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[James Bay] Hilton Garden Inn | 9-storeys | Canceled in 2007


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#21 Baro

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Posted 05 May 2007 - 06:31 PM

I have to admit, it's a bit boxy, but I do actually like it. It's not sleek and modern, but it also isn't trying to "blend in" to the point of looking horribly tacky. It's shape and style seems to be based on actual design, rather than a simple lack of it. It gives a solid corporate look, a look that suits an office building. Would I want all office projects in the future to look like this? no. Would I mind 5 more like this? no. 10 more like this? Maybe it's time to mix it up a bit. But as a single project that is hopefully the first of MANY, I give it a B. More glass, a little taller, and a "360 design" (no front, all sides equally nice and well designed) and I'll give it an A
"beats greezy have baked donut-dough"

#22 G-Man

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Posted 06 May 2007 - 08:13 AM

I have heard they are reworking the south side of the building. I think that this will be the coolest office building in Victoria anyways. I was wondering if it will be the biggest?

Visit my blog at: https://www.sidewalkingvictoria.com 

 

It has a whole new look!

 


#23 hungryryno

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Posted 09 May 2007 - 05:14 PM

hey all -
what does the new office tower Gateway Green have to do with the Hilton project???

#24 Baro

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Posted 09 May 2007 - 07:42 PM

We're easily distracted animals and need our shepard-mods to wrangle our posts into the right areas as we can't posibly do it our selves.

I wish that post was sarcastic...
"beats greezy have baked donut-dough"

#25 Rob Randall

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Posted 08 July 2007 - 07:38 PM

The Development Permit for this project goes before Committee of the Whole Thursday, July 12 at 9 a.m.

"[Randall's] aesthetic poll was more accurate than his political acumen"

-Tom Hawthorne, Toronto Globe and Mail


#26 Mike K.

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Posted 13 July 2007 - 07:37 AM

Councillors argue, developer fumes over Inner Harbour hotel project
BY KIMWESTAD Times Colonist staff

The bright-orange exterior is all but gone but that quibble seemed forgotten yesterday, as Victoria councillors grew frustrated instead about who should weigh in on the design of a new hotel in a prime Inner Harbour location.

And as councillors argued, the developer fumed.

“I’m still frustrated with the whole process,” said Zack Bhatia, who wants to replace the Days Inn building at 427 Belleville St. with a nine-storey, 155-room hotel.

If the project is delayed one more time, Bhatia said, it’s unlikely it will proceed because construction costs are increasing by an average of one per cent a month.

“I just want an answer — yes or no. ... Good God, you have to think about other people’s lives at stake here.”

His initial plan for the site went to council in May. It was roundly criticized, particularly for the bright-orange painted concrete on much of the water-view building.

Bhatia and architect Thomas Moore revamped the project, returning to the city yesterday with a plan that several councillors said was much improved, but still needed “tweaking.”

The building is in a development-permit area. That means it needs council approval of exterior design, building finishes and landscaping. But it’s not required to go to public hearing or be subject to input from other groups, such as the advisory design panel. That panel is a group of architecture and design experts who provide opinions to council. That’s where the problem started. Because the Inner Harbour is so important to Victoria, any building has huge significance, said Coun. Pam Madoff.

Yet the design guidelines the city has set for that area seem minimal, she said. Small projects seem to get as much scrutiny as a large hotel on a premier site, she said.

“It’s too important for it just to be a council and staff decision. The applicants may have issues about time. Well, I’ve got issues about how we build out our city.”

Madoff wanted the advisory design panel to review the design, and report back to council with its opinion.

Since the panel doesn’t meet until the first week of August, the developer worried about delay. And Coun. Geoff Young was clearly irked by the process, which isn’t required and hadn’t been suggested to the developer before.

“One of the reasons I wanted to run for council again is because I was hearing this feedback from the community, that this council just makes up things as it goes along, everything takes forever and you don’t know where you stand,” Young said.

“I don’t pretend to be an architect. But we’re not supposed to be making up things as we go along. We’re a government. We’re supposed to tell people how we do things, and then do them that way.”

Coun. Bea Holland also said she was concerned about council changing the rules midway through the process.

But others on council said the expertise of the design panel could be gathered without causing delay, and that more eyes looking at such an important project could only be positive.

The design panel will look at the development the first week of August, and report back to council Aug. 23.

If council approves it then, Bhatia said, he should still be able to demolish the current building in March. “But one more delay would be the nail in the coffin.”

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#27 Ms. B. Havin

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Posted 13 July 2007 - 08:28 AM

I have to say I love Young's being quoted in this way in this context. What I mean is that usually the critics of Council who argue that Council makes it up as it goes along do so because they're pissed off that Council approves development. Yet here we have Young pointing out that it goes the other way, too: Council is stalling, thwarting, and retarding development because it makes things up as it goes along, changes the rules mid-stream, and does all that other "nasty" stuff that supposedly has led to the "horrifying" building "boom" that "disfigures" "our" city and "panders" to developers' "greed"... Tee-hee, shoe's on the other foot this time, eh?

As for this proposal: haven't seen its rendering in person, but it sounds awful enough, so I'm with Councillor Madoff on this one.

See?, everyone picks and chooses their preferred "making things up as it goes along" mode...! Next time the holier-than-thou anti-everything and development-is-a-crime-and-a-moral-blemish crowd come out with attacks on Council for its "inability to respect the rules," maybe they'll remember this particular instance...
When you buy a game, you buy the rules. Play happens in the space between the rules.

#28 m0nkyman

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Posted 13 July 2007 - 08:42 AM

A performance art piece entitiled " TO BE A SURFACE PARKING LOT" ~ by Victoria City Council.

#29 aastra

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Posted 13 July 2007 - 09:45 AM

Has anybody offered the developer any concrete suggestions re: the esthetic issues? Critics around the world take note: there's no comment more vacuous than the infamous "needs more tweaking" claptrap. Whenever people tell me my work needs more tweaking, I reply that I anticipated the suggestion and thoroughly tweaked everything in advance.

If this design is indeed a nightmare that we'll all regret, then somehow the city needs to articulate why it's a nightmare that we'll all regret. This really shouldn't be such a difficult task. Take the various disasters around town (Trendwest, old Laurel Point buildings, Harbour Towers, first phase of the Songhees, Sitkum Lodge) and document exactly what's wrong with them.

#30 Ms. B. Havin

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Posted 13 July 2007 - 02:39 PM

@ aastra: good question, but the only concrete move seems to be that the proponent has to go before the August ADP for input, before coming back to Council in September (?) for approval. Perhaps the hope is that the ADP will give more than tweaking suggestions?
When you buy a game, you buy the rules. Play happens in the space between the rules.

#31 Rob Randall

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Posted 13 July 2007 - 05:53 PM

I don't have a photo, sorry but maybe I can describe the massing.

It's a long box, running north/south. The narrow end of the box faces the harbour. the east side (facing the Grand Pacific and the Leg.) has a gentle arc or curve running the length of it. This is the side that has a laneway running the length of the building with a large awning above the entrance that tilts up and another smaller one near it that tilts down.

"[Randall's] aesthetic poll was more accurate than his political acumen"

-Tom Hawthorne, Toronto Globe and Mail


#32 gumgum

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Posted 15 July 2007 - 08:22 AM

Inner Harbour debate sums up an old game
Times Colonist
Published: Sunday, July 15, 2007


Re: "Councillors argue, developer fumes over Inner Harbour hotel project," July 13.

This headline encapsulates an age-old ploy whenever someone wants to build something in excess of the existing zoning regulations.

The developer puts forward an outrageous proposal that is promptly rejected, and the process is repeated until the developer announces he is tired of all the delays and roadblocks that council puts in the way, and that if he doesn't get approval this time he will abandon the project.
Whether that is the case here is immaterial: In a general sense, what eventually gets approved is what the developer always wanted -- and which is still in excess of the regulations.

The problem lies with architects, developers and municipal politicians alike. All of them seem to look at plans and blueprints in isolation, disregarding the rest of the cityscape.

Peter Weinrich,

Victoria.


© Times Colonist (Victoria) 2007



#33 aastra

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Posted 15 July 2007 - 10:50 AM

The problem lies with architects, developers and municipal politicians alike. All of them seem to look at plans and blueprints in isolation, disregarding the rest of the cityscape.


So is he saying he wants yet another bland & uninspired hotel/motel in James Bay, and a brand new one at that?

Maybe I've misunderstood the controversy on this one. I thought the developer had proposed a typical James Bay architectural bore, thereby raising the hackles of officialdom. In other words, the city wants the developer to disregard the cityscape in the immediate vicinity. Wasn't that the point Mrs. Madoff was trying to make?

#34 gumgum

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Posted 17 July 2007 - 07:21 AM

Hotel developer right to be frustrated
Times Colonist
Published: Tuesday, July 17, 2007


Re: "Inner Harbour debate sums up an old game," July 15.

It is distressing when the Times Colonist publishes letters that misinform debate. I refer to the letter criticizing the architect and developer of the hotel planned for Belleville Street next to the Grand Pacific.

Having taken the trouble to look at drawings of both the original design for the proposed hotel at 427 Belleville St. and the redesign submitted to council, I can say that neither design was "outrageous."
In fact, the original proposal had passed all levels of scrutiny by city planning and design staff. It went to council with full staff approval.

Councillors chose to gallop off in multiple, independent directions, seeking changes related to their personal taste and ignoring the recommendations of professional staff.

The developer is right to be tired of "all the delays and roadblocks," because he and his architect have followed all the rules and guidelines set by the city. There are no variances being sought. The design and the redesign, would make, in my view, excellent additions to our waterfront.

The council has now asked for a design panel review, a step that it rejected in reformulating its processes for waterfront developments.

If I was the developer, I would be frustrated too.

Michael Hayes,

Victoria.


© Times Colonist (Victoria) 2007



#35 aastra

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Posted 17 July 2007 - 09:12 AM

I sure wish we could get a look at this one.

#36 concorde

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Posted 04 April 2008 - 05:11 PM

I have official word that this project is now CANCELLED.

#37 Mike K.

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Posted 04 April 2008 - 09:56 PM

Ok. Thanks for the update.

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#38 aastra

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Posted 05 April 2008 - 12:42 PM

Now I really wish we could get a look at this one. We'll probably find out it was good.

#39 G-Man

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Posted 05 April 2008 - 01:48 PM

I thought this was the orange monstrosity. If it was I saw pics at the UDI Christmas dig and it was indeed hideous.

#40 aastra

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Posted 05 April 2008 - 02:17 PM

How is that possible? It made it past the keen scrutiny of the Advisory Design Panel, didn't it?

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