General Lansing Development

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  • Speak of the devil, the City Pulse has a story on Tanin this week. And as I'd figure, their new restaurant isn't going to be quite as upscale as their previous location:

    FRIDAY, March 29 — Pending light renovations, Tannin’s new home in the former Tabooli building will likely open within the next month. The upscale Italian eatery left Okemos in November to start work on its new east side Lansing home.

    Though it plans to keep its original Okemos upcycled tables and traditional dishes, the restaurant’s prime focus for the new location is more items spanning a more inclusive price range.

    Executive chef Nick Fila said he is excited to get back to work in the kitchen. He is currently finishing up grout work in the restaurant’s renovated bathroom.

  • I am not sure if the project has a page, I can't remember the name[The Metro?:} so I'll say at the old "Y" site there is rebar in place and cement being poured for foundations. Soon the buildings will be growing out of all that dirt they have been moving around for so long.

  • gb, I'm glad to hear that. I was by their maybe a week-and-a-half ago, and I kind of distressed to see them still grading the lot. I figured that since this is a brownfield site that maybe it required more remediation work than normal (more excavation to remove the containaminated soil), or that funding for construction was lagging. So I'm happy to hear it's actually started construction. It'd basically been cleared since late November or December.

  • We have reason to be a little concerned when progress seems to stall here in Lansing, they talk about some projects so long it's almost miraculous to see them get underway.

  • Last update on here was in November, but it looks like the LSJ has a story on the long renovation of the Belen Buildings on Ionia, today:

    Former Belen's Flowers building in downtown Lansing to become apartments, retail space

    LANSING — A long-vacant property near downtown is getting a revamp.

    Blocks from the Capitol, the buildings that once housed Belen's Flowers and the Rosary Book and Gift Shoppe are undergoing a $1.4 million renovation.

    The two buildings at 513-515 and 517-519 Ionia Street should reopen as apartments and retail space this year, developer Scott Schmidt said.

    Schmidt, who owns Vesta Building Industries, lives nearby on Ottawa Street and said he and his kids pass by the buildings often and noticed the space's potential.

    “It’s great when somebody comes in and rehabs these houses,” Schmidt said of the surrounding neighborhood. “But if these abandoned, falling-in buildings are still across the street, there’s not a lot of value.”

    Once the renovations conclude, the buildings will consist of two efficiency units and four two-bedroom apartments alongside 4,700 square feet of retail space. Schmidt said he plans to start leasing the spaces in the next few months.

  • It was a coincidence that I took a good look at some of the buildings going up around town when I read in the City Pulse that they had done the same. They critique some of the recent architectural trends reflected here, from good The Stadium Apartments to the not so good, The Sky View. They explain "spreadsheet design" which is far more concerned with square feet inside, then what goes up on the outside. So we get these metal panels that are in use all over the world. I was thinking the same thing as they point out The Hub and The City Center up on Grand River. The Hub fits into its space nicely as does The City Center on Grand River but at this point, the building looms over the back street on Albert, the building looks gigantic on that street. I think this feeling will change some when there is a wall of windows and shops all lit up. It is a good read and echos many ideas we have talked about on this page.

  • Thanks for pointing out the City Pulse architecture article. I read the Pulse regularly, but hadn't noticed it yet. I agree with much that is stated there, especially on the SkyView design. To me I guess the white panels, starkly against the blue give it an unfinished/insulation/drywall appearance. Would have been interested to see their views on the MarketPlace Apts (and City Market as well). They did note that the Outfield Apts fit in that area due to the "playful" design and being next to the Cooley Stadium. Also in East Lansing the Broad Art Museum - I've been in it several times. I'm one of those that's okay with the design. Interesting that 1855 Place is considered conspicuous, though the art museum, not mentioned, I think is even more so and definitely intended to be. While briefly mentioned, I'd also be interested on their take of the Chandler Crossing/dull design/northern sprawl working perhaps in opposition/contrast (not sure of the word) to the increased density near the city core?

  • I thought one point they made about how the use of local stone and bricks that give a building local references are being replaced by mass-produced metal and plastic panels made in Eastern Europe and used all over the world. I understand spreadsheet design and mass-production[noted in the artical] that does not mean they are forced to use them. I look at the new Willow Street building by The School for the Blind site, where they found a way to use stone and brick and it really looks like a Lansing Michigan building. I hope that developers and architects would start thinking about including local materials not just as a historical reference [something that reproduces an old design] but as a local reference in a contemporary design. Of course, someplace like the art museum which is not supposed to fit in, and the new buildings of 1855 Place do not look like Lansing buildings of the past anyway but they have interesting designs i.e. not boring or ugly and I think are good examples of contemporary architectural design and of 21st Centuary Lansing and MSU.

  • edited April 13

    A long-sought after project is seeing it's day at Fenner Nature Center:

    And I can not even tell you how happy I am that they are tearing up Mt. Hope east of MLK (to Osband), again, ostensibly for a CSO project, but it will also mean the road gets redone, I believe:

    Speaking of Mt. Hope, resurfacing begins west of Pleasant Grove imminently, and east of Aurelius this summer.

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