MOFO Mixed Use at Morganford and Connecticut

Discuss construction activity, major renovations, office projects, streetscape improvements, etc. in South City -- defined by the area south of Interstate 44/55.
rbb wrote:
Thu Jan 24, 2019 9:16 am
chriss752 wrote:
Wed Jan 23, 2019 10:03 pm
Roofline still needs to be painted
Curious what you mean by this. Are they just painting the green bit at the top now or are they installing a cornice as was shown in the rendering?

-RBB
No cornice was ever planned for this project. They are just painting the green top, "roofline", and that's all. Not sure when they'll start on it.
Caveat: This is a tremendous project for the neighborhood and city and will be a foundation for future building in the area and city as a whole. Massing and relationship to the street is phenomenal.

Rendering is...crisp. Finished product is...not.
chriss752 wrote:
Thu Jan 24, 2019 8:33 pm
rbb wrote:
Thu Jan 24, 2019 9:16 am
chriss752 wrote:
Wed Jan 23, 2019 10:03 pm
Roofline still needs to be painted
Curious what you mean by this. Are they just painting the green bit at the top now or are they installing a cornice as was shown in the rendering?

-RBB
No cornice was ever planned for this project. They are just painting the green top, "roofline", and that's all. Not sure when they'll start on it.
Never mind... :oops: I swear every time I looked at that rendering I saw the roof hanging over those tacked-on corten panels. Had to blow it up and look closely to see that's not right. Not sure what my brain has been doing... (that can be true both in re: to this specific thing and in general)

Thanks for clearing it up,

-RBB
^RBB I agree, that nearest corner in the rendering looks like an overhang but then further along the wall it doesn't. It's like an Escher drawing.
The alley side had it's last gray corrugated metal put up yesterday. This photo was taken this morning.

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The decks/terraces back here still needs the same attention as the others (brick backsplash). We could see the brick begin going in next week along with the new sidewalk being poured. If I were the owner of this, I would've wanted the garage entrance to be in the alley instead of on Connecticut. It's hard to see cars coming down Connecticut when pulling out of the alley because of cars parked on the street. In addition to this, I would've moved the apartment entrance to Morgan Ford and swung a retail space around to Connecticut.

QUESTION: Has anyone heard who the retail tenants might be in this?
newstl2020 wrote:
Thu Jan 24, 2019 10:37 pm
Rendering is...crisp. Finished product is...not.
Finished product? It looks like this one still has a ways to go.
chriss752 wrote: In addition to this, I would've moved the apartment entrance to Morgan Ford and swung a retail space around to Connecticut.
That's an interesting idea. What makes you think Connecticut would have been better for some of the retail space? I feel like MorganFord is already pretty light on foot traffic, and that it's best (for the business/tenant and district in general) to concentrate activity along the main drag.
wabash wrote:
Fri Jan 25, 2019 11:28 pm
chriss752 wrote: In addition to this, I would've moved the apartment entrance to Morgan Ford and swung a retail space around to Connecticut.
That's an interesting idea. What makes you think Connecticut would have been better for some of the retail space? I feel like MorganFord is already pretty light on foot traffic, and that it's best (for the business/tenant and district in general) to concentrate activity along the main drag.
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The above layout basically gives you an idea of me "swinging around" the retail space. Let me explain more.

1. Blue is the existing retail bays. The green line would be the expanded retail space which gives more room for another café, a bank or some other store of retail concept.
2. Next to the green line is a purple box which would be where the second staircase would go. A glass door would be on the ground floor to be more inviting. This could also be a way for residents to access the building if they have a key.
3. The yellow line from here to the alley would be an art wall instead of a gray, corrugated metal shed design. It would be more inviting.
4. The orange line would be the new garage entrance and would basically be a straight shot down the Connecticut/Juniata Alley.
5. The large red box would be the new main entrance for residents. I placed it here because of how residents would have easier access to the main business strip instead of coming out onto a mostly dead street. A parking garage door would be along the backwall along with a handicapped space being outside. The elevator would be near the back as well. The stairs would be connected to this area too but would cross through to the emergency exit.

About 4 or 5 parking spaces would be lost to this configuration.

In all, Connecticut isn't that much better for retail but would add a better look than a blank wall, hole for parking entrance, blank wall, small door and glass, then blank wall and then the storefront. The main hub of activities are still located fronting Morgan Ford, just the space is better used in my opinion.
chriss752 wrote:
Sat Jan 26, 2019 1:02 am
wabash wrote:
Fri Jan 25, 2019 11:28 pm
chriss752 wrote: In addition to this, I would've moved the apartment entrance to Morgan Ford and swung a retail space around to Connecticut.
That's an interesting idea. What makes you think Connecticut would have been better for some of the retail space? I feel like MorganFord is already pretty light on foot traffic, and that it's best (for the business/tenant and district in general) to concentrate activity along the main drag.
Image
The above layout basically gives you an idea of me "swinging around" the retail space. Let me explain more.

1. Blue is the existing retail bays. The green line would be the expanded retail space which gives more room for another café, a bank or some other store of retail concept.
2. Next to the green line is a purple box which would be where the second staircase would go. A glass door would be on the ground floor to be more inviting. This could also be a way for residents to access the building if they have a key.
3. The yellow line from here to the alley would be an art wall instead of a gray, corrugated metal shed design. It would be more inviting.
4. The orange line would be the new garage entrance and would basically be a straight shot down the Connecticut/Juniata Alley.
5. The large red box would be the new main entrance for residents. I placed it here because of how residents would have easier access to the main business strip instead of coming out onto a mostly dead street. A parking garage door would be along the backwall along with a handicapped space being outside. The elevator would be near the back as well. The stairs would be connected to this area too but would cross through to the emergency exit.

About 4 or 5 parking spaces would be lost to this configuration.

In all, Connecticut isn't that much better for retail but would add a better look than a blank wall, hole for parking entrance, blank wall, small door and glass, then blank wall and then the storefront. The main hub of activities are still located fronting Morgan Ford, just the space is better used in my opinion.
Just to make sure I follow your logic and ideas:
1) You would like to reduce the overall retail SF by about 1,000 SF so the residential entrance can be relocated to Morganford
2) You would like to move more retail to Connecticut Street, a "mostly dead" street (your words)
3) You would like to remove two parking spaces so the parking entrance can be located in the alley
4) Due to the above #'s 1-3, gross income is significantly reduced by the removal of about 1,000 SF of gross leasable retail SF combined with relocating retail from a prime retail street to a residential street with less visibility, and two parking spaces are lost, translating in slightly reduced income and a sub-1:1 parking ratio, which the TGS residents were already slightly unhappy with.

Let me know if I've misstated any of your points as it seems that all of them reduce the project's viability from both a return on cost perspective and entitlement perspective by removing parking spaces (even though the neighborhood wants more parking for this project, not less).

Why not leave everything as-is and just paint a mural or other work of art on the existing grey perforated panel that encloses the parking structure on Connecticut? Wouldn't that work?
^^ I see where you're coming from Chris. Some nice thoughts there. And I see now that putting the lobby on MorganFord could actually lead to more foot traffic just with tenants coming and going. But as Phil 2 points out, the fact that "about 4 or 5 parking spaces would be lost to this configuration" is just a non-starter. Unfortunately, I think an apartment in TGS without a parking spot (sub 1:1 ratio) wouldn't garner the interest/rent that a new construction project like this would need to make sense.
Philippe II wrote:
Mon Jan 28, 2019 7:06 pm
Just to make sure I follow your logic and ideas:
1) You would like to reduce the overall retail SF by about 1,000 SF so the residential entrance can be relocated to Morganford
2) You would like to move more retail to Connecticut Street, a "mostly dead" street (your words)
3) You would like to remove two parking spaces so the parking entrance can be located in the alley
4) Due to the above #'s 1-3, gross income is significantly reduced by the removal of about 1,000 SF of gross leasable retail SF combined with relocating retail from a prime retail street to a residential street with less visibility, and two parking spaces are lost, translating in slightly reduced income and a sub-1:1 parking ratio, which the TGS residents were already slightly unhappy with.

Let me know if I've misstated any of your points as it seems that all of them reduce the project's viability from both a return on cost perspective and entitlement perspective by removing parking spaces (even though the neighborhood wants more parking for this project, not less).

Why not leave everything as-is and just paint a mural or other work of art on the existing grey perforated panel that encloses the parking structure on Connecticut? Wouldn't that work?
I would actually think retail would reman the same due to it being stretched down Connecticut. In addition to this, all retail bays are visible as they are along the main strip. Simply put, the corner retail space would be expanded back leaving the main entrance and signage on Morgan Ford. But you understood my points correctly. As for the parking issue, I know know the neighborhood is tight already on parking but it is walkable and the loss of, at most, 5 spaces could be made up in a deal ay 7-11 (whose parking lot is overly sized) but I know liabilities and what not.

I just wanted to think of something different for this location. I wouldn't mind a mural be painted on the gray perforated panels as that would look nicer. In all, this was just an idea that If I were developing it, I would do.
wabash wrote: ^^ I see where you're coming from Chris. Some nice thoughts there. And I see now that putting the lobby on MorganFord could actually lead to more foot traffic just with tenants coming and going. But as Phil 2 points out, the fact that "about 4 or 5 parking spaces would be lost to this configuration" is just a non-starter. Unfortunately, I think an apartment in TGS without a parking spot (sub 1:1 ratio) wouldn't garner the interest/rent that a new construction project like this would need to make sense.
That was the point to add more people along Morgan Ford. I guess we will see how future projects go in terms of parking. I know 3201 Morgan Ford is to have a 1:1 ratio but that site is so small it will be interesting to see how it works.
Looks great in the sunshine.

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Here is the sign that will be placed along Connecticut at the entrance. This will light up so I'm interested in seeing it lit up at night.

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What would it take to get a sign that read "1 BAD-AZ" above "MO-FO"? We need that. Speaks for itself, really.
Progress made today...
- New bits of the sidewalk are being poured, but not all (which is odd to me)
- Although you can't see it, a security camera was put onto the building behind the stop sign along Connecticut.
- The roofline is being painted.
- The 3172 MOFO sign has been moved from the retail space and put somewhere else as it appears drywall is going to go up covering the wood inside (no picture).

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The sidewalk along Morgan Ford has all been poured.

Inside, you can see from the street and barely in the photo (if you zoom in by clicking on the photo), drywall was installed on the walls and ceilings in the retail space.
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Along Connecticut, the green rectangle will have the access/call box to the building while the gray area, to the right of the door, will be home to the "3172 MOFO" sign.
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These photos were taken yesterday.
Any thoughts on retail tenants?
bwcrow1s wrote:
Sat Feb 16, 2019 8:01 am
Any thoughts on retail tenants?
None that I have heard of. However, I was told that they would like a bar, bank and retail store to fill the retail spaces but are open to just one or two tenants if that's the case. Space can be divided.

Here are a ton of photos from today. There are tree boxes along MorganFord and an overly wide sidewalk on Connecticut. Also, there is some brick on 3rd Floor apartments along the alley.
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Below is the main entrance. The 3172 MOFO sign will go on the right...
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And you can see the drywall in the retail spaces here...
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Looking sharp!
Looks like they might be wrapping up by April 1st or so.
MOFO at night. Can't wait to see it when completed when the "3172 MOFO" sign is lit up, whatever retail signage is lit up, people's apartments lit up and more.

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Bartender at the Amsterdam is not impressed. Thinks it is ugly and claims "nobody likes it". Although he does admit it is better than the car wash.
It is a pretty aggressive design; not very user friendly, if you will. I like it, but I'll bet the majority do not. I'm guessing it'll grow on them.
I liked the initial rendering with wood panels and more brick. Then, of course, they switched to cheaper materials. I actually don't mind the COR-10 panels but I don't like the blue ones and there are just too many overall. Also, I think the painted cardboard roof line looks terrible. I'd actually prefer it if the entire thing looked like the plain, light gray section on Connecticut. IMO the whole thing looks better at night when you can't see most of it.
Black02AltimaSE wrote:
Fri Feb 22, 2019 7:57 am
Bartender at the Amsterdam is not impressed. Thinks it is ugly and claims "nobody likes it". Although he does admit it is better than the car wash.
framer wrote: It is a pretty aggressive design; not very user friendly, if you will. I like it, but I'll bet the majority do not. I'm guessing it'll grow on them.
I think that 3201 will be liked more due to it not having the Corten panels, but we will see how that goes. I know JEMA and AHM have more things planned for the neighborhood and the neighbors won't be too happy but the designs are to be more normal and not so daring. The bartender at Amsterdam will appreciate it when he has some more customers coming in.
urban_dilettante wrote: I liked the initial rendering with wood panels and more brick. Then, of course, they switched to cheaper materials. I actually don't mind the COR-10 panels but I don't like the blue ones and there are just too many overall. Also, I think the painted cardboard roof line looks terrible. I'd actually prefer it if the entire thing looked like the plain, light gray section on Connecticut. IMO the whole thing looks better at night when you can't see most of it.
Switching to cheaper materials appears to be a theme in a lot of developments. Blue panels? I'm not sure what you mean by that. If you mean the Corrugated Metal, then it is slate-colored. The roof came out worse than I thought but oh well.
^ will be interesting to see where else in TGS they may have their eye on; for Morgan Ford itself, there's a vacant lot further down on Morgan Ford that would be great to see developed and there's maybe another site or two that could involve a more or less uncontroversial tear down like the old car wash for the MoFo Apts. But it doesn't seem like there are ample opportunities.

And what I'd really like too see is someone bring some mixed-use life to S. Kingshighway. I'm really bummed that nothing has followed the Garcia Development project on the other side of the speedway, and instead we've seen a double-down on auto-oriented uses.

As for the MoFo Apts., while it's certainly not great, I think it's fine and actually prefer it over most mid-sized projects that have been built in the city recently.