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RETROFITTING OLDER COMMERCIAL STRIPS Presentation to City of Edmonton Planning and Development Department May 9, 2006.

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Presentation on theme: "RETROFITTING OLDER COMMERCIAL STRIPS Presentation to City of Edmonton Planning and Development Department May 9, 2006."— Presentation transcript:

1 RETROFITTING OLDER COMMERCIAL STRIPS Presentation to City of Edmonton Planning and Development Department May 9, 2006

2 SMART CHOICES PROGRAM 1.Neighbourhood Reinvestment 2.Residential Infill 3.Walkability 4.Redevelopment of Older Commercial (And Industrial) Lands The Revitalization of Older Neighbourhood Commercial Strips Achieves 4 Program Objectives:

3 HISTORICAL EVOLUTION OF COMMERCIAL STRIPS Developed along Streetcar Routes Former Main Entrances into City Superceded by Ring Roads and Bypasses New Trends in Retailing (Power Centres, Mega Strips)

4 TYPICAL PROBLEMS WITH OLDER COMMERCIAL STRIPS Oversupply of Commercial Space: High Vacancy Rates; Marginal Tenants Unattractive Buildings, Signs Discontinuity Pedestrian Safety Traffic Congestion; Poor Flow Due to Multiple Access Points Low Density / Inefficient Use of Land

5 REASONS FOR PERSISTENCE OF OLDER COMMERCIAL STRIPS Market and Land Use Inertia Retail’s Enduring Preference for Visibility and Access Opportunity for Independent Business Standard Practice of Applying Commercial Zoning to Arterials Change Requires Leadership and $$$

6 TRADITIONAL APPROACH TO STRIP REVITALIZATION 1.Streetscape Improvements 2.Mixed Use Zoning: Add apartments above Commercial

7 PROBLEMS WITH TRADITIONAL APPROACH TO REVITALIZATION Does not address underlying economic structural problems (lipstick on a corpse) Mixed use development is complicated

8 THE CHALLENGES OF MIXED USE DEVELOPMENT Residential Image Security Nuisance Impacts from Businesses Parking Conflicts (customers vs tenants) Higher Construction Costs (separate services, different structural modules) Financing Insurance Risks

9 GRAND BOULEVARD / MANSION APARTMENT NEIGHBOURHOOD CENTRE MODEL

10 Mansion Apartment Prototype

11 WHY MANSIONS? Small apartment buildings (8-20 units) attractive to small builders (less capitalization) attractive to small investors (easier to manage) allows incremental redevelopment (large land assembly not required) prestigious residential image neighbourly housing, not “ware-housing”

12 RETROFITTING PROCESS 1.Preliminary Assessment of Potential for Change 2.Market Analysis Study – how much retail can be supported? 3.Land Development Economics Study: retail vs. housing

13 RETROFITTING PROCESS 5.Land Use Plan: Restructuring commercial strip to evenly spaced neighbourhood centres with intervening residential segments 6.Building Prototypes / Designs 7.Streetscape Improvements 8.Incremental Redevelopment and Rezoning

14 ADVANTAGES OF NEW APPROACH For Business Accommodates the market’s preference for retail concentrations at major crossroads. Improves viability of remaining neighbourhood commercial Increased residential population = more disposable income within catchment area

15 For Property-Owners More profitable development option For Community Commercial blight removed More housing choice Improved neighbourhood image ADVANTAGES OF NEW APPROACH

16 For further information Michael Freedman Freedman, Tung & Bottomley 47 Kearney Street Suite 500 San Francisco, CA Tel. (415) Project: Highway 111, Cathedral City, CA


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