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General Urban Kitchener Updates and Rumours - Printable Version

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RE: General Urban Kitchener Updates and Rumours - Owen - 06-09-2016

(06-09-2016, 09:34 AM)panamaniac Wrote:
(06-09-2016, 09:12 AM)Viewfromthe42 Wrote: Was at the Tall Building Urban Design Guidelines meeting last night (I'm going to start calling it The BUDGie, for the acronym, and because our ability to accommodate tall buildings and to do them well is a canary-in-the-coalmine of sorts for our urban fabric.

After the roundtables, where people had voted on 8 facets of The BUDGie, and discussed the table's top 3 in detail, the main areas of concern were around public and private open spaces, massing and scale, fitting into local context, architecture, and safety. One table's consensus was that tall buildings should start with boulevard sidewalks, then greenway buffer, then public park, and if you could actually fit a building onto the remaining parcel surrounded by this massive buffer, well it didn't really need to be more than 4 storeys, did it? (note: The BUDGie concerns only structures of 9+ storeys) I was also a bit shocked that a resident living across from Google felt that 1Vic was too tall for the area, and even Google's expansion was a bit massive, even if the preservation of much old building was appreciated. There was some nodding when I mentioned that with GRT/IONy the /GO Bus/GO Train/Greyhound/VIA/Regional Roads with highway access/potential high-speed-rail, King and Victoria should be the densest, tallest place in the region. Still, I was left with the feeling that a lot of people in the area have the mindset of wanting to be close to the amenities of downtown, but don't want neighbours that don't live the same as them (fake-itecture was something the developers and architects at my table lamented, but many other tables seemed to champion).

Online information can be found here and comments submitted to Dayna.Edwards@kitchener.ca, and further consultations will happen this year, with the initial draft coming in July.



I'm so disappointed that I didn't know that this meeting was taking place.  Your post and the article in the Record make the meeting sound like the first salvo in a coming battle between developers and the old SFH neighbourhoods of the core.  I hope I'm wrong about that.

By the way, what is "fake-itchture"?

I was there last night as well - this is actually (finally) the progression of the City Council ask for tall building guidelines that resulted from my objection to Momentum's 100 Victoria in fall of 2014.  I happened to be sitting beside a Toronto developer at my table, and he commented that the trouble with developers is that they are almost always focused inwardly at the site because of the financial pressures involved - there is no incentive to look outwardly from a dollars and cents perspective.  (This is certainly what I experienced, and what many of you have commented on re: other developments - i.e. kings crossing and it's interface with King st.)  Ultimately, our table's primary comment was on the importance of consideration of context in terms of scale, massing, architecture and compatibility (and by context we don't mean preserve the old or try to fit in with 'fakitecture', we simply mean: Think - plan - and design - for what's going to be on the other side of the property lines, and even the extended area).   Overall I was impressed with the direction the city is taking - instead of operating in a policy vacuum where developers have a free-for-all, Kitchener is going to be way ahead of the game by having clear guidelines in place so that proposed developments have fewer objections when they make it to the public meetings and council.


RE: General Urban Kitchener Updates and Rumours - tomh009 - 06-09-2016

(06-09-2016, 06:49 AM)panamaniac Wrote: Edit:  570 News says the purchaser of the building is Jay Shah.  High tech, I believe, no?

Hello, neighbour!  Smile Yes, Jay is in our building.  Co-founder of BufferBox, currently at Google.


RE: General Urban Kitchener Updates and Rumours - Viewfromthe42 - 06-09-2016

I have to rent a car to pick up my FedEx today *because* BufferBox got shut down Sad


RE: General Urban Kitchener Updates and Rumours - panamaniac - 06-10-2016

Although I would like to be able to put this in the "Retail" thread, I'll just note here that the former Kabel's building (37 King St W - most recently occupied by Artisan Zone") has been leased and work appears to be underway on the inside. Has anyone heard what will be moving in here? I think this is the most attractive storefront in the whole Downtown.


RE: General Urban Kitchener Updates and Rumours - tomh009 - 06-10-2016

Another article about the Budd's sale:
http://www.therecord.com/news-story/6716197-new-owners-of-budds-building-excited-about-downtown-kitchener/


RE: General Urban Kitchener Updates and Rumours - panamaniac - 06-11-2016

(06-10-2016, 09:44 PM)tomh009 Wrote: Another article about the Budd's sale:
http://www.therecord.com/news-story/6716197-new-owners-of-budds-building-excited-about-downtown-kitchener/

How about a new floor (or two) on top for offices (à la 8 Queen) if the building could bear the weight; retail shops (at least 2) on the main floor; and a pub or restaurant in the basement, with entrance on Hall's Lane (if the 8 Queen/Goudies Lane thing is successful)?


RE: General Urban Kitchener Updates and Rumours - panamaniac - 06-11-2016

(06-10-2016, 11:01 PM)BrianT Wrote: It looks like there are plans for the Howard Johnson's site on Weber Street East in Kitchener. http://dailycommercialnews.com/The-Company/Projects/Daily-Top-10/

I don't see any info about the HoJo site in your link.


RE: General Urban Kitchener Updates and Rumours - rangersfan - 06-11-2016

Further details on this potential development at 1333 Weber St can be found here :


http://www.waterlooregionconnected.com/showthread.php?tid=539


RE: General Urban Kitchener Updates and Rumours - rangersfan - 06-11-2016

More details on the sale of the Schlichter's Automotive building, looks like they plan to gut the building and replace the facade. This will be somewhat disappointing news for us hoping for a complete redevelopment of the site in the near term.
http://m.therecord.com/news-story/6716281-long-running-auto-shop-calls-it-a-day


RE: General Urban Kitchener Updates and Rumours - KevinL - 06-11-2016

Sounds like the Ontario Street leases would be too troublesome to clear out in the short term. I still can't see the building standing for more than, say, 5 years.


RE: General Urban Kitchener Updates and Rumours - Lens - 06-11-2016

""It's a pretty impressive building. We've been looking at this property for a while."

Rakic hopes to have the building renovated and ready for new tenants by late fall. They'll build a new facade and gut the interior, he said."

It's NOT an impressive building but it might be able to generate some income in the short term I guess.

Vanguard Developments is also doing the Walter st. midrise which is a bit of a yawn architecturally and it looks like they have a few other projects coming:
51 Scott Street http://vanguarddevelopments.com/51Scott.html
72 Erb Street http://vanguarddevelopments.com/72Erb.html


RE: General Urban Kitchener Updates and Rumours - panamaniac - 06-11-2016

I'll be happy for now as long as they get rid of the metal chimney.


RE: General Urban Kitchener Updates and Rumours - GtwoK - 06-11-2016

(06-11-2016, 03:34 PM)Lens Wrote: 51 Scott Street http://vanguarddevelopments.com/51Scott.html

Oh god. This can't be real, can it? What a terrible, terrible use of a central downtown property, surrounded by 10 storey buildings on 2 sides. This looks awful.


RE: General Urban Kitchener Updates and Rumours - panamaniac - 06-11-2016

(06-11-2016, 05:58 PM)GtwoK Wrote:
(06-11-2016, 03:34 PM)Lens Wrote: 51 Scott Street http://vanguarddevelopments.com/51Scott.html

Oh god. This can't be real, can it? What a terrible, terrible use of a central downtown property, surrounded by 10 storey buildings on 2 sides. This looks awful.

But those rooftop balconies are kind of Euro-awful, don't you think?  Wink


RE: General Urban Kitchener Updates and Rumours - GtwoK - 06-11-2016

The Erb St project is not bad for the area, though, being right at the end of Willow and opposite the 2 apartment towers.

On a somewhat related note (and because I have no idea where else I would ask this), does anyone know the story behind the "demolition face", as my girlfriend and I have taken to calling it? It's the stern face of a man with a goatee (if I recall correctly) that gets spray paint stenciled in black on buildings that have been emptied and left for demolition. Was wondering what it meant / who it is that's doing the stenciling. Examples that come to mind at the moment are the house at the end of Willow (the site of that Erb St project), the house on the future lot of 155 Caroline, and a building out in Breslau, at Victoria / Fountain.