Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Trinity River Developments

  • LaGrave Field Development Plan: Fort Worth Cats owner Carl Bell has put his development plan on the fast track. "Bell plans 1.5 million square feet of space for offices, restaurants, shops and other service-related retailers. There will be about 850 residential units, he said. Closer to the ballpark, there may even be a mid-rise condo tower, and perhaps a hotel, he said. ... As a part of the deal with the city, Bell agreed to build 15 percent of the planned residential units, or about 125 units, as affordable housing, giving middle- to lower-income families the chance to live there." My take: 1) How long until this comes together? I look at the photo above and think 20 years. 2) Affordable housing, eh? Why does it always seem like development throws in the idea of affordable housing but it takes so long to come around? Is it the lure of the big payday from luxury developments is too strong? What I really wonder is this: are there really enough fat wallets around to absorb all of these high-end residential developments in the downtown area?

  • TCC Design: I'm a few days late, but Mitch Schnurman did a great column on the Tarrant County College campus design. Basically, Schnurman throws his support behind the design of Vancouver architect Bing Thom and his sunken plaza design. "Thom's design for a campus entry does what it aims to do: dramatically and elegantly, it turns the Trinity River into a vital part of civic life downtown. That's design job No. 1. It also recognizes that there are much better places for the kind of plaza that [Ed] Bass wants to see, including in the middle of his Sundance Square district, about four blocks to the south. Finally, the Thom design brings a bold new architecture and attitude to central Fort Worth, just when the city is trying to stretch beyond its traditional styles and borders. So why hire a world-class architect to do a groundbreaking project and then change his design?" Well put, Mitch. But don't count out Ed and his billions. If he doesn't get his way, I'll be shocked.

    Bernie said...

    Thanks for the article, Mr. Schnurmann... I really enjoyed it.

    I was a little surprised when I read it the other day, but very happy, to see a voice from the Star-Telegram take issue with Bass' meddling on this one.

    Pete said...

    I propose a letter-writing campaign to the TCC Board letting them know that they and the City of Fort Worth are big boys (and girls) now and can plan their spaces for themselves.

    I agree that it's ballsy of the Startlegram to publish something that's even vaguely critical of our saviours the Bass Family. Now let's support that courage by showing the TCC Board that we do care about how our city is developed!

    And Steve, I'm down for a beer anytime! I'll be at the weigh-in at PCB tomorrow around 12:30 or so. I'd like to go over to Rahr after that, but right now I'm playing it by ear.

    Steve-O said...

    I'll be there for the weigh-in tomorrow. I'm loading up tonight though.