The project team behind the Elmwood Crossing development are seeking to modify their master plan for the former Children’s Hospital campus. Ellicott Development and Sinatra & Co. Real Estate are asking the City Council to amend the previously-approved Elmwood Crossing PUD that set development standards for the reuse project. The most significant changes would be the removal of plans for a large grocery in a mixed-use building planned for W. Utica Street and rehabbing a residence at 187 Bryant Street rather than demolishing it.
The first two phases of Elmwood Crossing, The Pardee at Elmwood at Bryant and the EduKids building on Hodge Avenue, are complete. People Inc. is currently renovating the former maternity building at 140 Hodge Avenue into 40 apartments. Future plans call for apartments, condominiums and townhomes; a hotel, retail and restaurants; health and wellness space; a gallery; office space; and site improvements including pathways and green space. It is anticipated that the mixed-use redevelopment project will reuse more than 90 percent of the existing building space on the site.
From the project application:
The request to amend the Elmwood Crossing PUD is intended to respond to the changes to the proposed development that has occurred over the past several years. Most significantly, a larger grocery component no longer is feasible, resulting in the elimination of some of the waivers sought previously. Further, after discussions with the community, the Applicants have decided to maintain the primary structure at 187 Bryant Street. Upon further evaluation, 187 Bryant Street has been determined to be a viable structure for renovation and there has been great community support for this home to remain, rather than be demolished. The green space that was going to be located on this property has been redesigned into a pocket-park. The pocket-park is thoughtfully designed based on multiple iterations of community feedback.
The development team details its future plans for the project:
188 West Utica (Townhomes)
The proposed plan includes the construction of up to 20 for-sale townhome units in three distinct linear blocks. Each of the townhome units will be three-stories in height, consistent with the scale of the surrounding neighborhood. The front elevation, with urban rowhouse design cues, will include an elevated main entry for guests, while the rear elevation will include resident access through a two-car garage with private patio space above, accessible off the main living level on the 2nd floor. The exterior of the townhomes will include large window openings, and a mix of high-quality materials such as stone and precast elements, along with cement board siding.
204 West Utica (Mixed Use Building)
This new, four-story, mixed-use infill building will be programmed for retail use on the ground floor, and site on the site of a former grocery story and surface parking lot. The commercial size will be approximately 45,000 sq. ft. with up to 60 upper floor residential units, over three floors. The design concept will provide a residential vocabulary on its upper floors to complement the surrounding neighborhood, while also catering to the commercial tenants’ needs for vibrant main entryways, and extensive glazing on ground floor.
This building will include a pedestrian connection to the Gallagher parking ramp at 489 Elmwood Avenue. This building will create something new for the neighborhood, while respecting what currently exists. Upper residential floors will step back, softening the impact on the street and neighboring properties, and communicate an approachable, pedestrian feel. While still in concept, the design intent is for a modem infill with a mixture of materials including glass, metal and fiber cement panels and wood elements to warm the building’s appearance.
Former MH and D Buildings on Hodge Avenue and Annex Building on Bryant Street (Apartments)
The former MH, C, D and Annex Buildings date back to the early 20th century, are eligible for Historic Tax Credits, and listed on the National Register of Historic Places. As such, there are limited exterior improvements that can be effectuated given the requirement to comply with the applicable guidelines of the Secretary of Interior’s Standards for Historic Preservation. Through the process of converting these former hospital structures into residential apartments include up to 120 units, exterior work will be limited to window repair and replacement as needed, masonry repair and repointing, new modem entrance features, exterior signage and lighting, and other temporary installations and landscaping.
Former Variety and Tanner Towers, Alfiero and C Building Complex (Mixed-Use)
The former Variety Tower, Tanner and Alfiero Buildings will be redeveloped into a mixture of uses. Much of what was known as the C Building Complex will be demolished to create a new vehicular entryway and courtyard on the north side of the complex. The former Tanner Tower will include 1st and 2nd floor commercial space and up to sixty (60) residential apartment units on the 3rd- 9th floors. While limited in what can be done to modify the exterior of the Tanner Tower, as the building is Historic Tax Credit eligible, the exterior will be given a fresh look through signage, exterior lighting treatments, landscaping and other temporary features. Several architectural cues from the former Tanner Tower will be referenced in the redevelopment of the former Variety Tower exterior.
The former Variety Tower will include 1st and 2nd floor commercial space with hotel reception, lobby, amenity and back-of-house space. The 3rd – 6th floors will include hotel guestrooms, the 7th floor will include a health and wellness space, and the 8th – 10th floors will include upscale residential condominiums. Unlike the former Tanner Tower, the exterior treatment of the former Variety Tower will be fully transformed. The massing of the new exterior will identify the three distinct uses of the building. Considering the mass of the building, and taking advantage of the desire for residential terraces, recessed balconies have been introduced at the southwest comer and along the south and north facades. This strategy lightens the top of the building, while providing spectacular space and views to the residents.
The hotel room floors are the main body of the structure, where a multi-dimensional cladding would be utilized and penetrated with horizontally oriented glazing and metal panel, referencing the mid-century ribbon windows on the east and west elevations of the former Tanner Tower. The base of the former Variety Tower is comprised of a two-story colonnade. These levels will engage the public as an entrance and hospitality area. This space will be transformed to create an elevated intermediary space between the public and the structure on the south elevation. The zone enhances the experience into the hotel as well as provided opportunity for an intermingling between activity at the pedestrian level and the occupants.
The former Alfiero building on the east end of the “core campus” will be redeveloped into commercial space. The building will be re-clad and modernized in concert with the former Variety Tower with an alternate color and material palette to visually separate it from the adjacent towers giving it a stand-alone identity and entranceway.
489 Elmwood Avenue- Gallagher Parking Ramp
The project will include improvements to the existing parking ramp.
The project team is also seeking to allow Skyline Signs on both the Variety Tower building and parking ramp (below).