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  2. Spokes's Avatar
    From Kitchener | Member Since Dec 2009 | 4,277 Posts
    Lang Tanning building sold
    Toronto developer hopes to attract retail, restaurant and office tenants

    December 01, 2007

    KITCHENER - Reflecting the revitalization of downtown Kitchener's Warehouse District, Toronto companies have agreed to buy the former Lang Tanning building and also the former Interior Hardwood Co. factory across Victoria Street.

    Cadan Inc., a real-estate developer specializing in converting properties to new uses, is to buy the old tannery, a warren of connected buildings dating to the 1890s that houses several dozen small businesses.

    Although no plans have been finalized, Cadan hopes to attract retail, restaurant and professional office tenants to the 5.6-acre site, said Lana Sherman, managing director of the company.

    Meanwhile, Allied Properties Real Estate Investment Trust announced yesterday it is to purchase the century-old former wooden-seat factory at 72 Victoria St. S. for $13.9 million.

    The seller, Waterloo Warehouse Equities (Victoria) Ltd., spent $4.5 million turning the building into office space in 1999. It now houses eight tenants in 85,610 square feet of retro-trendy surroundings featuring hardwood floors and exposed beams.

    Sherman said her company hopes to attract similar tenants to the 400,000-square-foot Lang Tannery building.

    "People like designers, lawyers or accountants -- people who want funky office space, people who have interesting retail space," she said. "People who want open spaces so the restaurants can spill out into the courtyard."

    Allied Properties said it expects its purchase to close in January. The sale of the Lang building from the current owners, construction company Ball Brothers Ltd., should close around New Year's, said real estate agent John Whitney of J.J. Barnicke Whitney Ltd.

    Sherman and Whitney declined to say how much the Lang building is selling for.

    The tannery, once the largest in the British Empire, closed in 1954. Ball Brothers bought the building, which fronts onto Joseph Street, 29 years later.

    In its maze of walls, staircases and dead-end corridors, it houses a motley collection of small businesses, including martial arts studios, artists' workshops, and wood shops.

    While Sherman said she cannot make any promises, Cadan has no plans to evict any of the building's current tenants.

    "We don't have a plan to kick people out," she said. "We really want to develop around the people that are there."

    Cadan's first move will be to clean up the building and improve access to it for both current and future tenants, Sherman said.

    "Our initial focus is just going to be on clearing it up and restoring it and unlocking its inner beauty," she said.

    More details about Cadan's plans for the building will come in a formal announcement in the next few weeks, she said.

    Cadan also owns the Palisades Kitchener retirement residence on Benton Street. Although the company has not ruled anything out, Sherman expressed skepticism about putting residences in the Lang building.

    "In the city right now, I'm not sure people need any more lofts," she said.

    The 72 Victoria St. S. building will be Allied Properties' only holding outside of Toronto, Montreal, Winnipeg and Quebec City.

    In a statement, Michael Emory, chief executive officer of Allied Properties, said Kitchener's Warehouse District is a promising market.

    "It's an emerging urban neighbourhood with the same historic character and mix of uses that have made our current target markets so successful."

    Because Allied Properties is in a regulatory quiet period, Emory declined to speak further on the building purchase.

    Big plan afoot for Lang building
    Developer to turn property into thriving centre

    May 27, 2008
    Terry Pender

    KITCHENER - Developers hope to turn one of the city's largest historic buildings -- the former Lang tannery -- into a thriving people place, with restaurants, digital and multimedia offices and studios, and research space for the life sciences.

    Toronto-based Candan Inc. briefed city councillors yesterday on the $30-million project to transform the 100-year-old tannery into a high-profile bastion of the knowledge economy.

    The building, bounded by Victoria, Charles, Francis and Joseph streets will be called The Tannery.

    "We are very excited about it," Lana Sherman of Candan told councillors.

    "Once it is completed, The Tannery will become a vibrant community where diverse users can share space and ideas."

    Sherman said the existing tenants, including artisans, graphic designers, photographers and carpenters, "will interact with new users, the multimedia, the digital media, health sciences, technology, new retail and professional services."

    Candan sees opportunities in old factories and has a lot of experience converting them to new uses. The company bought an old rubber factory at Dupont and Dundas streets in Toronto for another project.

    "Give us an opportunity to revitalize and reuse as opposed to demolish, which is what most developers start off with, and we enjoy the opportunity to make positive change, both socially and economically," Sherman said.

    "We are creating a convergence centre, where creativity and business will flourish, a place that caters to people beyond the nine-to-five."

    The work is scheduled to be done in 2009.

    Candan discovered the old tannery building while converting a retirement home at Church and Benton streets into condominiums.

    Those condominiums at 64 Benton St. go on the market next month.

    The tannery project is the second major development near the University of Waterloo's school of pharmacy at King and Victoria streets.

    The City of Kitchener provided the land and gave the university $30 million to attract the Health Sciences Campus to the downtown.

    That project spurred the $40-million conversion of the Kaufman boot factory into condominiums, and now the adaptive re-use of the tannery building.

    "We are excited by the growth and rejuvenation we see going on all around us, and we hope to be a key component in the evolution of downtown Kitchener," Sherman said.

    "Kitchener is going through one of the most extensive, bold and dynamic core revitalization processes in the country."

    Parts of the building along Charles Street will be demolished. A new entrance and lobby will be built off Victoria Street. Walkways will bring pedestrians into the development, which will also feature a gallery celebrating the building's industrial heritage. A parking lot will be built at Charles and Victoria streets.

    "We are being very sensitive to the heritage and history that is there," Sherman said.

    Showers and storage facilities for cyclists will be added to the building. Businesses leasing space can join a car-sharing program to reduce the demand for parking.

    Candan will have 350,000 square feet of space in the redeveloped buildings. It hopes to attract a variety of restaurants, new retail users, digital and multi-media offices and studios, office and research space for the life sciences, design and professional offices and service providers.

    "I can see the energy that will be brought back to the building," Mayor Carl Zehr said. "I am really pleased with what I see and I wish you well."

    Zehr has been one of the strongest supporters of the $110-million fund created a few years ago to create and attract strategic investments in the core.

    Even a critic of the fund, Coun. John Gazzola, was impressed with Candan's plans.

    "I'm really pleased to see all this," he said.
  3. Spokes's Avatar
    From Kitchener | Member Since Dec 2009 | 4,277 Posts
    Lang renovation will be the heart of the tannery district

    June 16, 2008
    Terry Pender
    Record staff

    KITCHENER—Chris Barfoot slowly walks through the 19th Century building, his mind racing with 21st Century possibilities for reusing one of the area’s oldest and biggest industrial buildings—the Lang Tannery.

    Work has already started on transforming this 5.5-acre warren of 15 interconnected buildings into a mixed-use development with offices, pharmaceutical laboratories, restaurants, professional services, high-tech companies, artisans and boutique retailers.

    Barfoot doesn’t stop talking as he navigates the maze-like collection of buildings, which range from one to five storeys. He operates industrial elevators or walks down wooden staircases on his way through a series of large spaces Toronto-based Cadan Inc. aims to have renovated and ready for new tenants in about a year.

    "It’s surprising the building is in such good shape after more than 100 years," Barfoot says.

    Bare-brick walls surround wood-plank floors and pillars that support ceilings 20-feet high. All of the rooms have lots of windows, and a large section on the top floor of one building has a long skylight. Most of the windows are now boarded-up and the skylight is closed, but all that will change in the coming months.

    "Depending upon who is going to use this space we will fix that up and put it on a mechanical-opening system," Barfoot says of the skylight.

    Reinhold Lang founded the Lang Tannery Company in 1848. It was located at the northeast corner of King and Ontario streets. This was Kitchener’s first major industry. In 1853 the original tannery was destroyed by a fire. Lang built a new tannery at the corner of Francis and Charles streets.
    Business was good.

    Between 1896 and 1956 the tannery buildings were built on the block of land bounded by Francis, Charles, Victoria and Joseph streets. The Lang Tannery became the largest producer of sole leather in the British Empire during the First World War. It also suppled saddle leather during the First World War, and during the Second World War it made leather linings for aircraft fuel tanks.

    Business dropped off quickly following the Second World War, and the business closed in 1954.

    Barfoot and Cadan know this history well and want to honour and preserve as much of it as possible. A public gallery will be located in the development with photographs and artifacts celebrating the industrial heritage of both the tannery and the city.

    Throughout the buildings are large wooden doors operated with counter-weights. These will be cleaned up and placed at strategic locations in the new development.

    "We just have to clean the walls. New windows ,new electrical, new heating-ventilation-and-air-conditioning. We are going to wire it for fibre-optics so it’s all high-speed Internet," Barfoot says of the renovations.

    Near the centre of the block is an old building that houses a large oil tank. Both that building and the tank will be removed to make way for a courtyard and public walkway that will bring pedestrians into the heart of The Tannery District.

    "Our initial thought was to have people walk through to Victoria Park, but we are not 100 per cent sure on that. We may have to gate it off for security purposes," Barfoot says.

    Beginning next month the single-storey building along Charles Street will be demolished to make way for the parking lot. Stores, restaurants, the court yard and walkway will be accessible from this lot at the corner of Victoria and Charles streets.

    "That’s going to be the face of The Tannery District," Barfoot says.

    The exterior of the buildings needs some work. Some outside walls need cleaning. Some masonry joints need repointing. New bricks will be installed where needed. Almost all of the windows will be replaced and new roofs will be installed.

    The total cost of the project is estimated at $30 million.

    Wooden staircases and old-freight elevators harken back to the city’s first wave of industry. While oozing character and history these will be replaced with modern versions to comply with the building code.

    Barfoot arrives on the top floor of a building and looks over the expansive room—20,000-square-feet. The pipes, beams and pillars are all exposed. Brick walls with lots of windows enclose the room.

    "This is going to be the office space here," Barfoot says. "This is the really cool, funky office space; companies are going to come in here and love this, high ceilings, quiet."

    The Tannery District expects to sign some high-tech firms and pharmaceutical companies as tenants. On the main floor near Charles Street is a huge room with a mezzanine level.

    "This is an area where we are targeting a restaurant," Barfoot says.

    Former tannery on track to reveal facelift in '09

    September 19, 2008
    Matt Walcoff

    KITCHENER - The redevelopers of the former Lang tannery have cleared out most of the 350,000-square-foot building for retail and office space that should be ready for use next year.

    The eclectic community of small businesses that has occupied the old buildings for nearly 30 years has been consolidated into the part of the complex fronting Francis Street, said Lana Sherman, managing director of developer Cadan Inc.

    Of the nearly 100 existing businesses -- martial arts studios, artists' workshops, wood shops and the like -- 60 to 70 have made arrangements to stay on the property, Sherman said. The rest are closing or moving off-site.

    Cadan is on schedule to have the complex, which dates to the 1890s, converted into a trendy mix of stores, restaurants and office space by the middle of next year.

    The developers recently began demolishing the former Downtown Self Storage building at Victoria and Charles streets to open up space for a nearly 100-vehicle parking lot.

    Cadan also plans to get rid of the mostly empty buildings between Joseph and Oak streets for another parking lot.

    Below the painted "Lang Tanning Company" advertisement facing Charles Street will be 20,000 square feet of retail space. Several restaurants should also open on the site, Sherman said. Office space and what Sherman calls the artisans' building on Francis Street will make up the balance of the development.

    The demolition of the self-storage building should be completed by the end of the year. Construction of a new lobby for the artisans' building is also expected to be finished over the winter.

    In the spring, the developers expect to landscape the property and run new utilities into the buildings.

    The Lang tannery closed in 1954 after more than a century of producing leather in Kitchener.

    Uniroyal Ltd. used the buildings for tire storage before selling them to construction company Ball Brothers Ltd. in 1973.

    Cadan bought the complex for $9.4 million in January.
  4. Spokes's Avatar
    From Kitchener | Member Since Dec 2009 | 4,277 Posts
    Architect has big plans for old tannery

    December 08, 2008
    Terry Pender

    KITCHENER - Decades before Roland Rom Colthoff started to bring new life to one of this city's most historic buildings -- the Lang Tannery -- he wanted to become an architect who blended new elements into old urban fabrics.

    After moving to Canada from Holland as a young boy, Colthoff grew up in Peterborough. He regularly walked past an abandoned warehouse near the railway that bisects Peterborough's downtown.

    One day a guitar maker moved into the empty space, installed new windows and opened shop.

    "I remember taking a photo of it and sending it along with my resumé to the school of architecture at the University of Waterloo," recalls Colthoff.

    "I said I would like to be part of that, to rejuvenate the city. When you are young you are full of ideals you are going to save the world through architecture."

    After graduating in 1983 from the school of architecture at Carleton University in Ottawa, Colthoff went on to find new uses for old factories across Toronto and southern Ontario.

    Colthoff worked on the first condominiums constructed in the historic Distillery District in Toronto and The Toy Factory in Liberty Village. Stage East in the Leslieville neighbourhood in Toronto is a recent project. So are the Cube Lofts in Little Italy, which sold out in two hours.

    Last year Colthoff and his partner started their own architecture firm -- Raw Design -- and were hired by the Toronto-based developer who bought the Lang Tannery -- Cadan Inc.

    "They are beautiful buildings and you can do so much with them, which makes them quite incredible to work with," Colthoff says.

    Rheinhold Lang founded the tannery in 1848. Fire destroyed the original building. The buildings that remain were built between 1896 and 1956 on the block bounded by Charles, Joseph, Francis and Victoria streets.

    The buildings once housed the largest tannery in the British Empire. It supplied the leather for boot soles and saddles during the First World War and leather linings for aircraft fuel tanks during the Second World War.

    "It's incredible to bring that back into the public eye and bring people into it and have them experience those spaces," Colthoff says.

    Cadan plans to spend $30 million on renovations to attract tenants. Colthoff is almost finished the design and is working on a site plan agreement with the City of Kitchener.

    While the tannery may look like a single, large building it is actually a complicated warren of sturdy, old factories. Steel beams and pillars, floors made of thick planks and walls of exposed bricks are found throughout.

    "The big change will be a new elevator core and new lobby so people can move through the building much easier, and cleaning up the corridors, which go all over the place right now, so we have a simple route through the building," Colthoff says.

    While Colthoff continues to refine the design of a rejuvenated Tannery, the demolition phase of the renovation is finished. Chris Barfoot of Cadan's local office says about 33,000-square-feet of space has been leased out to several groups, including the Kitchener Downtown Health Clinic, Pharmasave, an IT company and furniture store.

    "It's kind of slow right now, but it is picking up. We've had a lot of interest from restaurants, coffee shops and cafes," Barfoot says.

    Cadan's investment is the latest along the western edge of the downtown.

    The City of Kitchener started things off with a $30 million grant to the University of Waterloo for a 120,000-square-foot school of pharmacy at King and Victoria streets that opens in January. The pharmacy school cost $52 million. Next to that is a medical school slated to open in 2010. Nearby is the former Kaufman factory--the site of a $40 million conversion that created 240 condominiums.

    Tomorrow night, Cadan is hosting a reception to officially launch what it calls The Tannery District. Colthoff will be among those attending the launch party, but his mind may be elsewhere--Cambridge, Hamilton. St. Catharines and Toronto.

    These are all cities where Raw Design would like to breathe new life into old factories.

    "There are lots of old, industrial structures that could use a deft hand to bring them back to life," Colthoff says.

    High tech hopes for Lang site
    Former tannery complex the likely front-runner for new digital media convergence centre

    February 11, 2009
    Michael Hammond

    KITCHENER - The Lang Tannery complex appears to be the front-runner to be the home of the proposed Digital Media Convergence Centre.

    Lana Sherman, managing director of Cadan Inc., the Toronto-based developer of the Lang property, said no site has been selected for the centre, but a number of factors point to the tannery as the location of choice.

    "It's kind of been understood that we have space for them and it's understood that they will move toward us," she said. "There's no pressure whatsoever. It will all come together naturally."

    The tannery site in downtown Kitchener is in the block bounded by Charles, Francis, Joseph and Victoria streets and is kitty corner to the University of Waterloo's health sciences campus.

    Cadan was one of a number of local groups that helped develop a proposal for federal funding for the digital media corridor, which is a joint effort between the region's high-tech industry and the University of Waterloo's Stratford Institute.

    Last month, the digital media centre received $5.35 million in federal funding. The Stratford UW campus received an equal amount.

    Cadan refers to the digital media centre on its tannery website and in its latest tannery newsletter.

    "The tannery was one of the corporate members that were part of the application," the newsletter says, referring to the federal funding announcement. "We congratulate Communitech on this success and look forward to developing the centre with them at the tannery."

    Cadan is converting the collection of industrial buildings, some of which date back more than a century, into a mixed-use complex with space for artisans, offices, restaurants, boutique shops and medical facilities.

    Pharmasave will open a store in the complex and the Kitchener Downtown Community Health Centre will move there from its current location on Frederick Street, near Market Square. Sherman said a number of doctors' offices also will open in the building.

    The digital media corridor's backers aim to open a 30,000-square-foot digital media centre in downtown Kitchener before the end of the year.

    Local technology companies have committed $12 million in cash, equipment and services to equip the facility to do research and commercialization work. The corridor's backers want to create a space where young companies can work on ideas and researchers can begin to commercialize their research projects.

    Rod Regier, director of economic development for the City of Kitchener, said no decisions have been made, but he conceded the tannery would be a great fit for the digital media centre.

    "Their vision for the tannery is about creating a multi-dimensional and multidisciplinary environment that attracts great minds from a number of disciplines," he said. "That's really completely in keeping with what people are talking about as a vision for the Digital Media Convergence Centre."

    Regier said the digital media centre's backers are now planning what the centre will look like. Once that process is complete, a decision on where it will go can proceed.

    Kevin Tuer, executive director of the digital media corridor, said he has had discussions with Cadan, but said nothing has been decided.

    "The vision and what's going on down there aligns really nicely with what we want to do with the digital media centre," he said.

    The goal is still to have the digital media centre operational in some form by the end of the year.
  5. Spokes's Avatar
    From Kitchener | Member Since Dec 2009 | 4,277 Posts
    Taxpayers to foot bill for tannery cleanup

    March 10, 2009
    Jeff Outhit

    KITCHENER - Local taxpayers are giving a developer $891,000 to turn the former Lang Tannery site into brick-and-beam offices.

    The grant pays for the environmental cleanup inside and outside the buildings at Francis and Charles streets in downtown Kitchener.

    Developer Lana Sherman said the redevelopment could have gone forward without the grant, "but we were very honoured and very lucky that we were able to take advantage of this."

    Contamination at the former tannery was worse than expected, Sherman said. Dirty soil had to be hauled away, along with contaminated materials found inside. Cleanup took eight months. The site, now clean, is part-way into a $30-million redevelopment. Toronto-based Cadan Inc. is converting the buildings into space for artisans, offices, restaurants, boutiques and medical facilities.

    "The environmental remediation is always a big question when you buy a property," said Sherman, a managing director with Cadan. "You have some idea about the costs that you are going to incur, but at the end of the day it's a big black hole, and it's really nice to have a partner on the other side."

    The money is coming from both Kitchener and regional councils. The grant, approved by both councils last week, is part of an incentive program to encourage redevelopment of former industrial sites.

    "Otherwise we'd have derelict factories sitting all over our communities," Regional Chair Ken Seiling said. "It's a great investment."

    Councillors say the grant will be recovered in two years from increased property taxes generated by the redeveloped property. "It's good for all of us," Kitchener Mayor Carl Zehr said.

    Lang Tannery building showcases its ‘new’ look

    October 29, 2009
    By Terry Pender, Record staff

    KITCHENER — Business types mingled with bureaucrats and architects with developers in a room steeped in the city’s industrial past but bubbling with enthusiasm for the future.

    On Wednesday morning, dozens of people gathered for a buffet breakfast in the Lang Tannery building to mark the halfway point in the massive $30-million redevelopment of the historic property.

    So far the Toronto-based developer Cadan has leased out 120,000 of the 150,000 square feet of space available in the first phase — known as the Artisan Building.

    “We are very pleased with the way the leasing has been going,” Lana Sherman, managing director of Cadan, said.

    The second phase includes about 200,000 square feet of space for research and technology firms, restaurants and specialty retail.

    “That is looking good, we are very excited,” Sherman said. “We have a really strong level of interest in people moving in so it is not at all like some other markets that we have experienced.”

    At least two large high-tech firms are on track to lease large amounts of space in phase two, Sherman said.

    “It’s like this community has a lot of old, forgotten buildings that have now come back to life with new technology businesses that are thriving and the whole focus of the community has shifted from old manufacturing,” Sherman said.

    By early 2010, the second phase of the building should be renovated and ready for the first large tenant in April. Some retail tenants are expected to move in before that.

    “This will hopefully be a restaurant that comes out to here so this will be their private courtyard for dining,” Roland Rom Colthoff, an architect with Toronto-based RAW Design, said during a tour of the building.

    Colthoff was standing in an open area that used to hold a large boiler — the mechanical heart for what was the largest tannery in the British Empire.

    “They had to cut the tank into pieces to get it out,” Colthoff said.

    It is now cleaned up and ready for redevelopment.

    “On the second floor there will more openings and office space around there,” Colthoff said pointing to the upper floors above the courtyard.

    Balzac’s Coffee will be taking some space in phase two. That company currently has outlets in Stratford, the Distillery District in Toronto and Liberty Village, also in Toronto.

    Rheinhold Lang founded the tannery in 1848. Fire destroyed the original building. The buildings that remain and form what is now called the Tannery District were built between 1896 and 1956 on the block bounded by Charles, Joseph, Francis and Victoria streets.

    These buildings once supplied the leather for boot soles and saddles in the First World War and leather linings for aircraft fuel tanks during the Second World War.

    Some of the future and current tenants in the building include the Kitchener Downtown Community Health Centre, a pharmacy, three doctor’s offices, biotech firms and cutting-edge technology companies.

    As Colthoff walks some of the old brick and beam corridors, he marvels at the 100-year-old construction methods that can be put to new use today. The Lang Tannery is really a collection of more than 12 buildings.

    “It was just added to over time as the industrial processes changed, as their business grew, they just helter-skelter added bits to the building,” Colthoff said.

    “What we are lucky about is that every bit they added they built like a bunker,” Colthoff said. “So we can do almost anything inside, any use can come in.”

    Much of the work so far focused on a new elevator, washrooms, new heating-ventilation-air conditioning-electrical-plumbing, fire alarms, emergency exits and partial demolition. A new entrance and lobby was constructed off Charles Street for the Artisan Building.

    Some parts of the old factory are now stunning examples of old industrial space reclaimed for the new economy. There are wooden floors polished so bright they shine. Light pours in from numerous windows set inside thick walls. Stout wooden beams and posts are everywhere. Exposed pipe crosses the ceilings.

    “This is a very basic renovation to it, just improve the electrical standards, improve the life safety systems, improve the heating and ventilating equipment so it is suitable for a wider range of tenancies and try and leave as much of the existing building in place as possible,” Colthoff said.
  6. Spokes's Avatar
    From Kitchener | Member Since Dec 2009 | 4,277 Posts
    Last edited by Spokes; 12-27-2009 at 11:10 PM.
  7. Spokes's Avatar
    From Kitchener | Member Since Dec 2009 | 4,277 Posts
    One of the things I've wondered and can't find a concrete answer to is what will they do with the painted brick work?

    The rendering's look like everything's one colour, but the part at Francis and Charles is painted that tan/cream colour. Will that stay?
  8. Spokes's Avatar
    From Kitchener | Member Since Dec 2009 | 4,277 Posts
    Good article in the new edition of Your Kitchener about Lang. Some good info and an awesome picture! I'm not sure if I buy their timelines though. They say phase 1 is complete. I don't think so, not completely. And phase 2 done this spring? Not sure I buy that either.
  9. Spokes's Avatar
    From Kitchener | Member Since Dec 2009 | 4,277 Posts
    The city is releasing a heritage impact assessment of the B site which is the Oak-Linden-Joseph property. It'll be discussed at the Feb 2 Heritage Kitchener meeting

    The HIA can be found here:
  10. From Waterloo, ON | Member Since Jan 2010 | 2,293 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by Spokes
    The city is releasing a heritage impact assessment of the B site which is the Oak-Linden-Joseph property. It'll be discussed at the Feb 2 Heritage Kitchener meeting

    The HIA can be found here:
    Jesus Christ! They're planning on demolishing everything but the smokestack, and putting up parking. (Thanks a lot, off-street parking requirements!)
  11. Spokes's Avatar
    From Kitchener | Member Since Dec 2009 | 4,277 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by mpd618
    Jesus Christ! They're planning on demolishing everything but the smokestack, and putting up parking. (Thanks a lot, off-street parking requirements!)
    Ya I was shocked by that too. I didn't think those existing one storey structures had a lot of potential, but shocked none the less. Now I'm not TOO crushed by this. First, its not RIGHT on Victoria st. There's still that gas station lot that can and should be redeveloped to give Victoria more of a street presence. Second, it'll be good to have more parking to justify building on all of the other surface lots. I would have liked to see some retail built in (like Charles/Benton) so that's a shame. Also, while I like the addition of townhouses on Oak, I'd like to see them on Linden too. (it would help blend it in with the neighbourhood a bit better, having a row of townhouses to transition into the parking garage - if that makes sense haha.) I don't anticipate the block of Joseph between Victoria and Francis to be a major pedestrian corridor based on the way the Tannery is set up. And that's even if they do the Phase 3 addition at Victoria/Joseph. So while I'm not thrilled, I'm not pumped. The devil will be in the details as they say. Will they build it to fit in with the rest of the Factory District or will they build a concrete cube? Hopefully the former. As long as it looks good, I think I'll be ok with it.
    Last edited by Spokes; 01-24-2010 at 12:37 PM.
  12. Spokes's Avatar
    From Kitchener | Member Since Dec 2009 | 4,277 Posts
    Ya for those that didn't read it, the short term plans are to demolish the buildings but not the smoke stack and have a surface lot, while the long term plans are to build a level of underground parking, and 5 floors of above ground parking with townhouses on Oak st.
  13. UrbanWaterloo's Avatar
    From Kitchener-Waterloo | Member Since Dec 2009 | 5,693 Posts
    From the Bauer Buildings

    Quote Originally Posted by Spokes
    I really like that style of lights that projects up and down on buildings. Tyrone T uses similar ones, as does the Tannery
    Someone should capture nighttime photos of this building.
    Last edited by UrbanWaterloo; 01-31-2010 at 06:27 PM.
  14. Spokes's Avatar
    From Kitchener | Member Since Dec 2009 | 4,277 Posts
    Some notes from today's Heritage Kitchener Committee Meeting:

    -Architects were there to present the plans for site B

    -They reported that a lot of people have gotten in touch with them about wanting to locate to the Tannery site A, but have concerns about parking for their employees. They estimate that there is a need for upwards of 900 parking spots from the tenants of site A. On average of 3-4 spots per 1000 sq. ft. (One of the Tenants is the Digital Media Convergence Centre - which had previously been rumored, but I don't think ever confirmed)

    -People are very interested in setting up shop downtown, but want the parking they could get in the suburbs

    -The 5.5 storey parking structure would provide 650 spots.

    -There would be some green space between the townhouses and the parking structure. The smoke stack would be in that space.

    -One of the councilors was not comfortable with the parking structure unless it blended in to the neighborhood, adapting design elements that would make it blend in.
  15. RangersFan's Avatar
    From Kitchener | Member Since Jan 2010 | 1,582 Posts
    How did the plans for site B look? Was there anything new about the project that you didn't know before hand?
  16. Spokes's Avatar
    From Kitchener | Member Since Dec 2009 | 4,277 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by leaffan
    How did the plans for site B look? Was there anything new about the project that you didn't know before hand?
    Not really. The main thing is demolish all the structures minus the smoke stack (no big deal IMO) and have a temporary surface lot. Then they will have a 5.5 level parking garage. One thing that I didn't expect was that it'll only take up half the width of the block, the half nearest to Joseph st. Not exactly sure what I expected, if I expected it would take up more of the block. Actually one more thing that that was new, was that there will be a green space between the garage and townhomes that is accessable from Linden st. The smokestack will be there and likely some kind of description/historical emphasis in that space.

    One thing I couldn't get my head around was that in the presentation the architects used a generic parking garage in the image, and it had rounded corners and looked a bit "modern-ish." They emphasized that it was just a generic one and not what it would look like, but come question/comment time, at least 3 or 4 councilors/city staff members expressed dismay over such a modern looking parking garage in a historic district. (Where's the shaking my head in disgust emoticon? ahah)
  17. Spokes's Avatar
    From Kitchener | Member Since Dec 2009 | 4,277 Posts
  18. RangersFan's Avatar
    From Kitchener | Member Since Jan 2010 | 1,582 Posts
    It's good to know our leaders come prepared to listen at these events, good times.
  19. Spokes's Avatar
    From Kitchener | Member Since Dec 2009 | 4,277 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by leaffan
    It's good to know our leaders come prepared to listen at these events, good times.
    One lady, on a number of occasions was telling the architects that the developer should buy the Victoria Street lot and include that too haha. I wasn't going to get involved in that one, that there was a development in the works.

    I don't know how the members of the Herritage Committee come to be members, but I feel like a lot of them are some old citizens hell bent on keeping some things the way they were. But then they'll do a complete U-Turn and make some completely progressive statement and catch me off guard.
  20. RangersFan's Avatar
    From Kitchener | Member Since Jan 2010 | 1,582 Posts
    Well to be honest when I first heard about the Tannery project I was suprised that there was no residential lofts included in the plan. It seems weird that there is no plan or interest in developing a higher density development instead of townhouses. I am also suprised that there has been no interest in turning those buildings currently on site B into lofts, maybe they require lots of work etc that deems the redevelopment of the buildings unprofitable, but there really seems to be a demand for residential lofts in redevloped historic buildings in this area which I think is great.
    Last edited by RangersFan; 02-02-2010 at 09:17 PM.
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