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1137 esplanade - your comments needed!

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  • Meg Lousteau
    Dear HFTA members, As many of you will recall, Historic Restoration Inc. (HRI) is proposing a 77-unit mixed use development at the corner of Rampart and
    Message 1 of 3 , Jan 6, 2009
    • 0 Attachment
      Dear HFTA members,

      As many of you will recall, Historic Restoration Inc. (HRI) is proposing a 77-unit mixed use development at the corner of Rampart and Esplanade.  To recap, the proposal is for a 5 story building, with parking and one commercial space on the first floor, and with residential apartments on the next four floors, centered around a second-floor courtyard. 

      When we brought this to the membership a few months ago, we were pleased with the idea of having something on this long-vacant lot, but had a few major concerns.  (Below, in blue, is a copy of the letter we emailed to HRI back in September.) Our concerns were the design, the lack of sufficient commercial space, and the density.

      Naydja, Jessica and I had an opportunity to meet with HRI recently to discuss their revised plans.  They have made many changes to the exterior of the building, including using design to break up the massing.  However, the density remains the same, and there is still only one commercial component.  Addtionally, the design is still quite massive for the lot, an opinion shared by the Architectural Review Committee (ARC) of the Historic District Landmarks Commission (whose letter is below, in red).  Specifically, the ARC states that " The ARC agreed that alternative massing conditions should be studied. Consider multiple, thinner buildings or creating a massing, rather than façade design, that reads as multiple buildings. Consider a top floor setback and treating the third story as an attic condition. There should be multiple building entrances on Esplanade Avenue and a reinforcement of retail space on the North Rampart elevation. The ARC agreed that the project as proposed seems out of scale with the neighborhood. In addition to the size of the building the ratio of building to unbuilt lot areas is not in keeping with the surroundings. The ARC recommends that you work out the needed zoning waivers and resubmit a design that will be allowed. "

      This matter is coming before the City Planning Commission one week from today.  We would like to submit written comments by tomorrow, so please email any comments you have to me immediately at meglousteau@....

      Thanks,
      Meg



      September 30, 2008

      Dear Pres,

      Thank you so much for meeting with myself and Meg Lousteau of the Historic Faubourg Treme Association, as well as several other members of the community and HRI staff to discuss the proposal 1137 Esplanade, at the downtown lake corner of N. Rampart Street.

      We brought the plans to our board and to neighborhood association meeting for review and discussion, and overall, the response was very positive.  Our neighbors would love to see some development on that vacant corner.  However, there were three areas of concern:

      Density - given the allowable number of units, the proposal to put 77 units on the parcel is excessive.  Although we did not come up with a figure, the neighborhood would like to see a substantial reduction in the number of units.

      Commercial space
      - the neighborhood was delighted by the idea of a corner commercial space, and in fact, would love to see additional commercial spaces on the ground floor, particularly along the Rampart side.  (Adding such space there, and reducing the number of apartments, would also solve the unworkable stacked parking plan currently proposed.)  However, we would also like to see some parking spaces reserved for visitors to the commercial uses to make them more viable.

      Design - we appreciate that you were under a firm deadline to come up with the design.  However, this parcel is very prominent and visible, and sits at the intersection of the three most historic neighborhoods of the city.  Because of this significance, the neighbors consider the submitted design an inappropriate proposal. Specifically, the design does not respond to the character of Tremé – or of the adjoining Marigny and French Quarter neighborhoods.  In sum, we do not believe that the current design is appropriate for the location.

      We welcome new residential and commercial neighbors, and look forward to reviewing a new proposal.

      Regards,
      Dr. Naydja Bynum
      President, Historic Faubourg Treme Association



      NEW ORLEANS HISTORIC DISTRICT LANDMARKS COMMISSION

      CENTRAL BUSINESS DISTRICT HISTORIC DISTRICT LANDMARKS COMMISSION

      C

      C. RAY NAGIN

      MAYOR


      C. ELLIOTT PERKINS

      EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

      ITY OF NEW ORLEANS



      January 6, 2009


      KW Esplanade Properties, LLC

      1901 Royal Street

      New Orleans, LA 70116


      Re: 1137 Esplanade Avenue


      Dear KW Esplanade Properties, LLC,

      This letter confirms the actions of the Architectural Review Committee (ARC) of the New Orleans Historic District Landmarks Commission at its meeting of 12/18/2008 concerning your application for the following work: Proposal to construct a four-story apartment complex.

      At that time the ARC made the following comments and recommendations: The ARC agreed that alternative massing conditions should be studied. Consider multiple, thinner buildings or creating a massing, rather than façade design, that reads as multiple buildings. Consider a top floor setback and treating the third story as an attic condition. There should be multiple building entrances on Esplanade Avenue and a reinforcement of retail space on the North Rampart elevation. The ARC agreed that the project as proposed seems out of scale with the neighborhood. In addition to the size of the building the ratio of building to unbuilt lot areas is not in keeping with the surroundings. The ARC recommends that you work out the needed zoning waivers and resubmit a design that will be allowed.

      This application will be placed on the agenda for the next Architectural Review Committee meeting to be held January 27, 2009. I will call you to inform you of your scheduled appointment time. If you have any questions concerning this matter feel free to contact the office at 658-7040.

      Sincerely,

      Sevanne Hagen Steiner

      Building Plans Examiner, Downtown Districts

      cc: HCI Architecture, Inc.

      Approved _____ C. Elliott Perkins, Director

      1340 POYDRAS STREET, SUITE 1152 | NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA | 70112

      PHONE 504.658.7040 | FAX 504.658.3802

      WWW.CITYOFNO.COM





      Meg Lousteau
      meglousteau@...
      504.621.4080

    • LINDA BURKETT-HARRIS
      I STILL OPPOSE THE PROJECT DUE TO THE DENSITY & LACK OF PARKING IN THE PROJECT.  PERHAPS, THE RESIDENTS COMMITTEE OFF THE BUILDING ACROSS ESPLANADE FROM THIS
      Message 2 of 3 , Jan 6, 2009
      • 0 Attachment
        I STILL OPPOSE THE PROJECT DUE TO THE DENSITY & LACK OF PARKING IN THE PROJECT.  PERHAPS, THE RESIDENTS COMMITTEE OFF THE BUILDING ACROSS ESPLANADE FROM THIS PROJECT SHOULD ALSO BE INVITED TO PARTICIPATE IN THE DIALOG, ALONG WITH OTHER NEIGHBORHOOD ORGANIZATIONS.
        LINDA

        --- On Tue, 1/6/09, Meg Lousteau <meglousteau@...> wrote:
        From: Meg Lousteau <meglousteau@...>
        Subject: [hftaneworleans] 1137 esplanade - your comments needed!
        To: hftaneworleans@yahoogroups.com
        Date: Tuesday, January 6, 2009, 11:52 AM

        Dear HFTA members,

        As many of you will recall, Historic Restoration Inc. (HRI) is proposing a 77-unit mixed use development at the corner of Rampart and Esplanade.  To recap, the proposal is for a 5 story building, with parking and one commercial space on the first floor, and with residential apartments on the next four floors, centered around a second-floor courtyard. 

        When we brought this to the membership a few months ago, we were pleased with the idea of having something on this long-vacant lot, but had a few major concerns.  (Below, in blue, is a copy of the letter we emailed to HRI back in September.) Our concerns were the design, the lack of sufficient commercial space, and the density.

        Naydja, Jessica and I had an opportunity to meet with HRI recently to discuss their revised plans.  They have made many changes to the exterior of the building, including using design to break up the massing.  However, the density remains the same, and there is still only one commercial component.  Addtionally, the design is still quite massive for the lot, an opinion shared by the Architectural Review Committee (ARC) of the Historic District Landmarks Commission (whose letter is below, in red).  Specifically, the ARC states that " The ARC agreed that alternative massing conditions should be studied. Consider multiple, thinner buildings or creating a massing, rather than façade design, that reads as multiple buildings. Consider a top floor setback and treating the third story as an attic condition. There should be multiple building entrances on Esplanade Avenue and a reinforcement of retail space on the North Rampart elevation. The ARC agreed that the project as proposed seems out of scale with the neighborhood. In addition to the size of the building the ratio of building to unbuilt lot areas is not in keeping with the surroundings. The ARC recommends that you work out the needed zoning waivers and resubmit a design that will be allowed. "

        This matter is coming before the City Planning Commission one week from today.  We would like to submit written comments by tomorrow, so please email any comments you have to me immediately at meglousteau@ gmail.com.

        Thanks,
        Meg



        September 30, 2008

        Dear Pres,

        Thank you so much for meeting with myself and Meg Lousteau of the Historic Faubourg Treme Association, as well as several other members of the community and HRI staff to discuss the proposal 1137 Esplanade, at the downtown lake corner of N. Rampart Street.

        We brought the plans to our board and to neighborhood association meeting for review and discussion, and overall, the response was very positive.  Our neighbors would love to see some development on that vacant corner.  However, there were three areas of concern:

        Density - given the allowable number of units, the proposal to put 77 units on the parcel is excessive.  Although we did not come up with a figure, the neighborhood would like to see a substantial reduction in the number of units.

        Commercial space
        - the neighborhood was delighted by the idea of a corner commercial space, and in fact, would love to see additional commercial spaces on the ground floor, particularly along the Rampart side.  (Adding such space there, and reducing the number of apartments, would also solve the unworkable stacked parking plan currently proposed.)  However, we would also like to see some parking spaces reserved for visitors to the commercial uses to make them more viable.

        Design - we appreciate that you were under a firm deadline to come up with the design.  However, this parcel is very prominent and visible, and sits at the intersection of the three most historic neighborhoods of the city.  Because of this significance, the neighbors consider the submitted design an inappropriate proposal. Specifically, the design does not respond to the character of Tremé – or of the adjoining Marigny and French Quarter neighborhoods.  In sum, we do not believe that the current design is appropriate for the location.

        We welcome new residential and commercial neighbors, and look forward to reviewing a new proposal.

        Regards,
        Dr. Naydja Bynum
        President, Historic Faubourg Treme Association



        NEW ORLEANS HISTORIC DISTRICT LANDMARKS COMMISSION

        CENTRAL BUSINESS DISTRICT HISTORIC DISTRICT LANDMARKS COMMISSION

        C

        C. RAY NAGIN

        MAYOR


        C. ELLIOTT PERKINS

        EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

        ITY OF NEW ORLEANS



        January 6, 2009


        KW Esplanade Properties, LLC

        1901 Royal Street

        New Orleans, LA 70116


        Re: 1137 Esplanade Avenue


        Dear KW Esplanade Properties, LLC,

        This letter confirms the actions of the Architectural Review Committee (ARC) of the New Orleans Historic District Landmarks Commission at its meeting of 12/18/2008 concerning your application for the following work: Proposal to construct a four-story apartment complex.

        At that time the ARC made the following comments and recommendations: The ARC agreed that alternative massing conditions should be studied. Consider multiple, thinner buildings or creating a massing, rather than façade design, that reads as multiple buildings. Consider a top floor setback and treating the third story as an attic condition. There should be multiple building entrances on Esplanade Avenue and a reinforcement of retail space on the North Rampart elevation. The ARC agreed that the project as proposed seems out of scale with the neighborhood. In addition to the size of the building the ratio of building to unbuilt lot areas is not in keeping with the surroundings. The ARC recommends that you work out the needed zoning waivers and resubmit a design that will be allowed.

        This application will be placed on the agenda for the next Architectural Review Committee meeting to be held January 27, 2009. I will call you to inform you of your scheduled appointment time. If you have any questions concerning this matter feel free to contact the office at 658-7040.

        Sincerely,

        Sevanne Hagen Steiner

        Building Plans Examiner, Downtown Districts

        cc: HCI Architecture, Inc.

        Approved _____ C. Elliott Perkins, Director

        1340 POYDRAS STREET, SUITE 1152 | NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA | 70112

        PHONE 504.658.7040 | FAX 504.658.3802

        WWW.CITYOFNO. COM





        Meg Lousteau
        meglousteau@ vcpora.org
        504.621.4080


      • Meg Lousteau
        Thanks, Linda. We have spoken to the Quarter and Marigny groups, and one of the Quarter groups is in support of our position. We haven t really had a chance
        Message 3 of 3 , Jan 7, 2009
        • 0 Attachment
          Thanks, Linda.  We have spoken to the Quarter and Marigny groups, and one of the Quarter groups is in support of our position.  We haven't really had a chance to discuss with the residents of Colonial Condos - we should make an effort to get them  involved in the neighborhood association.  -Meg


          Meg Lousteau
          meglousteau@...
          504.621.4080



          On Tue, Jan 6, 2009 at 9:47 PM, LINDA BURKETT-HARRIS <lindaofno@...> wrote:

          I STILL OPPOSE THE PROJECT DUE TO THE DENSITY & LACK OF PARKING IN THE PROJECT.  PERHAPS, THE RESIDENTS COMMITTEE OFF THE BUILDING ACROSS ESPLANADE FROM THIS PROJECT SHOULD ALSO BE INVITED TO PARTICIPATE IN THE DIALOG, ALONG WITH OTHER NEIGHBORHOOD ORGANIZATIONS.
          LINDA

          --- On Tue, 1/6/09, Meg Lousteau <meglousteau@...> wrote:
          From: Meg Lousteau <meglousteau@...>
          Subject: [hftaneworleans] 1137 esplanade - your comments needed!
          To: hftaneworleans@yahoogroups.com
          Date: Tuesday, January 6, 2009, 11:52 AM


          Dear HFTA members,

          As many of you will recall, Historic Restoration Inc. (HRI) is proposing a 77-unit mixed use development at the corner of Rampart and Esplanade.  To recap, the proposal is for a 5 story building, with parking and one commercial space on the first floor, and with residential apartments on the next four floors, centered around a second-floor courtyard. 

          When we brought this to the membership a few months ago, we were pleased with the idea of having something on this long-vacant lot, but had a few major concerns.  (Below, in blue, is a copy of the letter we emailed to HRI back in September.) Our concerns were the design, the lack of sufficient commercial space, and the density.

          Naydja, Jessica and I had an opportunity to meet with HRI recently to discuss their revised plans.  They have made many changes to the exterior of the building, including using design to break up the massing.  However, the density remains the same, and there is still only one commercial component.  Addtionally, the design is still quite massive for the lot, an opinion shared by the Architectural Review Committee (ARC) of the Historic District Landmarks Commission (whose letter is below, in red).  Specifically, the ARC states that " The ARC agreed that alternative massing conditions should be studied. Consider multiple, thinner buildings or creating a massing, rather than façade design, that reads as multiple buildings. Consider a top floor setback and treating the third story as an attic condition. There should be multiple building entrances on Esplanade Avenue and a reinforcement of retail space on the North Rampart elevation. The ARC agreed that the project as proposed seems out of scale with the neighborhood. In addition to the size of the building the ratio of building to unbuilt lot areas is not in keeping with the surroundings. The ARC recommends that you work out the needed zoning waivers and resubmit a design that will be allowed. "

          This matter is coming before the City Planning Commission one week from today.  We would like to submit written comments by tomorrow, so please email any comments you have to me immediately at meglousteau@ gmail.com.

          Thanks,
          Meg



          September 30, 2008

          Dear Pres,

          Thank you so much for meeting with myself and Meg Lousteau of the Historic Faubourg Treme Association, as well as several other members of the community and HRI staff to discuss the proposal 1137 Esplanade, at the downtown lake corner of N. Rampart Street.

          We brought the plans to our board and to neighborhood association meeting for review and discussion, and overall, the response was very positive.  Our neighbors would love to see some development on that vacant corner.  However, there were three areas of concern:

          Density - given the allowable number of units, the proposal to put 77 units on the parcel is excessive.  Although we did not come up with a figure, the neighborhood would like to see a substantial reduction in the number of units.

          Commercial space
          - the neighborhood was delighted by the idea of a corner commercial space, and in fact, would love to see additional commercial spaces on the ground floor, particularly along the Rampart side.  (Adding such space there, and reducing the number of apartments, would also solve the unworkable stacked parking plan currently proposed.)  However, we would also like to see some parking spaces reserved for visitors to the commercial uses to make them more viable.

          Design - we appreciate that you were under a firm deadline to come up with the design.  However, this parcel is very prominent and visible, and sits at the intersection of the three most historic neighborhoods of the city.  Because of this significance, the neighbors consider the submitted design an inappropriate proposal. Specifically, the design does not respond to the character of Tremé – or of the adjoining Marigny and French Quarter neighborhoods.  In sum, we do not believe that the current design is appropriate for the location.

          We welcome new residential and commercial neighbors, and look forward to reviewing a new proposal.

          Regards,
          Dr. Naydja Bynum
          President, Historic Faubourg Treme Association



          NEW ORLEANS HISTORIC DISTRICT LANDMARKS COMMISSION

          CENTRAL BUSINESS DISTRICT HISTORIC DISTRICT LANDMARKS COMMISSION

          C

          C. RAY NAGIN

          MAYOR


          C. ELLIOTT PERKINS

          EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

          ITY OF NEW ORLEANS



          January 6, 2009


          KW Esplanade Properties, LLC

          1901 Royal Street

          New Orleans, LA 70116


          Re: 1137 Esplanade Avenue


          Dear KW Esplanade Properties, LLC,

          This letter confirms the actions of the Architectural Review Committee (ARC) of the New Orleans Historic District Landmarks Commission at its meeting of 12/18/2008 concerning your application for the following work: Proposal to construct a four-story apartment complex.

          At that time the ARC made the following comments and recommendations: The ARC agreed that alternative massing conditions should be studied. Consider multiple, thinner buildings or creating a massing, rather than façade design, that reads as multiple buildings. Consider a top floor setback and treating the third story as an attic condition. There should be multiple building entrances on Esplanade Avenue and a reinforcement of retail space on the North Rampart elevation. The ARC agreed that the project as proposed seems out of scale with the neighborhood. In addition to the size of the building the ratio of building to unbuilt lot areas is not in keeping with the surroundings. The ARC recommends that you work out the needed zoning waivers and resubmit a design that will be allowed.

          This application will be placed on the agenda for the next Architectural Review Committee meeting to be held January 27, 2009. I will call you to inform you of your scheduled appointment time. If you have any questions concerning this matter feel free to contact the office at 658-7040.

          Sincerely,

          Sevanne Hagen Steiner

          Building Plans Examiner, Downtown Districts

          cc: HCI Architecture, Inc.

          Approved _____ C. Elliott Perkins, Director

          1340 POYDRAS STREET, SUITE 1152 | NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA | 70112

          PHONE 504.658.7040 | FAX 504.658.3802

          WWW.CITYOFNO. COM





          Meg Lousteau
          meglousteau@ vcpora.org
          504.621.4080



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