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The future of Union Corners

What are the things that puzzle, enrage, delight and tickle you as you go about your life in Madison?

Re: The future of Union Corners

Postby Henry Vilas » Tue Jun 19, 2012 7:53 pm

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Re: The future of Union Corners

Postby barney » Wed Jun 20, 2012 9:02 am

I renew my call for a trader joes or Metcalfe's to build on that site.
There is a lot of money not that far away (maple bluff, Emerson, etc.)
Please, please, please!
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Re: The future of Union Corners

Postby Henry Vilas » Tue Jul 31, 2012 7:38 pm

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Re: The future of Union Corners

Postby rabble » Tue Jul 31, 2012 11:26 pm

The proposals are here.

I'm not sure how I managed to link to a proposal rather than the city page with all the proposals, but let me try that again.
There. That's better.
Last edited by rabble on Wed Aug 01, 2012 9:45 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The future of Union Corners

Postby Stebben84 » Wed Aug 01, 2012 8:39 am

I liked CD Smith and Gorman's proposals which had a nice town square feel. I thought the other three sucked.

It's nice to see they all included a grocery except for the Radiance plan which I thought was the worst of all. Light manufacturing? Really? Also, they proposed a foot bridge and a rain garden. Woopdy fucking do.
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Re: The future of Union Corners

Postby Big_Sister » Thu Aug 02, 2012 7:15 pm

Um....I don't think I need to write 5000 words here.

I just suggest that perhaps we combine two topics and put a/the "public market" (in addition to other things) at Union Corners.
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Re: The future of Union Corners

Postby fennel » Thu Aug 02, 2012 7:47 pm

Big_Sister wrote:Um....I don't think I need to write 5000 words here.

I just suggest that perhaps we combine two topics and put a/the "public market" (in addition to other things) at Union Corners.

I would second that – if there were a second and third market. A central market would be practical only for people who live downtown (unless the amazing bus system became far more amazing). An eastside/Union Corners' location would serve east and north (depending on parking / bike routes / bus system amazingness.)

A near-west side location might serve the west and south, with the same caveats.

I think Soglin's suggestion is interesting if we're thinking about having a single anchor marketplace. But, wherever the market(s) are located, they need to be accessible, with priority given to consumers.
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Re: The future of Union Corners

Postby snoqueen » Thu Aug 02, 2012 9:54 pm

I'm very impressed. We have top-notch proposals from four good, experienced companies. Off the top of my head, I thought Gorman really did their homework, and for them to submit another proposal after losing the 800 E Wash project to a TIF rejection at the last minute shows optimism and confidence in Mayor Soglin's administration. I thought CDSmith had too much surface parking (so did Livesey/Stonehouse IMO). Communities by Design courageously went out on a limb with the public market concept and it deserves real consideration. Livesey-Stonehouse already has (have) an excellent local portfolio that shows they understand the scale and appearance of projects that work in Madison. I like the idea of townhouse residential units (shown in several proposals) because they relate well with the existing adjacent neighborhood.

For those who want to download the pdfs of all proposals from the link given above, here are the pages to open so you can look at overviews of the four designs side-by-side. I want to spend more hours on this before I write my 5000 words. (I hope I don't, actually.)

Community by Design: page 3
Livesey-Stonehouse: page 39
Gorman Company: page 1
CDSmith: page 80

Each company's presentation style is so different it helps to find a common starting point, and the aerial overviews work best for those of us who, like me, are of a visual nature.

I can't figure out what Radiance is trying to say, except that they want lots of environmentally-progressive features which are pretty much SOP these days. Why they didn't go to the trouble of presenting something in SketchUp, which is free software, beats me. But someone is sincere here and I don't want to trash them, especially since the wishes of the neighborhood will carry weight as the process unfolds.

Regarding a neighborhood market: While the market on the square is one of the oldest and best in the nation, neighborhood markets are increasingly strong in Madison. The east side market by Wil-Mar is remarkably popular, the north side has a terrific market on Sundays, Monona has one, and there are plenty more. The littler markets offer urban people a chance to form relationships with individual farmers and growers, which is a big part of the whole idea of direct produce marketing. I like the idea of another small-to-midsize market at Union Corners, particularly given its great transit and car access.

Making an addition to the bike path system so people from both sides of E Wash could easily and safely reach the UC project would be smart.
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Re: The future of Union Corners

Postby Dust Mite Rodeo » Thu Aug 02, 2012 10:06 pm

The dog and I vote to make it an unregulated dog park.
Oh wait. That's what it is. Excellent. Carry on.
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Re: The future of Union Corners

Postby narcoleptish » Fri Nov 02, 2012 11:33 am

Looks like it's Gorman.

http://host.madison.com/wsj/news/local/ ... f887a.html

Good luck with that. Guy who hates dealing with Madison and hates using his own money on a project. He's looking for almost 15 million in TIF and these exceptions from a previous article:

Both proposals need exceptions from a city rule that limits TIF awards to 50 percent of new property taxes generated during the remaining life of a TIF district. Gorman wants 182 percent and Livesey/Stone House 67 percent......Gorman would also need exceptions for refusing a personal guarantee for TIF assistance and refusing to be personally liable if the project defaults. Also, Gorman wants to purchase the land in phases and is offering to sell, not donate, a library site.


I'm a little shocked that their plan doesn't rely on federal tax credits. I guess with that much TIF they can deviate from normal procedure.
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Re: The future of Union Corners

Postby Stebben84 » Fri Nov 02, 2012 1:26 pm

Regardless of the politics involved, I thought their plan was the most attractive:

http://madison.legistar.com/View.ashx?M ... 09E31EA8D5

I also liked their resume of work. The Livesey plan looked like crap IMHO. It didn't have that town square feel the Gorman plan did. I could give a shit if Gorman is hard to work with. I'm not dealing with them. That's why we elect city officials.
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Re: The future of Union Corners

Postby rabble » Fri Nov 02, 2012 2:51 pm

I'm about ten or fifteen minutes walk from that place so I'm pretty interested in how it turns out and I can live with this proposal.

That is, I don't think it will be much of an obstacle between me and the Malt House. Except that there probably won't be any place to sit at the Malt House.
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Re: The future of Union Corners

Postby snoqueen » Fri Nov 02, 2012 3:54 pm

I'm left wondering if the Livesey/Stone House people think Gorman's proposal will fail to obtain the financing he needs, and Livesey then will be the next candidate to receive review. They are taking a gamble, but if it works they'll save their company a nice chunk of money they'd otherwise spend competing head-to-head with Gorman for Union Corners.

And if Gorman gets their financing, Livesey would be out of the competition anyway. So what do they have to lose by this move?

I think it was an interesting and sophisticated play, and one not hostile to the Gorman company in any way.
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