Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Old Sacramento - Gold Rush Days

I took this set late summer during Gold Rush days in Old Sacramento. I plan to have them up on my website soon, but until then please follow this link here.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Inland Begins to Layout Railyard Plan

Inland Real Estate Group who took over the defaulted railyards last October will appear before the City Council this Tuesday to discuss some of their plans. According to The Sacramento Press; Dean Stermer of Inland said that "Our primary job is to complete the work that's ongoing right now" and that “item authorizing Interim City Manager Gus Vina to appropriate $7.5 million in federal funds and transfer $1.5 million from the city's State and Federal Grant Match Project for railyards access improvements to Richards Boulevard and Interstate 5. The contract is expected to be awarded in March. The total cost of the project is estimated at more than $10 million."

The City Council meeting at 6 p.m. Tuesday will be the council's last for 2010.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

La Valentina Station Groundbreaking

Please join Domus Development, the City of Sacramento, Sacramento Housing and Redevelopment Agency, community leaders and local residents as we mark a new chapter in the life of Alkali Flats and take steps toward transforming an abandoned, blighted area into an attractive, convenient neighborhood.

With transit-friendly living and LEED designed efficiencies like net-zero energy use, projects like La Valentina represent creative new thinking in how California cities and towns can prepare for a growing population.

Confirmed speakers include Sacramento City Council Member Steve Cohn, La Shelle Dozier, Executive Director of the Sacramento Housing and Redevelopment Agency, and William J. Pavão, Executive Director of the California Tax Credit Allocation Committee. Other special guests invited.

Fresh hot espresso drinks will be available, courtesy of Old Soul Coffee. It's a tasty salute to things to come, when La Valentina brings a brand new café to the neighborhood.

When: Thursday, December 9th at 2:30 pm
Where: 12th Street between D & E Streets, Sacramento

Please RSVP to Erin Kelly at erin@domusd.com.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Township 9 granted $1.3 million

One of the few large infill projects still moving forward in the Sacramento area got another financial boost by the state yesterday; this time from the State's Housing and Community Development's Catalyst Projects for California Sustainable Strategies Pilot Program in the amount of $1.3 million. With the combination of several other grants received thus far, the project has lined up $52 million in total grants with $30 million from Proposition 1C and $20 million in infrastructure grant funds.

Township 9 is a 65acre planned mixed use community located in the City's River District and adjoining the southern boundary of the American River. The Light Rail Green Line Station is currently under construction and will begin operations in early 2011. The first major building to begin construction at Township Nine will include 180 apartment units and ground floor retail with the rest of the project constructed incrementally over the next ten years. Township Nine is also expected to achieve Gold status for The U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED™ for Neighborhood Development program. The total projected cost to built out this project estimated at $1.7 billion.

Monday, December 06, 2010

Needed K Street Entertainment Coming Soon

The date of January 12, 2010 has been chosen for the opening of George Karpaty vintage Dive Bar, pizza restaurant and upscale night club. Developers David S. Taylor and CIM Group received a city subsidy of $5.4 million to renovate the buildings with Taylor spending nearly that much again on the buildings and the tenant would invest about $1.7 million. The subsidy money came from a pool of proceeds by the sale of the downtown Sheraton and are earmarked for downtown development. Entertainment venues include the Frisky Rhythm Dance Club, Pizza Rock and Dive Bar which will have warm water 100,000-pound aquarium with an occasional visit by a mermaid or a merman.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Will IBM Help Sacramento?

I think this might be helpful and the City should look into this.

Deficits and cramped budgets are plaguing local governments around the country this year. Almost half a million dollars worth of technology and consulting services would be a more than welcome gift for most cities – and this is exactly what IBM is offering with its new Smarter Cities Challenge.

The pro bono program will grant 50 North American cities up to $400,000 in technology and consulting resources to help find solutions for local issues. IBM is now encouraging Sacramento to apply for the grant by December 31.

The grant could be used to make Sacramento greener and more sustainable, or to improve citizen engagement with our city. It could help build out our infrastructure in ways that are both creative and effective, or it could just assist with Mayor Johnson’s plans to improve government and foster economic development.

To learn more about the program, you can visit the Smarter Cities website.

It’s an open question: how could $400,000 in technology-based services from IBM benefit Sacramento?

If you ran the city, what problem would you solve? Is there a project you would help?

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Sacramento Prints

Treat yourself or someone you know to some unique images of Sacramento by taking advantage of my special deal on prints. From now till the end of December, my vast Sacramento photo gallery will lower its print prices by $5 (per print) from the regular price listed below till the end of 2010. All prints would be made on a Photo Quality Luster paper with the option of also mounting them on Matt Board for additional $10.00 (which I recommend). Other canvases are available, so feel free to contact me with any questions you may have. Please look at my galleries here and here.

8x10 inch Print $35.00
11x14 inch Print $38.00
16x20 inch Print $40.00
16x24 inch Print $40.00
30x40 inch Print $63.00
36 x 48 inch Print $82.00
40 x 60 inch Print $103.00

When choosing a print, please attach the photo or photos to an email describing the size of the prints and if there are any additional instructions. Once I have confirmed the order it will take about two weeks till the prints are ready. Please send orders to michael@zwahlenimages.com.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Kelly Team will lead C.O.R.E Arena Proposal

As reported by the Sacramento Business Journal; Developer Larry Kelley and his senior managers at McClellan Park have partnered with restaurateur Ali Mackani to push for an arena at the site of Westfield Downtown Plaza.

The Kelley team will lead the effort to develop a downtown sports and entertainment complex with the Mackani’s C.O.R.E. Group, Kelley announced Thursday.

Kelley brings a strong management team to the C.O.R.E. Group, which now has another chance to convince Sacramento city leaders that they should consider this arena proposal. Mackani’s proposal was one of seven proposals offered to the Sacramento First Task Force nearly a year ago. The city went with a partnership of Gerry Kamilos and David Taylor, which proposed developing a downtown arena as part of a three-way land swap with Cal Expo and Arco Arena. The city’s exclusive negotiations with the Kamilos/Taylor group has expired, opening up possibilities once again for other proposals.

In a news release, Kelley said that a weakness in the previous C.O.R.E. plan was a lack of an experience development team to make the project a reality.

The C.O.R.E. Group also added to its team the law firm of Weintraub Genshlea Chediak, led by real estate attorney Mike Kvarme and attorney Matt Massari.

Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson decided last month to reconvene his arena task force to consider old and any new arena proposals. Kamilos and Taylor and their Sacramento Convergence LLC group hope to bring back a viable plan to the City Council in January. That group’s proposal fell apart in September when Cal Expo decided it would not participate.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Speakeasy Tour this Saturday

Want something fun and different to do this Saturday night? Have friends/relatives in town for Thanksgiving week? If you’re a fan of history, cocktails, or both, grab your group and join Downtown Sacramento Partnership tour guide and history buff Shawn Peter for the Sacramento speakeasy tour and pub crawl! The speakeasy tour takes you on a pub crawl through Old Sacramento and each location was a former speakeasy site during the prohibition. The tour begins at the River City Saloon and heads to several bars throughout Oldtown, including the Delta King, once a hotspot for prohibition drinking, jazz bands, gambling and fine dining. At each stop, you’ll have time to purchase prohibition-era cocktails and beer while you ponder and discuss Sactown’s rich history and dirty little secrets. The tour is only $10 per person, and the more, the merrier! The tour lasts about 2 hours and is a great way to kick off a fun night on the town with your friends.

Please call (916) 442-8575 or email dsp@downtownsac.org to make your reservation. Last minute walk ups are also welcome, but reservations are encouraged to hold your spot!

When: Saturday 20th, 2010.

Content provided by The Downtown Sacramento Partnership.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Iceland Restoration

Iceland is currently requesting a special permit to establish an outdoor ice skating rink to operate within the building footprint of the Iceland ice skating rink that was destroyed by fire in March 2010. The outdoor ice rink is intends to operate for approximately two years before the former, fully enclosed, structure can be rebuilt. Their goal is to re-opening for the winter of 2010

The Iceland ice skating rink was built in 1940 and was in continuous operation until March of 2010 when the structure was badly damaged by an arson-set fire. Though there was extensive damage to Iceland, the exterior walls remained standing. The intent of the current request is to operate Iceland as a nonprofit, outdoor ice skating facility that would operate during the winter season. The applicant expects to operate as an outdoor skating facility for one or two years until the facility can be fully rebuilt. Currently, the Iceland building is in the application process for Landmark nomination.

Monday, November 08, 2010

Downtown Ice Rink

Ice Rink Admission is $8 for a 2-hour skating session and $2 for skate rentals. The Ice Rink offers parking validations at the Westfield Downtown Plaza. Garage entrances are located at 5th & J streets and 4th & L streets. For more information visit www.downtownsac.org/icerink

Open Daily November 5, 2010 – January 17, 2011
Sunday – Thursday / Noon – 8 pm
Friday – Saturday / 10 am – 10 pm

Friday, November 05, 2010

K Street Developer Proposes Music Venue

D&S Development is proposing a 500 people music venue on the700 block and former site of the Men’s Wearhouse. This would be part of a mixed-use projects on the corridor long considered ground zero for the rebirth of downtown Sacramento.

According to the Sacramento Business Journal, “The multi-tiered concert space will sit on the corner of K and 7th streets, alongside local retailers and restaurants with a “Main Street” feel of second-story apartments inside K Street’s historic shops. That’s according to D&S Development, one of the partners negotiating with the city to remake the 700 block and enhance nightlife along the corridor.

The urban renewal can’t come soon enough for Sacramento, which will have invested more than $60 million in remaking two blocks of K Street if projects proposed there are built. While the city is looking to complete these deals, it also is examining the post-recession course for infill and redevelopment.

There has been $617 million invested in downtown over the past five years in 22 projects and all but five were to have been public-private partnerships. The K street projects on the 700 and 800 blocks also will be public-private partnerships that rely on subsidies.

After touring the buildings on the 700 block, D&S Development dropped the number of proposed apartments there from 136 to 125 and increased the retail space to about 60,000 square feet."

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Design Concept for K Street Traffic

This Tuesday the 2nd  Thursday November 4th, Sacramento City Council will approve a Preliminary Design Concept with DKS Associates for final design for Vehicular Traffic Options on the K Street Mall in an amount of $238,873 and extend the time for completion to October 31, 2011. The objective of reintroducing vehicular traffic to K Street is to revitalize the area and improve circulation.

It’s the City staff's recommendation to approve the project and environmental document, the preliminary design concept, and Supplemental Agreement No. 2 with DKS Associates in an amount not to exceed $238,873 to prepare final plans. Should Council approve these actions, an invitation to bid and will return to Council in Spring 2011 for approval of the construction contract. Cars may return to K Street as early as Fall 2011.

History: K Street was once the bustling core of downtown, but since cars were removed in the late 1960s, the vibrancy has diminished. Recently, however, there have been successes on K Street and the City of Sacramento is interested in building on those successes and recreating K Street as a vibrant part of downtown.Vehicular traffic has been cited as one technique that can generate additional economic development and change perceptions of the corridor. The project purpose is to increase access and visibility to businesses, promote a safe environment, stimulate additional economic activity, and improve circulation.

In 2009, the City and the Downtown Sacramento Partnership commissioned a Downtown Activation Strategy from Downtown Works, a leading retail consultant. The report explains that in the late 1960s Sacramento made a similar mistake that numerous other cities across the United States made in the 1960s through 1980s by closing off streets to vehicular traffic and creating pedestrian malls. The intent was to replicate the feeling of the suburban mall which at the time was becoming increasingly popular. This strategy actually had the opposite impact and decimated retail in numerous downtowns, including K Street in Sacramento. The removal of vehicular traffic disrupted the Downtown grid and eliminated traffic which is critical to the success of retail.

On April 22, 2010, City Council approved an approximately $2.7M budget for the K Street Mall Traffic Study and its implementation. It also authorized a supplemental agreement with DKS to prepare preliminary plans. Council Supplemental Agreement

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Sites chosen for new County courthouse

The State Public Works Board on Monday narrowed the choices for a new $439.1 million Sacramento County Superior Courthouse to two sites — the vacant 301 Capitol Mall lot that was once the proposed site for the Towers on Capitol Mall high rises and property within the Sacramento Railyards.

The state’s Administrative Office of the Courts will now begin a negotiation process with the owners of each lot to determine where the new courthouse will be built.

The office expects to complete site acquisition in one year and complete the project in early 2015.

The 301 Capitol Mall is owned by The Towers On Capitol Mall LLC, which is controlled by the California Public Employees’ Retirement System.

The Sacramento Railyards site is across the street from the Federal Courthouse and now owned by Inland American Real Estate Trust.

It’s unclear what the value of either property would be in today’s market, although the county has assessed the Capitol Mall lot at $21 million.

Sacramento Business Journal

This news isn’t anything we did not already know before but this doe’s show that the project is still moving forward. I hope they choose the Railyards location and jump start that area with development.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Inland American takes over Railyards

As reported by News 10, Georgia developer Stan Thomas lost control of the largest infill project in the country at a courthouse foreclosure auction Friday afternoon going back to the lender, a subsidiary of Illinois-based Inland American Real Estate Trust, after nobody offered a bid at the company's opening price of $50 million. Inland says they “are pleased to move forward. Inland American can now start to roll up its sleeves and work with the city of Sacramento and state agencies to allow the project to proceed. We look forward to working with the community to redevelop this important part of the city.”

Inland American said Thomas Enterprises would serve in a consulting role during the ownership transition. The company said it was already assembling a project development team for the Railyards and was in the process of establishing a local office.

Inland American promised a more extensive update on its plans and progress within two months.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

B Street Theatre

It's being reported in the Sacramento Press that the new B Street Theatre will soon start fundraising to build the $15 million project.  They plan on financing 5 or 6 million but will need to raise at least 9 million to build the 365 seat theatre for children. If all goes as planned, groundbreaking would take place in 2012, followed by 14 months of building, then holding its first show in 2013 at the corner of at 27th Street and Capitol Avenue.  

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Maydestone Renovation

The Maydestone apartments are finally getting the rehab that we have been hearing about since 2006. Built in 1912 and continually having tenants until 2003 because of a fire, in 2009 Sacramento developer D&S Development took over an option to purchase the historic 34 room building. On the southeast corner of 15th and J, the Maydestone apartments have been vacant for five years and underutilized for decades. The $7.2 million renovation should be finish in late 2011 and clean up a busy corner on J Street. SHRA will contribute $4.57 million of low-moderate housing set aside funds. $2.29 million in the form of a 30-year forgivable loan (loan forgiveness based on performance) for seismic and historic renovations. Additionally, SHRA will provide a hard loan of $2.28 million for 40 years at 4 percent interest. Brief Project Overview

Monday, October 11, 2010

12th Street Improvement Project

The City has been awarded $900,000 in federal funds from the Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP) to upgrade the existing traffic signal system on 12 th Street corridor from Richards Boulevard to L Street. The 12th Street Corridor Safety Improvement Project (T15115000) was established and federal funding in the amount of $900,000 was programmed with the adoption of the FY2010/11 Capital Improvement Program.

12th Street also contains high pedestrian concentrations. Along with the two light rail stations, there is high pedestrian activity in the vicinity of the Loaves and Fishes, and around the K Street Pedestrian Mall.

Formerly, 12th Street between Richards Boulevard and F Street was under the jurisdiction of Caltrans. The roadway was relinquished to the City of Sacramento and the City has inherited a number of issues associated with the condition of the traffic signals. Also, the light rail programming and train detection has not been updated since 1987 when light rail started operations.

The proposed improvements are as follows:

• Rebuild the entire electrical system along the corridor to meet current City, Light Rail, Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and Public Utility Commission (PUC) safety standards and address the operational and safety issues with the traffic signal/Light Rail Transit (LRT) system.

• Improve signing and striping along the corridor to better indicate lane assignments for all corridor users. Vertical delineators will be added to augment the separation between trains and vehicles.

• Existing deteriorated and compromised conduits and wiring will be replaced.

• The project will install countdown pedestrian signals at all intersections, and provide Leading Pedestrian Intervals (LPI) at locations with high pedestrian activity, disabled or senior citizens.

This Tuesday the 12th; City Council will adopt a resolution to move forward with this project. Report

Friday, October 08, 2010

Crocker Art Museum Grand Opening

Crocker Art Museum
Sunday, Oct 10, 2010
10:00 AM until 10:00 PM

The Crocker's Grand Opening will celebrate Sacramento's arts community at large, with participation by local and regional arts organizations and artists. Highlights of the day include performance by the Sacramento Youth Jazz Band, Symphony and Choir; Salsa, Indian, Mexican African and Irish dance and music; ArtCar Fest - 2010, the West Coast's largest gathering of art cars; and a 9:30 PM Laser Light Show to conclude the day's festivities.

Musical Menagerie by Sacramento Philharmonic from 10 AM-2 PM
Multimedia presentation Welcome to the New Crocker from 11 AM-8 PM in the Auditorium
Art Cars and Chalk it Up on O Street from 10 AM to 6 PM
Art workshops and demos in the Studio Art Spaces from 11 AM to 8 PM
Art activities and docent spotlight talks in the Galleries
Creative Community Court in the E. Kendell Davis Courtyard from 11 AM to 6:30 PM
Totland (for 5 and under) 11 AM-6 PM, Discovery Gallery
Beer & Wine Gallery in the E. Kendell Davis Courtyard from 4 PM to 10 PM

216 O Street, Sacramento, CA 95814

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Iconic Capitol Mall

One of my favorite views down Capitol Mall from the Embassy Suites. This sure would have been an awesome view if just a few more of the proposed towers came to fruition a few years ago. This is a five photo stitched panoramic taken on 9-3-2010.

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Sacramento Silhouette

Fall mornings lay a nice thick haze in the air creating awe-inspiring silhouettes from the west. Taken 9-26-2010. This is a five photo stitched panoramic, to view the entire photo click here.

Friday, October 01, 2010

2035 Metropolitan Transportation Plan

The Sacramento Area Council of Governments (SACOG) will be hosting workshops throughout October to gather input from residents on transportation and land use planning in the Sacramento region.

SACOG is a land use and transportation planning agency for the region including Sacramento, El Dorado, Placer, Sutter, Yolo, and Yuba counties. As part of the transportation planning process, SACOG updates the Metropolitan Transportation Plan (MTP) every four years. The MTP includes investments in transit, freeways, roadways, and bike and pedestrian improvements.

In an effort to plan thoughtfully for all regional travel needs, SACOG will host 9 public workshops around the region in which residents can get information and provide input on the MTP. This process is very important because the MTP will guide transportation over the next 25 years. Residents can help shape the plan by voicing their needs, experiences and thoughts on transportation in the Sacramento area. Everyone is encouraged to attend; no previous meeting participation or transportation planning experience is needed. The workshops are FREE and food will be provided.

Workshops will be held in October, registration online is now open at www.sacog.org/update or by phone at 916-321-9000. For more information about SACOG, the MTP, or the public workshops, please visit http://www.sacog.org/. Also, here is a link to download the MTP2035 Newsletter http://www.sacog.org/mtp2035/email_docs/MTP_Newsletter_09-2010.pdf

Thursday, September 30, 2010

New Sacramento Central Utility Plant

The new Central Power Plant between Q, P, 6th and 7th streets.  The old plant was shut down by the EPA for discharging hot water into the river.  The new plant utilizes a huge water cooling tower.  Instead of trying to hide it- which is impossible- the design embellishes it with colored panels and a space frame.  The treatment at the top is supposed to represent a splash, just like a high speed photo of a milk drop splash. The remainder of the building is intended to look like an office building, but it is simply a big mechanical plant inside with pipes and ducts, etc.

The new $181 million Sacramento Central Plant will replace an aging 40-year-old facility, efficiently heating and cooling 5.5 million square feet of office space in the Capitol and 23 other state buildings in downtown Sacramento. Although called a renovation, this project consisted of constructing a new plant outside the footprint of the existing plant and once complete the old plant was demolished to make way for TANK and site amenities. The new structure is about 80,000-SF. More info here.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Railyards Bridges

Despite Thomas Enterprises still lingering default to pay investor Inland American, work continues on the 5th and 6th Street bridges. By the end of September, the soffit and stems (lower deck) of the 5th Street bridge will be poured with concrete, and 6th Street structures will follow shortly after. All structures will be complete in early 2011. The Railyards redevelopment picture provided by http://www.sacramentorailyards.com/  and clicking on VIEW LATEST IMAGES.

Friday, September 24, 2010

$50 million Powerhouse Science Center

The former Pacific Gas & Electric Co. power plant on the Sacramento River will soon turn into a $50 million Powerhouse Science Center. PG&E workers will begin removing power lines Sunday, and then on Wednesday, will start removing the large towers that hold the wires. Construction is set to start in a year and set to open in 2013.

Renderings provided by Dreyfuss & Blackford.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Hotel Berry Renovation

This $24.5 million project is set to start renovations next month and take a year and a half to complete. The historic hotel at 729 L St. was built in 1929 and since the 1970s, the hotel had been used for affordable housing, referred to as a single-room occupancy (SRO) hotel. The renovation, will outfitted each room with a kitchenette and the ground floor will be remodeled.

In September 2009, the Hotel Berry Project was awarded nine percent tax credits through a competitive process. The Project exchanged the tax credits for an award of American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funds in the amount of $13,561,066 in December 2009. The ARRA award completed the Project's required financing. The necessary agreements have been executed to proceed with disposition of the property by the Redevelopment Agency to the developer Jamboree Housing Corporation (Jamboree). Jamboree will develop and own the Hotel Berry.

In July of 2010 Jamboree submitted plans to the City Building Department and anticipates receiving permits in October of 2010. Construction is expected to begin immediately after building permits are issued with completion estimated by the end of 2011. Sacramento City Ordinance 2006-056 requires that the City maintain an inventory of not less than 712 residential hotel or comparable units. The Hotel Berry is the second largest of the remaining downtown residential hotels and one of nine properties that comprise the City's SRO inventory. Granicus

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Curtisfest 2010

Curtis fest is a community celebration of art in all it's forms, we will have local artists, artisans, and food vendors in Curtis Park this Saturday September 11th, 2010. Join your friends and neighbors from 10am to 4pm in Curtis Park, Sacramento. For more information email info@sierra2.org or call 916-452-3005.

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

This weekend Gold Rush Days & Chalk it Up

This Labor Day weekend Sacramentans have lots of activities to choose from. In Old Sacramento more than 200 tons of dirt will be dumped on the streets of Old Sacramento as the annual festival "turns back the clock," Gold Rush Days, transforming Sacramento’s historic district into a scene straight out of the 1850s. Costumed re-enactors, Wild West gun fights, musicians playing period instruments, and many aspects of life during the Gold Rush will be highlighted during the four-day event. The event is FREE, September 3-5, Fri 9am-4pm, Sat 11am-7pm, Sun 11am-7pm, Mon 11am-4pm.

In Fremont Park at 16th & O Street, Chalk It Up is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year as Sacramento’s longest running chalk art and music event as hundreds of sidewalk chalk artists and dozens of live music acts come together for yet another fun-filled, family-friendly Chalk It Up! Chalk art festival! September 4 -6, 10am to 6pm daily.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Images of Sacramento

Tower Theater - 2508 Land Park Drive- Built in 1938
1615 Capitol Ave. Department of Public Health
300 Capitol Mall - Built in 1983

Monday, August 23, 2010

Deadline for Railyard Developer Today

Today Thomas Enterprises could lose funding for the Railyards project if the developer can’t prove it has the money to continue the job. The state of California has said it will pull $30 million in grant funding if developer Thomas Enterprises cannot clear a notice of default with investor Inland American.

There is also another $50 million grant as well as another $35 million allotted from the state transportation commission, putting more than $100 million in funding at risk. Inland American says it will work to protect the state grant funds, with or without Thomas Enterprises. (CBS13)

Thursday, August 19, 2010

The Next American Dream

The Next American Dream
Is Sacramento Ready?

We used to get dressed up to go “downtown.”
It was an occasion.
It was the place to be.
It was the energy of every growing city.
But times changed.

Suburbia was born.
And we deserted downtown.

It’s time to rebuild our urban cores.
Does Sacramento have the will to rebuild?

Please join us at the Crest Theatre
for a screening of
The Next American Dream,
a documentary film about a downtown coming back to life.

Thursday, Aug. 26, 2010
Social Hour – 5 to 6 p.m.
Screening – 6 to 7 p.m.
After-Party – Social Nightclub (10th and K)

This screening was not brought to you by an association, a chamber, a media outlet, a developer, a politician or the filmmaker. This film was brought to you by people who call Sacramento home. Most importantly, this film was brought to you by a group of people who ready to change the landscape of our region.

For more information about The Next American Dream, visit nextamericandream.com.

Some local Sacramentans are putting this screening on: a new vision for downtown Sacramento.

Check out the trailer at http://nextamericandream.com/.

I think you’ll find it well worth your time

Monday, August 16, 2010

Updated DMV Headquarter Renderings

Thanks to my friends at Lionakis who is both the Architect and Designer of this project, I have some updated renderings that includes a new central plant. In addition to the other upgrades I mentioned in my previous post, the exteriors south-southwest portion of the facade will be a dual-skin facade. The purpose of this feature is to provide an insulation barrier which may also be ventilated naturally (through a stack effect: heat rises). The central plant is also currently construction, one block south of the headquarters.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

What ever happen to...

A couple weeks ago the Sacramento Business Journal did a story all the infamous lots in downtown Sacramento where projects that were once on the verge of breaking ground were eventually put on hold or canceled .There are a few of these site I had forgotten about, but it's also a good read as to what else is going on now.

Read here: Lots of potential by The Sacramento Business Journal

3rd & Capitol Mall where John Saca's Towers were proposed

Monday, August 09, 2010

River District Specific Plan

For the 748-acre River District Area, the City proposes adopting policy documents to support a transit-oriented mixed-use urban environment that would include up to 8,144 dwelling units, 3.9 million square-feet of office, 854,000 square-feet of retail, 1.4 million square feet light industrial, and 3,044 hotel units.

The proposed River District special planning district consists of properties generally bounded by the Sacramento River on the west, the American River on the north, the Railyards on the south, and 18th Street on the east. The SPD is intended to implement the development standards and design guidelines in the River District area plan.

The goals of the River District SPD are as follows:

• Establish a greater mix of land uses and intensities to attract private investment;

• Provide the opportunity for reuse and rehabilitation of heavy commercial and industrial uses to take advantage of the light rail facilities in the area to reduce the number of obsolete and underutilized buildings and sites;

• Allow for the retention and continued operation of industrial and service oriented uses;

• Provide for improved circulation, infrastructure, and community facilities that will serve existing and future needs within the area;

• Provide for the future creation of a significant residential population as industrial uses are replaced or relocated within the River District area to achieve housing objectives of the central city and provide a jobs/housing balance for future office growth;

• Provide for the intensification of commercial and office uses within close proximity to the planned and existing light rail stations and Interstate 5;

• Discourage uses that contribute to visual or economic blight;

• Ensure that properties with hazardous material contamination within the River District area are remediated to the extent necessary to protect the health and safety of all possible site users and users of adjacent properties, consistent with applicable laws and regulations;

• To encourage the preservation of historic structures;

• Promote aesthetic improvements to the area by implementing development standards and design guidelines.

This Thursday the 12th, the Planning Commission will review and comment on proposed height limits within the River District, treatment of nonconforming uses, zoning code change entitlements (height, setback, and stepback), parking regulations, rezoning of industrial land to more mixed uses, feasibility of requiring ground floor commercial within specified areas of the district, and other issues regarding the draft River District plan.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Township 9 Parks Master Plan

Township 9 is a 65acre planned mixed use community located in the City's River District and adjoining the southern boundary of the American River. Parks within the project include a passive community park along the American River, a small neighborhood park centrally located within the development, widened street medians and a mew, a transit plaza and mid-block paseos. The parks will serve the residents and employees of the development and will help to move pedestrians and bicyclists through the project site as they make their way towards the American River. A master plan for all of the parks, with the exception of the mid-block paseos, will come to City Council for approval on August 10th.

On July 1, 2010, the City of Sacramento Parks and Recreation Commission (PRC) reviewed and supported the Parks Master Plan for Township 9, recognizing that the parks included expensive elements not typically found in City parks, and that maintenance of the parks would be more costly. The PRC recommended that park maintenance be conducted by City staff rather than by a private entity, following discussion about the Project's Development Agreement which requires the Developer to form an assessment district to fully fund the maintenance of the parks. The Township 9 Development Agreement allows the City to enter into an agreement with an outside entity to perform the maintenance.

The City received $30 million in Proposition 1 C grant funding that was assigned to the Township 9 development project. This funding has enabled the developer to begin construction on this high profile project. The Proposition 1 C funding will focus on the design and construction of infrastructure needed to develop the site (streets, sewer, water, storm drain and dry utilities), three parks (Transit Plaza, North 7 th Street Median, and Riverfront Park), and light rail improvements in consideration for development of 397 market rate housing units and a 180 residential unit affordable housing apartment. Staff will return to City Council for action on a Credit / Reimbursement Agreement for "turn-key" park development with the Township 9 Developer at a later date. Development of parks creates an ongoing cost for park maintenance and utilities based on the size of the park. The Project's Development Agreement requires that a Community Facilities District or other assessment district be formed and funded before the City will accept each park. The ongoing maintenance of each park will be fully funded by the District to offset any new impact to the Department's Operating Budget.

Timing: The Transit Plaza, North 7th Street Median, Riverfront Plaza and Riverfront Park are anticipated to be completed by mid-2011

Monday, August 02, 2010

DMV Headquarters Renovation

After deciding to remove asbestos applied between every floor when DMV’s Sacramento Headquarters Building East opened in 1962, the department launched an ambitious, concurrent renovation plan to completely remodel all six floors of the facility to improve energy efficiency and reduce ongoing operations costs. The remodeled floors feature energy-efficient glass, sunscreens and insulation systems, energy-efficient lighting and mechanical systems, and water-saving restroom fixtures. The project will also ultimately add a solar, electricity-generating photovoltaic (PV) system to the building’s roof. The project was started in 2004 and expected to be finished in 2011. Located at 2415 1st Avenue.

Current exterior renovation photos taken last week.