[T]he building aesthetics on the plans unfortunately reflect the specialties of the architect chosen for the project, whose portfolio is mostly composed of generic suburban motels and fast-food restaurants.
Welcome back, Dr. Wharton, and thanks for sharing your sound urban planning advice with Citizen Carroll.
This is important stuff. Downtown GSO has been creeping ahead for decades. Now it’s on the cusp of the most significant building boom in my lifetime. We’re about five minutes away from being recognized for an urban renaissance.
It’s an excellent time not to screw things up.
We need a walkable city that works at human scale. The slow fuse has allowed a lot of primo streetscape to survive, but precedent is not wholly encouraging. Or, as Dave puts it, “Will Bellemeade Village Be An Urban Village Or A Suburban Development That Happens To Be Downtown?”
Carroll’s conciliatory remarks about Lindsay St., as appended to the N&R version of Wharton’s article, are good news. Let’s hope he follows through, and that a similar spirit animates the design of the big projects still to come. Our music hall should be welcoming even for people who never go inside (left, Luna just chilling at Lincoln Center). And it's going to take some vision to, say, integrate the Union Square campus into the street life of South Elm Street.
The City has to hang tough on design issues. Downtown’s success has a lot of drivers and a lot of stakeholders, but ultimately it is our public space, and that is a valid public concern.