Tuesday, September 20, 2005

701 L Street

701 L Street
31-Stories, 430 Feet
233K Office Space
10K Retail Space
70-80 Luxury Rental Apartments

Developer: Danny Benvenuti, Tower Development
Architects : Hellmuth, Obata and Kassabaum (HOK)


The conversation I has with Erik on the Firestone Building reminded me of this proposed development. The first think I though was: damn, how could I have not written on this one yet?. The reason I say that is, it could very well be the most important proposal out there...at least in the top 4 or 5 out of the dozen of so out there.

Why do you ask?

Well, it's proposed at the current site of the Greyhound Station at 7th and L Street . As you may know, the Greyhound has stood as a drunken, drug dealing, loitering, police call ridden location in downtown. From reports I have heard, this corner receives more police calls than any other location in Sacramento..by a wide margin. The city (and lots of other people) has been trying for YEARS to get the Greyhound moved, and they might just get that wish.

My thinking is that getting rid of this might just possibly help downtown streets and K Street become a little safer for the thousands of condo buyers just blocks away as well as the ones in the works.

Plus, it's a sharp looking building. HOK does great work.

This combined with the proposals for K Street (I really need to write that one as well!) could turn the worse couple blocks in downtown into the best ones.

In a move that really shows the intent of the property owner to get this done, Tower Development officials said that the company would self-finance the project. That is HUGE. You RARELY ever see a developer put so much of their own money into a project. My "sources" tell me that Benvinuti has made big strides over the last couple of weeks to get the Gryhound moved. Hopefully we can hear more in upcoming weeks. Any new development would hinge on the Greyhound finding a new place to move. My guess is somewhere on Richards Blvd before it ultimately ends up at the new Intermodel Station years from now

The idea of a public market at the Greyhound, like Pikes, came up the JKL meetings. I really like the idea, but not sure where they could put it now that a building will be put here.

Now the bad news. Preservation groups has said that they want to keep the Greyhound station as is.

Are you kidding me?

Of all the buildings that we could choice to save, this is easly the last one I would choose. If any of you have taken a walk by the station (Make sure to bring a gun) there are ZERO historical features on this building. It's a piece of junk.

I cannot see them winning this one though. These preservation groups were once a powerful force for redevelopment official to deal with, but now they have almost lost all creditability with the city with their insisting to save any old building without regard to the merit of it's real historic value, economic feasablity or it being able to be used in an efficent way.

Building we need to make sure never get torn down are buildings such as the First National Bank at 7th and J, Elliott Building (now the East End Lofts), Julia Morgan Building (Now the Sheraton), Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament, Elk Tower, Cal West Building, even the Berry or Marshal if they can renovated without falling apart and put to good use (I think those are nice looking buildings with BAD uses), I could even MAYBE begin to hear arguements for parts of K Street. ..those are just off the top of my head

Just because it's old, does not mean it's historic..let's repeat.. Just because it's old, does not mean it's historic

This is the same group that wanted the Biltmore Hotel saved because there was part of a staircase (or something minor like that) that was "historic" Developer Dean Ingmanson wanted to build apartments and ground floor retail on that site. Preservationist were able to stop him with the backing of the city council. I think the council today fully realizes they made a mistake with that decision. To see what I mean, please take a drive on J Street between 10th and 11th.
Just because it's old..okay, you get the idea.

Fortunately, John Saca has purchased the site and is planning a condo tower. The other side of that street, equally as bad (maybe worse), is planned for a 23-story condo tower by St Anton and The Cordano Company.

Okay, I'm ending my rant now. Hopefully we hear more in the upcoming weeks and months

Article on 701 L Street



Robert Casey said...

You are using a Sacramento Bee graphic without authorization. Please remove from the site immediately.

Robert Casey
The Sacramento Bee

LivingInUrbanSac said...

Hello Robert -

My apologies. Would you be able to give me what is acceptable and what is not?

Anonymous said...

Seems like such usage on a non-commercial site, would fall under the fair use doctrine. Hmmmmm.