Latest planning board agenda is online and there’s a lot — and I mean a lot — that will be discussed. I’m going to be updating this post as more information comes online, so this first draft is a sort of “here’s what we know” going into the meeting.
A. No surprise, the Ridgewood student housing project (the address has been updated from 1 Ridgewood to 7 Ridgewood) is up for discussion once again. The project needs a “certificate of appropriateness” from the Ithaca Landmarks Preservation Council (ILPC) since it’s in the Cornell Heights historic neighborhood, and things are not looking all that auspicious, given the recent report from the Ithaca Journal. The planning board would likely give approval with stipulations if the ILPC approves the plan, but that’s a very big “if” at this point.
B. The downtown Ithaca Marriott. This site is the triangular parking lot next to the Commons at Aurora Street, and has been covered in detail both here and at IB. The history here goes back five years, back when it was going to be called the “Hotel Ithaca” (now the name for the former Holiday Inn). This one has been stalled since the fall due to financing issues, but that has been taken care of in the past couple of weeks and they want to start construction ASAP. They have several changes that need to be reviewed since they have completed “value engineering” (a phrase I fear, since it’s the pretty way to see they cut back on material costs and design features), so we’ll see what this will look like. The current proposal’s rendering, at 10 floors and about 160 rooms, is below.
C. Likewise, the Stone Quarry project was also approved a while back in the fall of 2012, but only now managed to secure funding. Here’s the previous discussion here, and here’s details from IB. The project, slated for a parcel on Spencer Road where Ithaca Taxi Dispatch keeps a parking lot, will bring 35 units of INHS-run affordable housing. This one is also up for re-approval for value engineering reasons, and looks to start construction early this fall.
D. 140 College aka the John Snaith House addition, discussed earlier this week here.
E. “205 Dryden Road, Student Housing, Jagat Sharma – Sketch Plan” — Now here’s something new. 205 Dryden is the Kraftee’s Building. Jagat Sharma is a prolific local architecture firm, responsible for many of the larger apartment buildings in Collegetown. I can’t seem to find the owner from the tax records, which indicate the current owner has been the owner since 2004. Jagat Sharma tends to be a favorite architect for Ithaca Renting/Jason Fane, and Lambrou Real Estate, but neither of them seem to own the parcel from what I can tell (it’s possible one of them does, but the upstairs units are not rented). Novarr-Mackesey owns three parcels next door, but I don’t see anything on their website either. Regardless, this falls in a Collegetown MU-2 zone, 4-6 stories, and 45-80′ in height. Whatever is proposed here is going to be pretty big, comparable to Josh Lower’s Collegetown Crossing project.
Edit: Jason at IB tells me it’s owned by Pat Kraft, the guy that runs Kraftee’s.
F. Speaking of which, 307 College, aka Collegetown Crossing, has a new sketch up for review as well. With the new zoning guidelines, the current version isn’t doable because it impedes on the lot to its east. So this version will have a 9% smaller footprint at least, but parking will no longer be an issue. For the record, here’s the site, and the old design.
G. “Downtown Hampton Inn Hotel, Scott Whitham – Sketch Plan” – Another re-do of sorts. This one appeared in its original form in December 2012. The original proposal, proposed by Neil Patel (his family members are the ones developing the hotels off 13) was for a 6 story, 92-room, $16 million hotel that would have demolished the Carey Building, and the original design was by Jagat Sharma. Scott Whitham is another local architect, so given the revised space constraints and the new architect-of-record, the design of this will be something completely different. Although hopefully it doesn’t involve tearing down buildings the developer doesn’t own.
H. 314-320 E. State Street, the Carey Building addition – discussed earlier this week here.
In sum, there’s a lot of stuff going on all at once. I’ll update as it all plays out, and documents and renders become available.
UPDATE 1: The new design of the Stone Quarry apartments:
Due to concerns with how the soil will settle on site, the walkways and elevations of the buildings have been altered. Each townhouse now steps 8 inches going north to south, which makes the middle ones look a little misshapen. The soil issue also forced a re-do of the ends of the apartment building, since it couldn’t be graded as originally planned. On the cost-cutting end, balconies have been replaced with windows, the south facade of the apartment building was tweaked, some of the trim has been removed or down-valued on the Spencer Road side of the townhomes, and a few more windows punched in on the sides of the townhome end units. there’s a few tweaks to the site plan as well, which can be found at the link above.
UPDATE 2: Here’s the proposed Hampton Inn, details here. The new hotel would be built on the parking lot behind the Carey Building. The proposal calls for six floors, 120 rooms, and 2,000 sq ft of retail/restaurant space, with only about 9 parking spaces on site. The entranceway would be via a driveway between the Carey Building and the Eagles Buildling, which I imagine being a bit of a logisitical nightmare at the moment, given that the Carey Building has its own renovations underway and additions planned.
UPDATE 3: Up next, revisions to 307 College Avenue, Josh Lower’s Collegetown Crossing project. Nothing fundamentally different here, but the design has definitely been tweaked. Full details here. The revision reduced the number of apartments to 43, with 98 bedrooms (previous was 103). There would be five retail spaces on the ground level of the six-story, 63’4″ structure. The size and scale of this revision fit comfortably within the rules of the new Collegetown MU-2 zoning of the parcel.
UPDATE 4 (6/5/14): The updated design of the Marriott has been released, and will have its own special planning board meeting on June 10th. Apart from updated Marriott signage and some materials tweaks, this one has virtually the same design as the original, which has me breathing a sigh of relief. Perhaps this one will start construction in July after all.