps the word "against" was a little too harsh, but may I use "pessimistic"?

And picky would be one thing, but I think at times we can be overly extremely picky, the wealthy kind of picky. I used the Moderne as an example because of that reason - the building was a decent design but was trashed because of similarities to UCT and KT. To really make it interesting - even with those similarities this project's developer doesn't plan yet to apply for a TIF (which people here balk at reasonably).
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