Results 1 to 20 of 20

Thread: Ask Jim Question Thread - Thursday April 22.

  1. #1
    Forum Administrator *
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Edmonton
    Posts
    2,617
    Blog Entries
    2

    Default Ask Jim Question Thread - Thursday April 22.

    We closed the Wednesday thread to allow Jim time to respond to the very thorough questions there.

    You may start asking any new questions here.

    The answers to Wednesday's questions will be posted tomorrow by 9 am mountain.

  2. #2

    Default

    We know Mr Katz has the Oilers and fans interest at heart.
    Why did he not just propose a new arena for downtown.
    A new arena without the complex surrounding it.
    Did he think by adding a surrounding complex it would be better accepted by
    City Council and Edmontonians. Or, is it his way of getting the city to cover
    some of the cost of this project.
    Last edited by Gemini; 21-04-2010 at 06:31 PM.
    Gone............................and very quickly forgotten may I add.

  3. #3
    C2E Continued Contributor
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Edmonton, Alberta
    Posts
    1,057

    Default

    Thank you for this Jim.

    If I recall correctly, Lyle Best chaired an Edmonton committee to evaluate whether or not to build a new arena. Part of this process was to identify potential sites involved.


    http://www.gov.edmonton.ab.ca/city_g...ityRelease.pdf

    The committee’s work identified several potential sites in the downtown that could accommodate any new facility. Specific sites were not named for commercial and competitive reasons.
    While I understand not naming sites publicly during this process of evaluating whether to build a new arena or not, what I don't understand is how we arrived at this location as being the "best" one. The outward appearance , to me anyway, is simply that the Katz group has acquired property that is largely vacant and likely much cheaper than other sites downtown. How can I be assured that the proposed site is actually the best one?

    Barry Johns recently proposed another site downtown that at least seems reasonable to me. How many other sites have been considered? What was the criteria by which to select this location over another?

    Thank you.

  4. #4
    C2E Continued Contributor
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Meadows
    Posts
    1,976

    Default

    Will you be making a push to rename the future MacEwan LRT station just like the U of A pushed to rename Bay Station?
    $2.00 $2.25 $2.50 $2.75 $2.85 $3.00 $3.20 $3.25

  5. #5

    Default

    There have been a few elements of the arena plan presented thus far (i.e. winter garden, 2 rinks, hotel, office towers). Are these elements integral to the arena plan or could they be entirely changed/omitted?

    How do you think the adjacent proposed student residences and office towers will contribute towards the "entertainment" value in an arena/entertainment district?

    Thank you Mr. Low.

  6. #6
    Addicted to C2E
    Mr. Reality Check

    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Edmonton, Alberta
    Posts
    13,054

    Default

    Jim,

    I have not had an opportunity to do a “thorough” review of the proposed zoning amendments that have been applied for but there are some areas that I think might be “questionable” so here they are:

    "The design of above grade parking structures shall be consistent with the architectural style of the area.”

    Is there really a chance that an iconic arena development will include above grade parking?

    "At such time as an LRT Station has been opened adjacent to the site or a Shared Use Parking Impact Assessment is submitted, the applicant for a development permit may apply for a reduction in the minimum number of parking spaces. The applicant must demonstrate through a Shared use Parking Impact Assessment that by virtue of the use, character, or location of the proposed development, and its relationship to public transit facilities and any other available parking facilities, the parking required for the proposed development may be less than any minimum set out in Schedule 1 of Section 54 of the Zoning Bylaw."

    Is it intended that these “shared use” parking stalls be controlled by the arena (or the arena operator) or will they be controlled by their respective owners if they do not share the same ownership either initially or over time?

    "An above grade pedestrian connection may be provided across 104 Avenue to provide a linkage between developments north and south of 104 Avenue. The above grade connection may be activated by uses which include, but are not limited to retail commercial, restaurants, temporary events and/or exhibits."

    It is my understanding that with 104th Avenue being a “gateway entry” into downtown, it has been city policy to exclude plus-15 connections (noting that a similar policy existed for 109th Street prior to MacEwan’s parkade connection). I know I mentioned my concerns from a design perspective (even manhattan doesn't allow large "bridges" above grade) in yesterday’s questions but wondered if policy areas like this (which I do not necessarily agree with by the way) have been discussed with the City or even how much the overall proposed zoning document may have been discussed with the City prior to submitting the request?

    "The Development Officer shall ensure that new developments and major renovations reflect the Urban Design Policies of the Downtown Plan, the Urban Design Guidelines Manual and the following Design Guidelines and Regulations. Where a conflict arises, the zoning regulations shall prevail."

    Given that “the following Design Guidelines and Regulations” are quite vague, is there a rationale for using them to exclude any requirement for all future phases of the development – which may not occur for 5 or 10 or 15 years – or future major renovations - which may not occure for 20 or 25 or 30 years or more - to comply with the same criteria as other downtown development or redevelopment projects in the City at those points in time?

    "At least 65% of at-grade street Frontage on 102 and 103 Streets between 103 Avenue and 104 Avenue, and 103 Avenue between 102 and 103 Streets shall be developed for retail, services and other commercial uses to provide for commercial continuity and promote pedestrian traffic."

    Is there a reason that 104th Avenue is specifically excluded from what is a pretty nominal 65% of at-grade frontage (manhattan wants 80%) being devoted to commercial continuity and promoting pedestrian traffic?

    The maximum Floor Area Ratio (FAR) for the site as a whole shall not exceed 18.0. Excess density may be transferred between the area north of 104 Avenue and the area of South of 104 Avenue.”

    In your experience, do you expect to be able to maintain “world class iconic architecture” with an FAR of 18.0 (or an even greater FAR if you are transferring density from one side of 104th Avenue to the other) on site(s) of this size (when new york's world trade centre complex will barely reach 15)?

    Building Height shall not exceed 180 m, nor 60 stories.”

    Once the airport overlay has been “removed”, do you see the potential for 60 stories elsewhere in the core (or the north edge for that matter)?

    Public Art

    “a. Public Art on the site should be incorporated into publicly accessible open spaces and may
    also be incorporated into the architectural facades, breaks in the facades of buildings and
    landscaped areas.

    “b. Public Art may be provided in the form of programmed water features and lighting displays.”

    This one isn’t “questionable” from my perspective other than to note it should more appropriately be included in the City’s policy on public art period, not just in a specific zoning schedule.

    Once again, thanks for being here and best wishes on moving this forward (although perhaps not exactly as first proposed). For what it’s worth, you have the support of at least one of your neighbors for what you are trying to accomplish.

    Ken
    "If you did not want much, there was plenty." Harper Lee

  7. #7
    C2E SME
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Sherwood Park, AB
    Posts
    11,489

    Default

    Mr. Low, while I feel that you and your fellow team members are very qualified, I think that many people would agree that Daryl Katz has to be more visible in the Edmonton Arena District planning process. The Katz Group will be asking for huge commitments from the City of Edmonton. Public financing will be required for the arena portion of the development, and possibly other areas impacted by the development of the Arena District. For example, LRT would have to be built and transportation improvements like Gateway Boulevard/Walterdale Bridge would have to be considered. There are many concerns that must be addressed before we go ahead, and I think that Daryl Katz has to validate the concerns of Edmonton residents to win public confidence and support for the Arena District.

    Jim, will Daryl Katz be more involved as the Edmonton Arena District moves ahead? Thank you very much.
    Last edited by The_Cat; 21-04-2010 at 11:43 PM.
    "Talk minus action equals zero." - Joe Keithley, D. O. A.

  8. #8
    I'd rather C2E than work!
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Edmonton (belevedre)
    Posts
    6,527

    Default

    Mr. Low

    My biggest concern is what if katz have submitted to city planning for zoning application for the arena projects.
    katz's zoning application will be approved in later date, then suddenly , maybe one tower have never built anytime in the futue so what happened to the zoning applications that got approved in the first place ??

    thank you for your time, James
    Edmonton Rocks Rocks Rocks

  9. #9
    Addicted to C2E
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Calgary
    Posts
    566

    Default

    Mr. Low

    Can you reveal what existing projects are being used as inspiration for the new downtown Edmonton arena complex? Is it just other arena districts that are being looked at? or are there other iconic structures that Katz Group is looking to for inspiration?

    Thank you.

  10. #10
    Becoming a C2E Power Poster
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Edmonton
    Posts
    172

    Default

    Mr. Low.

    Other then the 2014 date for the arena what is the time table for the other projects?? Or will these projects be done at about the same time??

  11. #11
    First One is Always Free
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Downtown Edmonton (McKay Avenue District)
    Posts
    93

    Default

    Jim, I have one more set of questions focusing on the proposed large (about a block wide) above ground 104 Avenue pedway connection (aka the Winter Garden). I know that this particular item was raised by several of the prior posters, but I have some questions / comments regarding it that as far as I can tell, were not yet raised (or in the case of point 4 below, I've articulated with more detail). They are as follows.


    1. Are there any examples (from anywhere around the world) of above ground pedways that are similar in scale / concept to what the Katz Group is proposing for the Arena District? If so, could examples (including pictures) be posted for us to see / evaluate? If not, is it because what is being proposed by your group is truly unique regarding scale / concept?

    2. Based on renderings made public to date, the proposed pedway structure over 104 Avenue appears to be about one block wide. If it is at a regular pedway height of 15 feet above ground (for the base of the pedway), that will almost certainly create a claustrophobic tunnelling effect below the pedway at a sidewalk / street level (including the significant amplification of traffic noise found in tunnel-like structures). Will consideration be given to ensure that the base of the proposed 104 Avenue pedway is at least 30 feet (or even 45 feet) above the ground level to decrease any tunnelling effect that would be perceived by those walking / driving along 104 Avenue at the ground level?

    3. Another issue with large pedways during daytime hours is the lack of natural sunlight reaching the sidewalk / street level. Would efforts be made by the Katz Group to incorporate, say, light pipes (light tubes) to pass natural sunlight to the area under the proposed 104 Avenue pedway during daytime hours? In addition to the issue of pedway height discussed in the prior point, natural light during the daytime hours under the pedway may help to alleviate the feeling of "being in a tunnel" at the street / sidewalk level.

    4. In the Arena District zoning submission that was made available to the public on April 19, sections 11.1.b (page 7) and 11.3.c (page 10) deal with certain street level urban design issues (blank walls / open spaces / frontage for retail, services, and commercial). However, these sections only deal with 102 and 103 Streets (between 103 and 104 Avenues) and 103 Avenue (between 102 and 103 Streets). I was not able to find any equivalent sections in the zoning submission regarding the street level urban design along 104 Avenue. What is the current intent / plan for the urban design at the street level along 104 Avenue? (I'm thinking in particular about the block-long street frontage under the proposed pedway but feel free to comment about all of the 104 Avenue frontage, from 101 to 104 Streets.)


    As you've probably noticed, the massive pedway proposed to go over 104 Avenue is one of the the biggest "hot button" arena district architectural issues for a good number of us C2E posters. I have no doubt that it would be reasonably possible to create a spectacular indoor Winter Garden area, given the size of the pedway footprint that it would be built upon. However, the street level under this pedway is just as important and without special effort in design, it will be very easy to end up with a 104 Avenue street level ambiance akin to the roadway level at the 118 Avenue pedway (the pedway / underpass between Rexall Place and the exhibition grounds) or the 97 Avenue tunnel under the Legislature Grounds. An outcome at the street level for 104 Avenue that even remotely resembles the two aforementioned examples almost makes me shudder, as that sort of street level urban form should not end up in a downtown area where we want people to feel welcome at the sidewalk / street level.

    As per my post from Wednesday, I do want to reiterate that I am in support of a downtown arena district. However, good urban design will be paramount since once built, Edmontonians will have to live with (and visitors from around the world experience) the arena district's urban form for a long time to come.

    Again, I look forward to your reply.

  12. #12
    C2E Hard Core Contributor
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Oliver
    Posts
    3,194

    Default

    Mr. Low,

    Thank you very much for participating in this.

    I would like to know what the impetus is behind the Winter Garden? Was it suggested by an architect, arena consultant, transportation consultant, member of the Katz group, or members of the public?

    Your hope is to create an Arena District, and the word "District" implies a large area with a diverse collection of loosely related structures and services. Rather than a District I am afraid that the Winter Garden will result in something that is closer to an Arena Mall or Arena Themepark. I think that would be repeating the mistakes of the past, and it would seem to run counter to the city's goals in revitalizing the downtown.
    Last edited by newfangled; 22-04-2010 at 09:10 AM. Reason: grammar

  13. #13

    Default

    Jim,

    How will you ensure that this development will connect to the rest of downtown and the rest of the northedge of downtown Edmonton, everything from street integration to connecting with the pedway system and the LRT. How will your plans mesh with the drafted Edmonton Downtown Plan?

    Also, it would be nice to see you use pictures and video where possible to demonstrate your ideas and plans when responding to these questions
    A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves and traitors are not victims, but accomplices.

  14. #14
    I'd rather C2E than work!
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Holyrood
    Posts
    4,846

    Default

    Hi Jim,

    Thanks for taking the time to participate here on C2E. After reviewing your answers from yesterday's questions, I'm even more concerned by the "Winter Garden" concept than I was before.

    While I'm pleased to see that three sides of the arena will have active facades, I'm curious as to why you feel that 104 Ave. does not deserve the same treatment? Being that this is a major arterial and a highly visible side of the building and in fact the side that more prominently faces the downtown you intend to revitalize, why do you feel that you need to build over the avenue rather than be active on it?

    While you seem to try to differentiate the "Winter Garden" idea from things like City Centre Mall and the pedway system, I don't feel that you have addressed the concerns that brought those comparisons. It is in no small part of these inward-facing developments (no matter what they are called) that many visitors to our city still feel that our downtown is "dead" or at least seriously lacking activity for a city of our size.

    I guess my question is, how do you intend to "revitalize downtown" by building concepts that have so far provably had the opposite effect on our downtown - namely building a sterile face (e.g., lacking in active usage such as retail) on a major and highly visible avenue, and building an indoor facility whose very intent is to take people off the streets where they are most needed?
    Strathcona City Separatist

  15. #15
    C2E Long Term Contributor
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Downtown
    Posts
    32,413

    Default

    Hi Jim, it's me again!

    Re: the arena itself, I think many of us agree that nobody wants to see the concrete block that Rexall Place is now. What they built in Columbus looks outstanding. Will the new arena itself have more pedestrian-friendly features, such as street-level retail/restaurant spaces, and windows?

    p.s. to answer your question from yesterday, the "18,000 seats" was derived from prior media reports.
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

  16. #16
    Partially Addicted to C2E
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Edmonton
    Posts
    221

    Default

    Hi Mr. Low,
    Thank you so much for your interest in helping inform everyone on this super project.

    There is one question I have, and please clarify one of your given answers from Wednesday: "...The advantage of the downtown location is there are over 12,000 parking spaces within a 10 minute walking distance of the site. These are mostly used during the day and could be used for arena events, which mostly take place at night."

    Do you know how the Arena parking strategy will affect the Arts District parking during Citadel and Winspear performances? Performances in these venues can start approximately 7:30 pm. My experience with parking in the Arts District (in City Hall parkade, Citadel/Library parkade, Canada Place Parkade, etc) during Citadel and Winspear performances has mostly seen filled up parking spaces in the evenings due to patrons attending performances. Please clarify if the Arts District parking spaces were included or not in the number of 12,000.

    Thank you in advance for your reply!
    Last edited by mki; 22-04-2010 at 02:31 PM.
    Edmonton is a diverse landscape of business and culture in a beautiful rivervalley setting

  17. #17
    C2E Long Term Contributor
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Downtown Edmonton
    Posts
    48,797

    Default

    Mr.Low,

    Thank you very much for participating in this realm of Q&A, well all appreciate it.

    While vague, I am still pleased at the general direction of proposed uses and overall plan with one exception. That exception being the idea of a 'winter garden'. We have for far too long in this city 'enclosed', 'connected', 'directed', and 'contained' our citizens from real urban form. We look back and loath these errors in judgement and planning. The winter garden would continue this trend and while i would be accepting of a 'plus' connection and some amenities one a raised podium, we must focus more on how to create a vibrant main floor with patios, restaurants, bars, retail, and overt animation. As for your replies from yesterday, I also would like to question the concerns over pedestrian safety and moving people over 104ave. I have visited many modern arenas with no large pedestrian connection other than one at grade with a larger crosswalk. Markets like Boston and NYC move thousands of people in much more congested cities across the rather small distance just fine and this experience and atmosphere is part of what makes pre/post game environments so amazing.

    Why does your team feel we need to head in the opposite urban planning direction, with the winter garden specifically, of most major cities these days?

    I encourage you not believe we are a 'winter city' and rather one of 4 seasons.

    I encourage you to not enclose, but open up

    I encourage you to bring people to the street

    I wish you well on this journey and do hope I am sitting in a new downtown facility come fall 2014.

    Sincerely,

    Ian O'Donnell
    Downtown resident
    Proud Edmontonian
    Proud Oilers season ticket holder
    Last edited by IanO; 22-04-2010 at 03:27 PM.
    www.decl.org

    Ottawa-Edmonton-Vancouver-Edmonton

  18. #18
    grish
    Guest

    Default

    Hello,
    I agree with all these concerns with the large pedway over the 104 ave.

    My question is:
    Would you please reconsider building that connection?

    thank you.

  19. #19
    Partially Addicted to C2E
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Edmonton, Canada
    Posts
    406

    Default

    I'd like to echo IanO's comments above, and specifically request an outdoor jumbo-tron with a live feed of broadcast games at an outdoor/semi-covered venue with comfortable seating somewhere near the arena. What a great way to pull residents, workers, and visitors into the heart of the district who may not otherwise know what all the fuss is about, or who may not be able to afford season tickets. Can you imagine the festive atmosphere during playoffs as the crowds mingle after games?

    People could still choose to watch from the comfort of their own home, or the pub but having the ability to create a special outdoor event might be kind of unique for the city.

    It could double as a park that could play host to pre-game festivities or other special events when there aren't any home games at the rink.

    Finally, I'd like to see you guys offer some incentives to seasons ticket holders to ride the ETS to the game. As a previous poster mentioned, you aren't the only game in town many evenings, and as downtown continues to grow, congestion and parking issues, will only be exacerbated by the presence of the arena.

    Perhaps you could throw in an annual bus pass with each seasons pass? Cut a deal with ETS to let people use their single tickets for that night gain entry into the system on the way to and from the game? Even when it's not freezing out some (rich) people will always choose to drive themselves, but if you get creative, you can help to alleviate the burden on our roads.

    Thanks again for you time!
    Jordan Schroder
    Proposing solutions to problems that don't exist since 2007

  20. #20
    Forum Administrator *
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Edmonton
    Posts
    2,617
    Blog Entries
    2

    Default

    Thank you all for participating.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •