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Talk About Tulsa => Development & New Businesses => Topic started by: DowntownDan on June 11, 2016, 09:30:19 am



Title: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: DowntownDan on June 11, 2016, 09:30:19 am
The lot between the Coliseum and Lindsay House is now fenced off.  Will work begin soon on the office building or something else?


Title: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: cannon_fodder on June 13, 2016, 08:09:22 am
The lot between the Coliseum and Lindsay House is now fenced off.  Will work begin soon on the office building or something else?

I was unable to locate a building permit or announcement on those lots. Sometimes there is a lag between the permit and hitting the map.

The lot it is owned by One Small Step for Land, LLC.  The only land that LLC holds (under its own name) are the three lots between the Coliseum and Lindsey house. The registered agent for that entity is Frederic Dorwart. Obviously best known for representing Kaiser entities, but he is registered agent for 393 companies in Oklahoma, maybe a third of those Kaiser related (maybe). 


Title: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: BouldinDomer on June 13, 2016, 08:42:23 am
The last I heard that lot was going to be a new office for Jackson Technical. A couple of months ago the TW ran their application for a permit which listed it as "foundation only."



Title: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: cannon_fodder on June 13, 2016, 11:19:11 am
Thank you.

Quote
Jackson Technical, 611 S. Elgin Ave., new construction/foundation only, $2.5 million.
http://www.tulsaworld.com/business/fortherecord/for-the-record-commercial-building-permits-partnerships-bankruptcies/article_098c245a-d763-5514-9c50-b994e851c99a.html

The permit issuance is here:
https://www.cityoftulsa.org/media/455261/comm_feb_2016.pdf

Ted Reeds Architecture is handling the project. The permit language is "Foundation Only New Office Bldg For Jackson Tech." I couldn't find any renderings or anything else.

But more good news for downtown! When home grown companies decide to stay downtown and create buildings that fit then, then we grow vibrant downtown.



Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Moderator on June 22, 2016, 11:55:03 am
Project officially broke ground this morning.

• Tulsa World Article (http://www.tulsaworld.com/business/technology/jackson-technical-to-enlarge-downtown-footprint-with-new-headquarters/article_60167016-a9bb-54ec-b0df-ebe81a4ac5cd.html)

• TulsaNow Project Page (http://tulsanow.org/index.php/jackson-technical-headquarters/)

• Facebook Post (https://www.facebook.com/TulsaNow/posts/10153891104707762)


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Bamboo World on June 22, 2016, 12:10:32 pm
Project officially broke ground this morning.

• Tulsa World Article (http://www.tulsaworld.com/business/technology/jackson-technical-to-enlarge-downtown-footprint-with-new-headquarters/article_60167016-a9bb-54ec-b0df-ebe81a4ac5cd.html)

• TulsaNow Project Page (http://tulsanow.org/index.php/jackson-technical-headquarters/)

• Facebook Post (http://www.facebook.com/TulsaNow/posts/10153891104707762)

It's disappointing to see the building set back from the public sidewalk along Elgin, with a large curb cut (or two) for parking.  The parking would be better alley-side instead of street-side, in my opinion.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Bamboo World on June 22, 2016, 12:12:01 pm

• Facebook Post (http://www.facebook.com/TulsaNow/posts/10153891104707762)


A dead link when I tried it...


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Moderator on June 22, 2016, 12:17:36 pm
A dead link when I tried it...
Updated link above.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: cannon_fodder on June 22, 2016, 12:52:37 pm
Wow. It's really unusually to see a building setback like with parking in the front downtown. Wonder what the thinking was.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: BKDotCom on June 22, 2016, 12:56:00 pm
Wow. It's really unusually to see a building setback like with parking in the front downtown. Wonder what the thinking was.

The bigger question:  Why is it even allowed?


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Conan71 on June 22, 2016, 01:06:32 pm
Wow. It's really unusually to see a building setback like with parking in the front downtown. Wonder what the thinking was.

On the FB page, someone said the owner is from Broken Arrow, might have something to do with the thinking.  It really should be built up to the curb, especially in that area.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: erfalf on June 22, 2016, 01:13:07 pm
Not only that, but why do they allow single use buildings.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Bamboo World on June 22, 2016, 01:13:46 pm

On the FB page, someone said the owner is from Broken Arrow, might have something to do with the thinking.  It really should be built up to the curb, especially in that area.


No, it shouldn't be built up to the curb.  Closer to the property line and the sidewalk perhaps, but not within the public right of way to the curb.  ;)


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: dsjeffries on June 22, 2016, 01:45:20 pm
No, it shouldn't be built up to the curb.  Closer to the property line and the sidewalk perhaps, but not within the public right of way to the curb.  ;)

You knew that's what he meant...


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: swake on June 22, 2016, 01:48:16 pm
The bigger question:  Why is it even allowed?

It's not a bad looking building, just flip the parking to be behind the building and it would be fine.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Bamboo World on June 22, 2016, 01:56:10 pm

You knew that's what he meant...


I thought I knew by "curb" Conan probably meant something else, hence the teasing, winking smile.  

But, then again, a few days ago, when I read that "Malcolm is beyond anal about making sure Riverview is cleaner than it was before the [Tulsa Tough] race," I had no idea of what Conan meant by "cleaner" -- perhaps something else, such as "trashier."


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: cannon_fodder on June 22, 2016, 03:58:41 pm
I didn't mean to bash the building. It is a great addition to the neighborhood and keeping business downtown is obviously awesome. I was curious on what the thought process was.

And yes, I admit to viewing a lot of development in terms of missed opportunity. Guilty!


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: TheArtist on June 22, 2016, 08:50:10 pm
The bigger question:  Why is it even allowed?

Because hardly anyone fights to make it not allowed.  Gosh I have put my neck out on the line to try and get things changed and so often feel alone with nobody standing beside me, and big powerful people standing across from me giving me the evil eye lol.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Conan71 on June 23, 2016, 08:01:03 am
I thought I knew by "curb" Conan probably meant something else, hence the teasing, winking smile.  

But, then again, a few days ago, when I read that "Malcolm is beyond anal about making sure Riverview is cleaner than it was before the [Tulsa Tough] race," I had no idea of what Conan meant by "cleaner" -- perhaps something else, such as "trashier."

There’s usually the occasional cigarette butt, QT cup, or food wrapper along the curb in any neighborhood in any part of Tulsa.  I seriously doubt there would be anything like that left after the cleaning crew is done on Sunday evening, ergo “cleaner than it was before...”.  If there is still any trash left in Riverview more than a few hours after the event is over on Sunday, the event staff needs to be made aware of it.  The point I was trying to make is Malcolm understands SFTT has to do a really good job mitigating the mess in order to stay friendly with the HOA. You obviously are a literalist so I’ll keep that in mind with my comments in the future, Boo.  ;)

When I went up the hill to retrieve the water monsters at 13th & Jackson at 7pm, there was a very good effort going on at picking up trash.  It still  smelled like rotten hippie and stale beer but I’m sure that dissipated within a matter of days.  ;D


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: rdj on June 23, 2016, 08:31:16 am
On the FB page, someone said the owner is from Broken Arrow, might have something to do with the thinking.  It really should be built up to the curb, especially in that area.

I've known Tim about ten years but haven't visited with him in about a year.  Last I knew he and his wife lived in a townhome at Central Park at 8th & Peoria and have for seven plus years.  They had fully embraced the urban lifestyle as they spent many evenings dining and entertaining downtown.  They've been working on this project for quite sometime.  I too am surprised with the setback and can only think it is because of the lingering desire to have a set of parking spots right in front of the building.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: rebound on June 23, 2016, 09:21:28 am
It still  smelled like rotten hippie and stale beer but I’m sure that dissipated within a matter of days.  ;D

I'd don't know man, that rotten hippie smell can linger for a long time...    ;)

Seriously though,  I was out of town for TT, and got back on Monday.  I road CBH on Tuesday afternoon just for kicks, and I remember thinking "man, they did a good job cleaning this place up".  I'm sure there were small scraps of trash around, but it looked amazingly clean considering what went on Sunday.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: dsjeffries on June 23, 2016, 09:54:29 am
I've known Tim about ten years but haven't visited with him in about a year.  Last I knew he and his wife lived in a townhome at Central Park at 8th & Peoria and have for seven plus years.  They had fully embraced the urban lifestyle as they spent many evenings dining and entertaining downtown.  They've been working on this project for quite sometime.  I too am surprised with the setback and can only think it is because of the lingering desire to have a set of parking spots right in front of the building.

From Tulsa World: "Two years after Tim Jackson founded his IT services company from his home in Broken Arrow, he sought a niche in downtown Tulsa. He found one in 2001."

I guess you can take a person out of the suburbs but you can't take the suburbs out of the person. That suburban, car-oriented approach has found its way to this project. They could have easily brought this building to the sidewalk and placed parking behind the car. Instead, this company that "gets" downtown so well is building an asphalt monument to suburbia between two historic buildings that meet the sidewalk.

This sort of backwards thinking could have been prevented very simply if we hadn't bowed to pressure from uninformed members of the DCC and certain members of the development community who opposed allowing overlay districts in downtown. Instead, those uninformed folks successfully blocked a useful, widely used tool, based on fear (because they didn't understand it). Their fear mixed with hyperbole and power, and now we've got no protections in place for easily the most unique and valuable area of our city.

We could have created an overlay district for downtown that required basic things, like bringing buildings close to the sidewalk and putting parking behind.

For walkability, it's the little things that matter. It's the little things that send signals to your brain that you're in an area that feels comfortable to walk in, or not. That you're in a place designed for people, or not. That you're safe, or not. That you should keep walking, or not. That you should turn around. That you should cross the street because the other side feels better. It goes on and on.

Those details matter the most, and this one gets the basic stuff wrong, like where to put the building. Instead of meeting the street, it will sit behind cars. Folks walking down Elgin will have to cross two driveways* for this place, and we know that driveways that cross sidewalks are not safe for folks walking.

*In order to build this monument to cars, the two oldest remaining homes within downtown were demolished, but both driveways were kept.

Here's what the parking situation looks like around this property:
(http://djeffries.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/JacksonTechnicalParkingMap-e1466697224199.png)


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: carltonplace on June 23, 2016, 10:46:54 am
it is a nice looking building. Too bad you wont be able to see it.

(http://tulsanow.org/wp/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/JacksonTechnical-750x450.png)


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: TheArtist on June 23, 2016, 11:02:41 am
I think we should say something on their Facebook page.  https://www.facebook.com/JacksonTechnical/

I just walked over there to talk with Tim but he wasn't there and left my info with the secretary. 

I think public concerns about the project by the Sound Pony helped to persuade that developer to make some very good changes.  Perhaps this person just doesn't know about these things.

Is the Architectural firm downtown?  I wonder if they mentioned this issue?  Would be irresponsible for them not to do so.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: cannon_fodder on June 23, 2016, 12:41:19 pm
Honestly, it looks like we're talking about 7 parking spaces in exchange for losing the ability to see that cool new building as you drive down the road, and the ability for people in that building to see a street scape from their glass and balconies. I wouldn't attribute malice the "Tim" (I don't know, feels weird using his first name).  Guy probably doesn't pay attention to development issues like us nerds, and was more focused on the functionality of his building.

Doesn't mean someone can't point it out to him. Would be simply awesome if it was fronted.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Bamboo World on June 23, 2016, 05:10:35 pm

For walkability, it's the little things that matter. It's the little things that send signals to your brain that you're in an area that feels comfortable to walk in, or not. That you're in a place designed for people, or not. That you're safe, or not.


The 600 block of Elgin could be improved for pedestrians by eliminating the dedicated left turn lanes and by allowing curbside parking on both sides of the street.  With 56 feet between curbs, there's plenty of space for on-street parking.  (same for the the 500, 700, and 800 blocks, and part of the 900 block, too)


Folks walking down Elgin will have to cross two driveways* for this place, and we know that driveways that cross sidewalks are not safe for folks walking.

*In order to build this monument to cars, the two oldest remaining homes within downtown were demolished, but both driveways were kept.


Actually, those houses shared a single driveway, and it was only about nine feet wide where it crossed the public sidewalk.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: TimJ808 on June 24, 2016, 10:29:24 am
Greetings fellow Tulsans and downtowners.  While the majority of feedback we’ve received has been positive, I wanted to address your concerns on the site placement of our new building.
 
I assure you, we and our architecture team considered many options for the site placement… including up to the sidewalk.  The debates were thorough and never did reach a unanimous consensus. Ultimately, I was the one who made the final decision on the placement.  There were engineering, financial, and accessibility parameters, among other considerations…
 
The primary reason was SAFETY.  We’ve observed the traffic exiting the IDL highways on 7th street tends to be faster than normal as they adjust to downtown grid speeds.  These unsafe speeds extend through Elgin as they turn North from the exit in front of the property.  Our business is service oriented and our technicians are constantly visiting clients throughout the day.  If the extra visibility might prevent an accident, I am of course going to accommodate that.
 
Secondarily was to maximize on-property parking.  There is no street parking in front on Elgin, and all of the lots nearby are private parking reserved for their respective tenants.  The Lindsey House and Coliseum Apartments have just enough parking for their residents, the covered parking to the East is reserved for PSO employees, and so on.  We will have a small number of parking spots in front of the building, the majority on the north side facing the Lindsey House fence, and additional parking behind the building using the alley as room to back out.  Putting the building forward did not increase the number of spots we could accommodate behind the structure.
 
And lastly was function over form.  While we appreciate that many people like the look and feel of buildings developed all the way to the sidewalk… that preference is subjective.  We have daily FedEx and UPS shipments and accessibility was important to us.  The upside-down “U” shape that the three buildings will form feels inviting and comforting to me… a 3 story “hug”.  The sidewalk in front of the properties will not be impeded and will provide an aesthetically pleasing building which creates variety.
 
I am an advocate of downtown Tulsa and only wish the best for our urban core.  I setup shop downtown in 2001, and have lived in the Pearl District for over a decade.  I completely embrace a vibrant and pedestrian friendly environment.  But our employees and visitors have vehicles, and we must accommodate that as well.  If having a few parking spots up front encourages our Broken Arrow and other suburban friends to come visit and be comfortable doing it, I embrace that.
 
While I’m certain my response won’t change the minds of everyone that this is important to, I do hope you respect that this design is the best option for our significant investment in downtown Tulsa.
 
Sincerely,
 
Tim Jackson, President
Jackson Technical


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: TulsaGoldenHurriCAN on June 24, 2016, 11:18:18 am
Putting the building forward did not increase the number of spots we could accommodate behind the structure.
 

That sounds like a very key reason for the placement and sounds like you considered the concerns on here. It is a great looking building and I appreciate that you tried to make it more of an urban-oriented building and really a minimal amount of parking compared to a typical suburban building. Also appreciate when local business owners move and build downtown!

Thank you for the thorough response!


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Dspike on June 24, 2016, 12:09:12 pm
Tim, thanks for taking the time to provide a full explanation to a bunch of folks on the internet who have no say or authority over your decision. Appreciate you taking the time to engage. And THANK YOU for developing an otherwise undeveloped plot of land that is not right near the burgeoning parts of downtown. That's a risk for anyone to take. Thanks for taking it and by doing so, making downtown a bit better.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Bamboo World on June 24, 2016, 09:16:30 pm
On an internet opinion forum about development, everyone participating in the discussion has a say.  The property owner has the authority to decide what gets built and where on his land, but the discussion about the proposed development is an open forum.  That "said," I'm modifying my opinion a bit:

It's disappointing to see the proposed building set back from the public sidewalk along Elgin.

It's disappointing to see a large curb cut for access to only six parking spaces in front of the building.  I'm assuming there will be a second curb cut for access to a parking area along the north side of the property, perhaps about 18 spaces.  And I'm guessing there might be enough land for about 12 spaces along the alley, behind the building.

The on-site parking would be better alley-side instead of street-side.  However, now I know that the secondary reason for the building placement is the desire to maximize on-site parking.  The objective of maximizing on-site parking, especially when it's all single-level surface parking, is at odds with a number of urban design ideals, such as walkability, vibrancy, and pedestrian friendliness.

It's disappointing that the City of Tulsa allows so much of its existing downtown infrastructure to be under-utilized.  From curb to curb, Elgin's roadway is 56 feet wide.  There's an additional 12 feet on each side of the street for sidewalks, trees, etc.  A cycle track is planned for Elgin.  The Downtown Master Plan lists the future conversion of 7th Street to two-way traffic, west of Elgin.  With 56 feet between curbs, there is enough space for parking on both sides of Elgin, a protected bike lane, a moving traffic lane in each direction, and a center left-turn lane.

My suggestion would be to repaint Elgin with six lanes as detailed above, and to change the traffic signal at 7th Street to flashing red.  That would slow down the traffic on both 7th (which is often too fast and unsafe coming from the IDL as described by TimJ808) and on Elgin, also.

By allowing parallel on-street parking on the 600 block of Elgin, I'm estimating there could be five four spaces along the west side of the street, and about seven along the east side.  That's taking into account:
a) the existing curb cuts, and
b) my best guess about the locations and the widths of the two proposed curb cuts for Jackson Technical, and
c) an existing unused driveway on the west side of the street.


With a single curb cut for Jackson Technical instead of two, then I estimate nine or ten potential parking spaces on the east side of the street, instead of seven.  Anyway, that's a potential of at least twelve eleven on-street parking spaces for the 600 block of Elgin.

Also, in my quick estimation, by eliminating three on-site parking spots in front of the proposed building and shifting it about nine or ten feet closer to Elgin, one parking space plus about 800 square feet of additional landscaped area could be gained behind the structure.  That would be a net loss of two on-site parking spaces, however.

Driveways crossing sidewalks are impediments to pedestrian safety.  The fewer the driveways, the better.  The narrower the driveways are, the better.  Curbside parking and street trees increase pedestrian safety, too.

Edit:  The driveway on the west side of Elgin I thought was not used is actually an active access to a raised dock.  I saw it in use today.      


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Conan71 on June 24, 2016, 10:24:00 pm

Driveways crossing sidewalks are impediments to pedestrian safety.  The fewer the driveways, the better.  The narrower the driveways are, the better.  Curbside parking and street trees increase pedestrian safety, too.      

I’ll double down on my statement that I’m disappointed the building is not oriented much closer to the street due to aesthetics but let’s be honest here:  Curb cuts for seven parking spaces will not equate to a pedestrian hazard unless that pedestrian is walking along with their phone in their face.  That is not a lot of anticipated parking turn over.  Curb cuts along any high traffic area like St. John Hospital or any number of suburban shopping areas are definitely a pedestrian hazard in comparison.

I’m trying to figure out how those curb cuts are a hazard but re-opening Frankfurt from 2nd to 1st through Santa Fe Square would be more pedestrian-friendly?  I’m not trying to bust your balls but it seems like creating a street through Santa Fe Square is far more dangerous than access for a seven or eight car parking lot is between two buildings on Elgin.

The objections over curb cuts for pedestrians are the same ones I have with “protected" bike lanes, though I think the concern for bike lanes with turn ins for side streets and commercial sites far outweighs those from walking as you are going much faster on a bike.

Granted the only bike lanes I draw on from personal experience are those in Albuquerque through some high traffic areas and they scare the hell out of me.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Bamboo World on June 25, 2016, 12:39:04 pm

I’ll double down on my statement that I’m disappointed the building is not oriented much closer to the street due to aesthetics but let’s be honest here:  Curb cuts for seven parking spaces will not equate to a pedestrian hazard unless that pedestrian is walking along with their phone in their face.


I should have been more specific.  The curb cuts themselves aren't the impediments to pedestrians on the public sidewalk.  The driveways crossing the sidewalk are.  There are two driveways currently, but they're relatively narrow.  The proposed driveway shown in the rendering appears to be about twice as wide as one of the existing driveways, where it crosses the sidewalk.

The curb cuts along a street reduce walkability and pedestrian friendliness.  They break a barrier (the curb) between vehicular traffic on the street and pedestrians on the sidewalk.  I think the City of Tulsa should allow curbside parking on Elgin because cars parked on the street increase walkability and protection for pedestrians.  Curbside parking tends to slow traffic down.  Curbside parking allows a choice for people who might want to stay in the neighborhood for awhile and visit more than one place.  For example, curbside parking on Elgin would allow someone to go to Jackson Technical for awhile and then do something else in the vicinity.  Curbside parking tends to be more efficient of land and pavement because the access lane to on-street parking is an adjacent traffic lane, which is already part of the street.  With most on-site parking, access lanes must be created in addition to the parking spaces themselves, which adds considerably to the amount of paved surface area.  The most efficient parking spaces on the Jackson Technical property will be those behind the building, adjacent to the alley.

The existing curb cuts appear to be about 18 feet wide each.  The proposed curb cut shown in the rendering appears to be about 40 feet wide, and that extra 22 feet of width is the approximate length of a on-street parallel parking space.  The proposed curb cut appears to be for access to six parking spaces (judging by the cars and pavement stripes shown in the rendering).  That proposed curb cut eliminates two potential parking spaces on Elgin which would take about 350 square feet of asphalt that's already there.  The proposed curb cut would allow access to six on-site parking spaces.  The area of the driveway pavement would be about 200 square feet, and that includes potential planting space for street trees, which provide another protection for pedestrians and greatly increase walkability.  The area of pavement for the six parking spaces plus the center access lane would be roughly 1500 square feet.  So, for a net gain of four parking spots, that's an additional 1700 square feet of pavement, or 425 square feet per space, which is less than half as efficient as the on-street spaces would be.


That is not a lot of anticipated parking turn over.


It depends on who uses those six spaces, and how long they park there.

According to TimJ808, "[Jackson Technical's] business is service oriented and our technicians are constantly visiting clients throughout the day."  I don't know what that means.  The technicians are going in and out of the office throughout the day to visit clients off-site?  Clients are driving to the office to visit with technicians on-site throughout the day?  A combination of both?

But supposing you're right, Conan, that there will be little turnover of those six spaces.  It will take 1700 square feet of pavement, the loss of potential street trees, and the loss of two potential on-street parking spots to create a net gain of four spaces on-site, which won't be used often, if you're correct.  To me, it's disappointing that the City does not utilize Elgin more efficiently and calm down the traffic speeds coming from the IDL.  To me, it's sad that a developer feels as though he needs to set back his building to provide safety from traffic speeding by his property and spend money on driveways and off-street parking when the City could relatively cheaply provide some of the parking on Elgin.


I’m trying to figure out how those curb cuts are a hazard but re-opening Frankfurt from 2nd to 1st through Santa Fe Square would be more pedestrian-friendly?  I’m not trying to bust your balls but it seems like creating a street through Santa Fe Square is far more dangerous than access for a seven or eight car parking lot is between two buildings on Elgin.


I hope I've explained how wider/closely spaces curb cuts and driveways lessen walkability and pedestrian friendliness.

As I understand it, Frankfort is proposed as a pedestrian-only street from 1st to 2nd through Santa Fe Square.  I think it would be better if the design included the potential for one lane of vehicular traffic in each direction with parking along both sides.  There could be gates or bollards at both ends to close or open the street to vehicular traffic.

In case of an emergency, street festival, bike race, marathon, or whatever in the vicinity ... having an alternate vehicular path would be beneficial.  If that one block of Frankfort could survive as a pedestrian-only street, then the gates could remain closed.  But having the vehicular flexibility built into the design is a better idea, for many reasons, which I won't re-hash here and now (but will be happy to do so some other time).

Back to our disappointment about the auto-centric, suburban-style Jackson Technical site layout:

The biggest disappointment to me isn't the setback itself, so I'll disagree with you about that and agree with TimJ808 on his point about subjectivity.  He likes the setback from Elgin and feels more comfortable with it.  

My primary disappointment is the curb cut, driveway, and parking lot between the building and Elgin.  I think it's a waste of money and precious land.  The parking lot and access to it will lessen walkability and pedestrian friendliness.  But it's TimJ808's money and land, not mine.

A second disappointment is with the City of Tulsa.  Elgin is wide enough for on-street parking.  It would be relatively inexpensive to re-stripe the pavement.  Vehicular traffic should be calmed and speed limits enforced, perhaps lowered.  The alley should be paved from 6th to 7th, and the curb should be cut at 6th to allow access to/from the north end of the alley.  And we (the citizens of Tulsa) should bear the cost to have the alley paved and Elgin re-striped.  I'd much rather see Improve Our Tulsa funds going toward repairs to that alley and Elgin Avenue than acquiring more land to widen Denver Avenue.    


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: cannon_fodder on June 27, 2016, 10:33:37 am
Greetings fellow Tulsans and downtowners...
 
While I’m certain my response won’t change the minds of everyone that this is important to, I do hope you respect that this design is the best option for our significant investment in downtown Tulsa.
 
Sincerely,
 
Tim Jackson, President
Jackson Technical

Thank you sir. I appreciate you taking the time to explain your reasoning to us.

As most people on here will readily admit, downtown is far better off with your investment than without it. For development nerds, critiquing a development is like looking at a work of art... we may acknowledge that Monet created a masterpiece, but the color pallet should be warmer! It seems you have taken our critique for what it is, a review seeking the most perfect urban development. That can minimize pragmatic considerations for the business owner.

The reason people (including recently commissioned walk-able city guru Jeff Speck) advocate for limited setbacks is because setbacks make a space less walk-able. With parking in front, people are told right away that "this building is for cars." People generally don't walk past parking lots as the message to drive has been sent and because, simply, it isn't a pleasant walk. Cherry Street vs. Harvard between 21st and 36th.  With one building setback, it does create an interesting setback and a miniature (albeit paved) courtyard. But when more buildings do the same thing, that effect is lost and the benefits of minimized setbacks are also lost.

While minimized setbacks certainly are a matter of subjective opinion, that opinion is so very widespread it is nearly ubiquitous. I don't think I've ever heard anyone drive down Boston, Cherry Street, Brookside, downtown Jenks, or any other urban corridor and say "this would look so much better if there was parking lots in front of these buildings." In fact, when you add the parking in the front what might have been an interesting area loses its appeal (note where the Brookside dies off).

Nonetheless, if the layout showed that you did not have the desired parking if you fronted the building - pragmatism wins the day. I get that. I'm not asking for a reconsideration, but do you think it would have changed your formula if there was on street parking on Elgin? Having recently been involved in the debate yourself, you are a great resource for this discussion! What would incentivise private enterprise to want to conform to urban/walkable development norms?

Thanks again for investing in downtown!


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: natedog784 on June 27, 2016, 10:34:34 am
Greetings fellow Tulsans and downtowners.  While the majority of feedback we’ve received has been positive, I wanted to address your concerns on the site placement of our new building.
 
I assure you, we and our architecture team considered many options for the site placement… including up to the sidewalk.  The debates were thorough and never did reach a unanimous consensus. Ultimately, I was the one who made the final decision on the placement.  There were engineering, financial, and accessibility parameters, among other considerations…
 
The primary reason was SAFETY.  We’ve observed the traffic exiting the IDL highways on 7th street tends to be faster than normal as they adjust to downtown grid speeds.  These unsafe speeds extend through Elgin as they turn North from the exit in front of the property.  Our business is service oriented and our technicians are constantly visiting clients throughout the day.  If the extra visibility might prevent an accident, I am of course going to accommodate that.
 
Secondarily was to maximize on-property parking.  There is no street parking in front on Elgin, and all of the lots nearby are private parking reserved for their respective tenants.  The Lindsey House and Coliseum Apartments have just enough parking for their residents, the covered parking to the East is reserved for PSO employees, and so on.  We will have a small number of parking spots in front of the building, the majority on the north side facing the Lindsey House fence, and additional parking behind the building using the alley as room to back out.  Putting the building forward did not increase the number of spots we could accommodate behind the structure.
 
And lastly was function over form.  While we appreciate that many people like the look and feel of buildings developed all the way to the sidewalk… that preference is subjective.  We have daily FedEx and UPS shipments and accessibility was important to us.  The upside-down “U” shape that the three buildings will form feels inviting and comforting to me… a 3 story “hug”.  The sidewalk in front of the properties will not be impeded and will provide an aesthetically pleasing building which creates variety.
 
I am an advocate of downtown Tulsa and only wish the best for our urban core.  I setup shop downtown in 2001, and have lived in the Pearl District for over a decade.  I completely embrace a vibrant and pedestrian friendly environment.  But our employees and visitors have vehicles, and we must accommodate that as well.  If having a few parking spots up front encourages our Broken Arrow and other suburban friends to come visit and be comfortable doing it, I embrace that.
 
While I’m certain my response won’t change the minds of everyone that this is important to, I do hope you respect that this design is the best option for our significant investment in downtown Tulsa.
 
Sincerely,
 
Tim Jackson, President
Jackson Technical


While you are investing in downtown Tulsa, you are investing in a suburban style manner. The development you are constructing belongs more at 71st and Memorial then the 600 block of South Elgin. Personally, I would prefer you built out there rather than ruining a prime piece of real estate downtown. It's a shame that such a significant amount of money is being spent on a structure that is so poorly placed.  


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: TheArtist on June 27, 2016, 02:55:56 pm
  One thing to note, this developments placement choice will impact those around it.  Including the property owners across the street.  

We are all still hoping for and pushing for a great retail corridor to develop somewhere in downtown. We are not allowed to have the tools in our downtown that other cities have that help create those types of spaces. (though we do have rules in the rest of the city that help create good suburban/car oriented retail corridors and suburban style spaces, there is not one single square mile or block even where there are rules to create good urban spaces)  There are many cities that have rules that go so far as to say no office and living on the ground floor in their retail/transit corridors.  We can't even have any that say "just put it up to the sidewalk".

But suffice it to say that with this development going in there like it is this area will now not be conducive to becoming a retail corridor.  And that is fine, not every street can be or needs to be.

The point I always make is that we are chopping up more and more areas with construction that will not help us create a really strong, competitive retail area downtown.

Even this block where this development is now would have had difficulties if what went in was more urban.  The best place for a shop is somewhere where there are more shops/restaurants, including right across from each other.  (Next time your in Brookside for instance, look at those areas that have the strongest retail/restaurant areas and those that are not as strong retail/restaurant wise and note the difference. There is one little strip mall that has some parking in front near the heart of Brookside and it always struggles to find tenants when there is a vacancy for it does not fit in with the pedestrian nature of whats just north of it and is thus not as attractive as the areas where there are shops/restaurants right next to each other and across from each other)

Now, anyone who wants to put in a restaurant or store on the other side of the street from this for instance, will probably not want to in the first place for they will be looking out over a parking lot, but will also be at a competitive disadvantage downtown with someone who puts their store in a place where there are shops or restaurants opposite them.  (And remember, we are competing against other cities. Why make our urban retail shops weaker and have to work harder than those in our competitive cities?)

If I am looking for a place to put a store.  Where would I do better downtown, if I put it in a place across from another store or restaurant which has hundreds of different people going in and out of each day? Or across from an apartment or business in which only a few of the same people go in and out of it, a few times each day?

I want my store to be across from another store or restaurant so I will have enough pedestrian traffic to compete.  And near other stores and restaurants next to me to help make it a destination area for shopping/dining.

This stretch of street with this development as it is will be at a double disadvantage now if anyone wants to put a restaurant/retail establishment there.  Or on a block to either side for now this will establish this area as being a pedestrian "gap" downtown. It will not only be "not conducive to having retail/restaurants there, it will also be less appealing as a pedestrian corridor.

And again, thats fine. Not every street can be a pedestrian/transit friendly corridor or the more active "pedestrian lively" retail/restaurant corridor.  Even the best cities have more quiet, slower streets.

We have decided to not organize and create urban retail areas (though again we lay out rules to make auto centric things work well outside of downtown so not sure why we can't do that for pedestrians & transit downtown) but leave it up to individual property owners to, of their own good will, do so, or not do so, for our city.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: SXSW on June 27, 2016, 10:52:09 pm
Sorry but a parking lot in front of a building downtown is not acceptable if you want good urban design, especially on a commercial corridor like Elgin.  I am just glad this isn't north of 6th. 


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: MyDogHunts on June 28, 2016, 12:02:16 am
Everybody, I just feel like the character, Guy, the tag-along in the movie, Galaxy Quest, when he says something like, "I'm just so happy to be along for the ride."

https://youtu.be/6mXWXwxPtXg

Tulsa will be great.  I believe Tulsa will be rebuilt.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: DowntownDan on June 28, 2016, 09:28:17 am
This is a good example of why an overlay downtown is needed.  You'd think that downtown would be a place that wouldn't need setback requirements, but its pretty clear that for areas that are going to be infilled, it's kind of a blank slate, and not everyone agrees with all buildings to the sidewalk.  The building looks great, though, and it's their right to build anything that the zoning code allows.  I just really wish it fit better with the downtown environment we're trying to develop in the East Village.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: LandArchPoke on June 29, 2016, 08:11:42 am
This is a good example of why an overlay downtown is needed.  You'd think that downtown would be a place that wouldn't need setback requirements, but its pretty clear that for areas that are going to be infilled, it's kind of a blank slate, and not everyone agrees with all buildings to the sidewalk.  The building looks great, though, and it's their right to build anything that the zoning code allows.  I just really wish it fit better with the downtown environment we're trying to develop in the East Village.

Greetings fellow Tulsans and downtowners.  While the majority of feedback we’ve received has been positive, I wanted to address your concerns on the site placement of our new building.
 
I assure you, we and our architecture team considered many options for the site placement… including up to the sidewalk.  The debates were thorough and never did reach a unanimous consensus. Ultimately, I was the one who made the final decision on the placement.  There were engineering, financial, and accessibility parameters, among other considerations…
 
The primary reason was SAFETY.  We’ve observed the traffic exiting the IDL highways on 7th street tends to be faster than normal as they adjust to downtown grid speeds.  These unsafe speeds extend through Elgin as they turn North from the exit in front of the property.  Our business is service oriented and our technicians are constantly visiting clients throughout the day.  If the extra visibility might prevent an accident, I am of course going to accommodate that.
 
Secondarily was to maximize on-property parking.  There is no street parking in front on Elgin, and all of the lots nearby are private parking reserved for their respective tenants.  The Lindsey House and Coliseum Apartments have just enough parking for their residents, the covered parking to the East is reserved for PSO employees, and so on.  We will have a small number of parking spots in front of the building, the majority on the north side facing the Lindsey House fence, and additional parking behind the building using the alley as room to back out.  Putting the building forward did not increase the number of spots we could accommodate behind the structure.
 
And lastly was function over form.  While we appreciate that many people like the look and feel of buildings developed all the way to the sidewalk… that preference is subjective.  We have daily FedEx and UPS shipments and accessibility was important to us.  The upside-down “U” shape that the three buildings will form feels inviting and comforting to me… a 3 story “hug”.  The sidewalk in front of the properties will not be impeded and will provide an aesthetically pleasing building which creates variety.
 
I am an advocate of downtown Tulsa and only wish the best for our urban core.  I setup shop downtown in 2001, and have lived in the Pearl District for over a decade.  I completely embrace a vibrant and pedestrian friendly environment.  But our employees and visitors have vehicles, and we must accommodate that as well.  If having a few parking spots up front encourages our Broken Arrow and other suburban friends to come visit and be comfortable doing it, I embrace that.
 
While I’m certain my response won’t change the minds of everyone that this is important to, I do hope you respect that this design is the best option for our significant investment in downtown Tulsa.
 
Sincerely,
 
Tim Jackson, President
Jackson Technical


Exactly - it's time for a downtown overlay. I wish there was a way for the city to do this without the majority of owners agreeing to it. There's a select few downtown who think it would be "to restrictive".

The more time we don't have one, the more chances we have to sh***y development like this popping up in downtown. I'm sorry Tim - this development is nothing but a POS. Sure, the building looks nice, but the design of the building along does not contribute to making a great urban environment. This suburban set back is not acceptable and frankly I would rather see you take your $3 million investment and pack it up to somewhere else in town. We don't need it downtown.

The excuses he used for his reasoning to have the set back are utter BS. People drive too fast off the 7th street exit and continue to do so on Elgin? Give me a break!!! I take this exit all the time.

The design of this development is a spit in the face to everyone else who has invested billions into real estate development downtown and have done it in property urban design. So no, your $3 million investment isn't that significant that you should feel so entitled to build this suburban POS along Elgin. I bet this gave you maybe 5-6 more parking spots... hope it's worth it to you to embed a permanent scare inside our CBD. Here a token thought, since there's no on street parking why not ask the city to do a road diet along Elgin and repaint it to add on street parking for you and the other building around that area? But instead, the lazy way was taken and you have chosen a design that is contradictory to an urban setting that you claim to love so much. 


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: PonderInc on June 29, 2016, 09:30:27 am
It's hard to fathom right now, because so much of downtown has been decimated by surface parking lots, but this is and should be an urban, walkable environment.  We build our cities one parcel at a time, which is why it matters that this building should not be fronted by surface parking.  Remember when Blockbuster insisted on a front parking lot on Brookside?  That lot is still there, it's still a mistake, and it signifies the end of where people walk along Peoria.

I would highly recommend that the folks at Jackson Technical, and anyone who wants to understand how to create lively, walkable places, watch this 20-minute video that explains pedestrian behavior in an urban environment.  These concepts are elemental--this is simply how people on foot respond to their surroundings.  You can see it in action in every city in the world.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VsrqBHEOT0k (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VsrqBHEOT0k)

People love downtown Tulsa because of its architecture, the diversity of entertainment and dining options, and because it's urban and unique--unlike all the car-oriented suburban development that surrounds it.  We simply must build on that and maximize what is special about downtown. Failing to understand this means shooting ourselves in the foot and then wondering why we never win the race.

The DCC is going to spend $70k to have Jeff Speck do a walkability study and make recommendations for downtown.  Guess what will be included in that recommendation: In walkable places, you have to bring the destination up to the sidewalk, and have lots of windows so people can walk by and see inside.  This development got the windows right, but the parking lot is an impediment that will negatively impact every other property near it. 

Again, it's hard to imagine right now, because that area is so empty, but remember that those wasted parking lots are just future development sites.  If we screw up how infill occurs in these areas, it will delay downtown viability by 50 years or more, while we wait for the buildings to be torn down and replaced with something appropriate for an urban environment. Nobody wants to make that mistake. Tulsa simply doesn't have that much time before we begin competing with other markets across the country.  We are so far behind already, it's laughable.

So, yes, this does impact everyone, and everyone has the right to speak out about this. 

I could go on about how dedicated surface parking actively punishes people who want to walk and use transit, dilutes property taxes, and reduces our ability to pay for public services, but that's for another time.  Just know that downtown is our treasure chest, with the ability to outperform (and support) every other area in the city and the region--but only IF we get the urban design right.  Otherwise, it's just another inefficient land-wasting area that can't generate enough tax revenues to pay for the public services and infrastructure required to support it.



Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Bamboo World on June 29, 2016, 09:50:26 am
Oh, Ponder ... dear, sweet, Ponder ... I could just give you a big HUG right now, out on a public sidewalk, in full view of God and everyone!

(And I mean the type of hug that's a close, full embrace ... not to be confused with TimJ808's type of distant "hug" -- from 200 feet away, across the expanse of two parking lots.)

Hugs...   :-*


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: erfalf on June 29, 2016, 11:59:15 am
Ponder:

As much as that area seems bleak right now, how long did it take for the Brady to do more or less a 180. It can happen in a heartbeat really. And this building if completed, will likely exists as it is for the next 50 to 75 years. This will absolutely be on that our next generation will wonder what they were thinking.

Two things that I am shocked are allowed to occur downtown.

1. Buildings with setbacks
2. Single use buildings



Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: SXSW on June 29, 2016, 10:27:18 pm
Hopefully this helps lead to the creation of an overlay zoning district downtown (and then later expanded to adjacent areas).  I could see mayor-elect Bynum gettin behind this as well as Blake Ewing.  The message should be that investment downtown is welcome but needs to be done the right way.

I guess we can hope that if they expand they'll build out their parking lot.   ::)


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: DowntownDan on June 30, 2016, 07:36:54 am
Hopefully this helps lead to the creation of an overlay zoning district downtown (and then later expanded to adjacent areas).  I could see mayor-elect Bynum gettin behind this as well as Blake Ewing.  The message should be that investment downtown is welcome but needs to be done the right way.

I guess we can hope that if they expand they'll build out their parking lot.   ::)

I think Ewing has pushed really hard for it but the property owners and developers are strongly pushing back (big surprise).  I don't know what the solution is if the requisite amount of property owners won't agree.  Change the law or push the planning commission and city hall to reject proposals that don't fit what an overlay would entail.  I don't think either is very likely to be honest.  We just have to hope that people developing the surrounding area do it organically without needing a law or planning commission to require them to do things right.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Bamboo World on June 30, 2016, 08:24:10 am

Change the law or push the planning commission and city hall to reject proposals that don't fit what an overlay would entail.


Push the Planning Commission?  How so?

The Jackson Technical architect/project manager is a planning commissioner.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: swake on June 30, 2016, 08:31:14 am
Push the Planning Commission?  How so?

The Jackson Technical architect/project manager is a planning commissioner.

Seriously?

That is way too frustrating.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: dsjeffries on June 30, 2016, 09:40:29 am
Seriously?

That is way too frustrating.

Yes, but I don't think it matters - in Tim's post, he said the decision was not unanimous and that in the end, Tim made the call to put the building where it is. My guess is that Ted, who really understands all these concepts, tried to persuade Jackson Technical to move the building up to the sidewalk, and lost.

In Tim's post, he called bringing the building up to the sidewalk a subjective decision. Thing is, it's not.
It is objectively true that setbacks in urban settings reduce walkability.
It is objectively true that driveways increase danger to all users of sidewalks.
It is objectively true that parking lots devalue the land and buildings around them.
It is objectively true that form and placement affect activity.
It is objectively true that shared parking is an option available to all property owners in Tulsa.
It is objectively true that Jackson Technical could make a shared parking agreement with the owners of any of the dozens of parking lots that abut and surround this property.
It is objectively true that this business has succeeded in downtown for years without its own dedicated surface parking lot.
It is objectively true that this building is located within a 5 minute walk of more than 1,700 parking spaces.
It is objectively true that the same number of parking spaces would be available if parking was placed behind the new building.
It is objectively true that there are tens of thousands of available parking spaces downtown.
It is objectively true that downtown is different than the suburbs.
It is objectively true that Jackson Technical has the right to do whatever they want on this property.
But it is also objectively true that this building is a bad fit, does not contribute in any way to the (developing) urban fabric, will hurt the (developing) neighborhood more than it helps, will reduce walkability, and will serve as an example of what not to do. It very well may be the thing that finally gets downtown the overlay it needs and deserves.

Whether Jackson Technical believes it or not, there's more science to walkable urbanism than just warm fuzzy feelings and pie-in-the-sky ideals. And honestly, it's not that hard to get it right.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: BKDotCom on June 30, 2016, 09:53:00 am
It is objectively true that...

It is objectively true that all the things you mentioned are true for downtown as a whole.    But what about from a Jackson Technical centered perspective?  How does walkability help his business?

Why should I get my child vaccinated if everyone else gets their child vaccinated?

Quote
It is objectively true that this building is located within a 5 minute walk of more than 1,700 parking spaces.

How many of those spaces are available for an hour or less?   vs all-day / require a permit?



Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Bamboo World on June 30, 2016, 11:16:25 am

It is objectively true that this building is located within a 5 minute walk of more than 1,700 parking spaces.



How many of those spaces are available for an hour or less?   vs all-day / require a permit?


The answer, of course, depends on how far one can walk within 5 minutes.  With curb cuts and driveways every 50 feet*, trying to amble along public sidewalks (subject to vehicular traffic crossing them) can be perilous and especially slow for even the most able-bodied, mixed-multi-modal-traffic-savvy, and long-legged pedestrians... a precise number of parking spaces is difficult to determine.

The exact quantity of parking spots available is, therefore, subjective.

*A spacing of 50 feet was used merely as an broad brush illustrative example.  Driveway width, as well as whether driveway traffic across a sidewalk is free to flow in both directions or only one; time of day; weather conditions; pavement cross slopes; street closings; special events; construction areas; artificial and natural lighting conditions; the possibility of barbershop quartets or demonstrators blocking free passage of normally free and open pedestrian paths; the purpose and nature of any such demonstrations, protests, or quasi-organized congregations; the quantity and various locations of true brick and brick-like concrete unit pavers missing from crosswalks**; the presence or absence of street trees, along with species, season of the year, the sex of all dioecious specimens; along with many, MANY other variables must be factored into a true, objective calculation.

**This particular variable (because it is so variable at any given moment within a typical 5 minute period in downtown Tulsa) makes a true, objective calculation of parking spaces nearly impossible.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: dsjeffries on June 30, 2016, 11:33:40 am
The answer, of course, depends on how far one can walk within 5 minutes.  With curb cuts and driveways every 50 feet*, trying to amble along public sidewalks (subject to vehicular traffic crossing them) can be perilous and especially slow for even the most able-bodied, mixed-multi-modal-traffic-savvy, and long-legged pedestrians... a precise number of parking spaces is difficult to determine.

The exact quantity of parking spots available is, therefore, subjective.

**This particular variable (because it is so variable at any given moment within a typical 5 minute period in downtown Tulsa) makes a true, objective calculation of parking spaces nearly impossible.

A 5-minute walk is a standard measurement, defined generally as 1/4 mile based on average human walking speeds of around 3 miles per hour. 1,700 parking spaces isn't subjective. You can count the spaces.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: dsjeffries on June 30, 2016, 11:51:39 am
It is objectively true that all the things you mentioned are true for downtown as a whole.    But what about from a Jackson Technical centered perspective?  How does walkability help his business?

Bringing the building to the sidewalk helps the business by increasing the value of its largest assets (the building and the lot it sits on) (walkability increases property values). Bringing the building to the sidewalk provides safer access to their business. Bringing the building to the sidewalk would make the building and the business more visible from all users of sidewalks and the street. Placing the building next the sidewalk also means that when a building is constructed across the street, there's a better chance of this building being protected from the heat of the western sun. Since this is a mostly glass building, bringing it to the sidewalk could save the business thousands of dollars a year in utility charges, especially if it contains servers and other computer components that require consistent temperature control.

Quote
How many of those spaces are available for an hour or less?   vs all-day / require a permit?

As mentioned above, businesses have the ability to work out shared parking agreements, and lots of companies already do this. Even then, moving the building to street would not reduce the number of parking spaces they could build. They would just be behind the building instead of in front.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: PonderInc on June 30, 2016, 11:51:54 am
I think Ewing has pushed really hard for it but the property owners and developers are strongly pushing back (big surprise).  I don't know what the solution is if the requisite amount of property owners won't agree.  Change the law or push the planning commission and city hall to reject proposals that don't fit what an overlay would entail.  I don't think either is very likely to be honest.  We just have to hope that people developing the surrounding area do it organically without needing a law or planning commission to require them to do things right.
What's interesting about the downtown overlay debate (during the zoning code update) was that the main opponent to it was Chris Bumgarner.  In typical fashion, he bullied a lot of people to vote his way, without actually understanding what it is that he was opposing.  (Mostly, he was fighting for his "god given property rights" to do whatever dumbass thing he wants to do.  Hey, great job with those "aparkments" over by the west garage!  Got any buyers yet?) By his habitual method of alternating misinformation with intimidation, he was able to get some folks to oppose the overlay, including the DCC.  

Most of the TMAPC (aside from Ted) are so inadequately educated / equipped to consider actual urban planning issues, they just went along with the tactics of Bumgarner and Joe Westervelt. So it was the blind leading the blind. The debate was hilarious as some of the most outspoken commissioners failed to grasp that an overlay can only be initiated by the property owners or the city council.  (This after multiple meetings with staff that clearly explained how this works.) And they continued to fear that someone would tell them what color paint to use on their shutters.  So sad.

Oh, one of Bumgarner's other arguments was that property owners downtown don't need an overlay: they will do everything right because it's in their best interests.  Yeah.  How's that working out so far? Some folks just need a handful of simple guidelines so they don't make ridiculous mistakes. Downtown definitely needs the option of an urban overlay.  And after the DCC works with Jeff Speck, they will agree.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Bamboo World on June 30, 2016, 07:30:06 pm

Downtown definitely needs the option of an urban overlay.  And after the DCC works with Jeff Speck, they will agree.


Perhaps the DCC with agree with Jeff Speck's recommendations, perhaps...

But for many years, some Tulsans have been pushing for the same things Jeff Speck advocates.  I think you mentioned in another post that we could save the City $70,000  -- and gave a short list of suggestions.  But if Jeff Speck or whoever else comes up with the same basic pointers and techniques, will the City Council ever put them into action?  We'll see.

Councilor Bynumm [sic] might actually put some suggestions into action.  We'll see.  I'm somewhat hopeful of the promise of his leadership.

But when he leaves the Council, what happens with the direction of the Council itself?  The Council amends the zoning code text and map, not the Mayor's Office, not the DCC, not the TMAPC.

I admire your stamina, PonderInc.  But I'm being worn down by the anti-urban, car-centric attitudes.  I remember sitting next to you during a City Council meeting, listening to Tulsans talk at length about some of the same things that Jeff Speck writes about, talks about, and recommends.  Then, I remember the councilors talking at length, also:  tales of harlots and babies being chopped in half; Councilor Bynumm's [sic] mocking remarks about his own personal appearance; questions about conflicts of interest, business and personal connections, ethics, and the obligation of recusal; etc.  And then I remember the vote.

We'll see.

And I agree with you -- that it is hard to fathom an urban, walkable environment along Elgin Avenue right now.  But at one time, Elgin was lined with trees, houses, apartments, and commercial buildings.  In the middle of Elgin, streetcars carried passengers from the downtown core to the fairgrounds.  There were pedestrians and cyclists, for sure.  There might have been some decorative acorn lights, too.

Elgin had all those things in the past, and more.  Elgin can have those things again, and more (sans the acorn lights, I hope).  But will it?  And if so, will we be alive to see it happen?

Currently, it is difficult to fathom an urban environment on South Elgin, but as erfalf pointed out, we can walk a few blocks (or drive, if we must  >:( ) and see the relatively fast changes in the Mathew B. Reconciliation Way Arts District.  South Elgin can become an urban, walkable environment.

With the new mayor, I'm confident that there will be some progress.  We'll see.

And finally, although I've been disappointed many times with Mayor Bartlet [sic], appointing Ted Reeds to the Planning Commission is one of best decisions that our current mayor made (or that any mayor could ever make).

Hugs...        




Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: TheArtist on June 30, 2016, 08:28:32 pm
I will try and bring this development up at the DCC as yet another negative example.  I don't think I can do much more than that but say "Look, here is another one!"


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Bamboo World on June 30, 2016, 08:32:07 pm

I will try and bring this development up at the DCC as yet another negative example.  I don't think I can do much more than that but say "Look, here is another one!"
 

Be ready for an evil eye or two.  Or maybe some hugs.  Who knows?


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: MyDogHunts on June 30, 2016, 10:04:09 pm
Perhaps the DCC with agree with Jeff Speck's recommendations, perhaps...

But for many years, some Tulsans have been pushing for the same things Jeff Speck advocates.  I think you mentioned in another post that we could save the City $70,000  -- and gave a short list of suggestions.  But if Jeff Speck or whoever else comes up with the same basic pointers and techniques, will the City Council ever put them into action?  We'll see.

Councilor Bynumm [sic] might actually put some suggestions into action.  We'll see.  I'm somewhat hopeful of the promise of his leadership.

But when he leaves the Council, what happens with the direction of the Council itself?  The Council amends the zoning code text and map, not the Mayor's Office, not the DCC, not the TMAPC.

I admire your stamina, PonderInc.  But I'm being worn down by the anti-urban, car-centric attitudes.  I remember sitting next to you during a City Council meeting, listening to Tulsans talk at length about some of the same things that Jeff Speck writes about, talks about, and recommends.  Then, I remember the councilors talking at length, also:  tales of harlots and babies being chopped in half; Councilor Bynumm's [sic] mocking remarks about his own personal appearance; questions about conflicts of interest, business and personal connections, ethics, and the obligation of recusal; etc.  And then I remember the vote.

We'll see.

And I agree with you -- that it is hard to fathom an urban, walkable environment along Elgin Avenue right now.  But at one time, Elgin was lined with trees, houses, apartments, and commercial buildings.  In the middle of Elgin, streetcars carried passengers from the downtown core to the fairgrounds.  There were pedestrians and cyclists, for sure.  There might have been some decorative acorn lights, too.

Elgin had all those things in the past, and more.  Elgin can have those things again, and more (sans the acorn lights, I hope).  But will it?  And if so, will we be alive to see it happen?

Currently, it is difficult to fathom an urban environment on South Elgin, but as erfalf pointed out, we can walk a few blocks (or drive, if we must  >:( ) and see the relatively fast changes in the Mathew B. Reconciliation Way Arts District.  South Elgin can become an urban, walkable environment.

With the new mayor, I'm confident that there will be some progress.  We'll see.

And finally, although I've been disappointed many times with Mayor Bartlet [sic], appointing Ted Reeds to the Planning Commission is one of best decisions that our current mayor made (or that any mayor could ever make).

Hugs...        




I took a post graduate Urban Planning class in Stillwater taught by a wonderful Civil Engineering professor.  The thing was, he was a civil engineering prof. & Urban Planning does not fit a pure civil engineering approach; this was in the 80's... I was 30.  If I had a better experience I might have stayed in school and nursed that.

I love downtowns.  I've enjoyed living in the French Quarter more than once; Portland, OR, at the Roosevelt; Houston... sort of, at the Galleria (early 90's); Pittsburgh, near the old stadium; Boston where I worked, but I lived in Wellesley.

Thing is, Urban Renewal chopped down the natural, old growth neighborhood south of downtown.  I came back and saw these parking lots, saw the Phoenix of Tulsa rising in the Arts District, Brady, everywhere... and I imagined the area along Elgin & West becoming a mixed use neighborhood.

That's where I want to live, dine, be entertained.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: PonderInc on July 29, 2016, 12:44:00 pm
It's hard to tell from this pic, but the building is definitely going to be set back from the street.  There's a lot of room in front of the big dig.

(http://www.accidentalurbanist.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/image4-1024x768.jpeg)


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: johrasephoenix on July 29, 2016, 12:58:54 pm
I always just want to point to the Trader Joe's on Brookside.  They are a grocery store that lives and dies by automobile traffic with thousands of people accessing their store by car every week.

The parking lot is behind the building.  It is a great place to walk in front of.  It is also super easy to park - it makes no difference to most people what side of the building the parking lot is on.  Trader Joe's is doing fine and I'm sure making money hand over fist from schmucks like me. 

Same thing with the Fairfield Hotel in the Brady...lots of automobile traffic with the lot tucked behind the building.  Not a problem. 

There are easy fixes that make a building car friendly AND people friendly, especially in a place like Tulsa with cheap land.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: johrasephoenix on July 29, 2016, 01:02:59 pm
Also not to keep piling on the hate BUT the architect for this project is the architect for Pizza Hut Wing Street, Wendy's, and FedEx Kinkos.  That should say something.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Conan71 on July 29, 2016, 01:03:42 pm
I originally thought there was not good access to the back of that lot, but it does appear there is an alleyway extending north off 7th.  Now if they were concerned about the speed of people firing off the IDL onto 7th and that’s why they put the parking on Elgin, that might be one thing.  There is a restricted right turn onto Frankfurt on 7th as well at least during peak business hours (i.e. forbidden).


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Bamboo World on July 29, 2016, 03:54:52 pm


Also not to keep piling on the hate BUT the architect for this project is the architect for Pizza Hut Wing Street, Wendy's, and FedEx Kinkos.  That should say something.
 

I'm coming to the defense of Ted Reeds and The McIntosh Group.  Ted is a very good architect, and he cares about urban design principles.  Ted has worked hard to preserve some of Tulsa's historic architecture, such as the façade of the City Market building a few blocks south on Elgin at 10th Street.  Most of that beautiful terra cotta probably would be broken and/or buried in a landfill, if not for Ted's efforts to save the Art Deco façade and to work it into Home Depot's development plan.

The McIntosh Group (TMG) has many clients, including those you mentioned, but that doesn't mean that TMG designs every building for all of those various companies.  For example, when QT was slammed with an enormous civil rights consent decree a few years ago, TMG helped QT update stores and sites to be more accessible and to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act Design Guidelines.  TMG worked with QT to remove barriers (resulting from the designs of other architects).

The placement of the Jackson Technical HQ building on its site was the client's choice, as explained by TimJ808 on this forum.  Simply because TMG has Wendy's and Pizza Hut as clients doesn't make TMG or any of their other clients/projects hate-worthy. 
     


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Bamboo World on July 29, 2016, 05:09:46 pm


I originally thought there was not good access to the back of that lot, but it does appear there is an alleyway extending north off 7th.  Now if they were concerned about the speed of people firing off the IDL onto 7th and that’s why they put the parking on Elgin, that might be one thing.  There is a restricted right turn onto Frankfurt on 7th as well at least during peak business hours (i.e. forbidden).


TimJ808 explained the reasons why "they" arranged the parking with some spaces in the front of the building -- that's the way he (the property owner and paying client) wanted his company's parking lot to be laid out for the convenience of his clients and his employees.

According to TimJ808, there are to be some parking spaces behind the building, with access from the alley.  I haven't seen the Jackson Technical site plan, but I've designed parking lots.  Having a row of parking spaces along an alley is very, very efficient use of space, in terms of getting the most parking on the least amount of land.  I think the designers have crammed as many spaces as possible behind the building, along the alley.

By shifting the building about 9 feet closer to Elgin (or the approximate width of a parking space), it would be very easy to fit an extra space on the alley side.  But in doing so, 3 spaces would be lost on the front side of the building. 

In other words, shift the building 9 feet closer to Elgin and lose 3 parking spaces in the front of the building (and with a net loss of 2 spaces on the site).

Shift the building 18 feet closer to Elgin and gain 2 spaces behind, but lose 6 spaces in front (for a net loss of 4 spaces on the site).

TimJ808's goal was to maximize on-site parking.  Also, he stated that he prefers the setback from Elgin.  It makes him feel comfortable, with the buildings giving him a hug.
   


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: cannon_fodder on August 01, 2016, 08:23:19 am
Just because HE wanted HIS building to be built THIS way doesn't make THIS placement any BETTER. Sure, he gets a hug from his neighbors...enjoying the fact that they are fronted to the street. Almost like the aesthetic feel of having buildings in an urban area fronted to the street is preferable?

Few are arguing he shouldn't be able to do it, the code is clear that he can. Most are arguing that the building would better fit in the neighborhood, better contribute to walk ability, and help tie the streetscape together better if it was fronted like nearly every other urban area in the world. Look no further than Cherry Street or Brookside, when you start putting in setbacks you stop walking. Look no further than Vault, when a building is setback it isn't as visible as part of the streetscape.

This one building isn't the end of the world. Its a neat design and I'm glad they are staying downtown filing in an empty lot (and one knockdown). But that doesn't mean we have to cheer it without a critique. On the whole, a positive in my book. But also a missed opportunity. It's getting a "B" when damn it, you should of had that "A".


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Bamboo World on August 01, 2016, 04:54:55 pm

I'm not cheering it.  On the whole, it's a negative in my book.  In terms of urban design and walkability, it gets an "F" from me.



Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: PonderInc on August 01, 2016, 05:15:38 pm
Look no further than Cherry Street or Brookside, when you start putting in setbacks you stop walking. Look no further than Vault, when a building is setback it isn't as visible as part of the streetscape.

So true.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: dbacksfan 2.0 on August 14, 2016, 12:59:38 am
Didn't The Vault use an existing building that was a bank drive through that had a conference/meeting room on the upper deck called the Oyahoma Room? I agree that the setback is not ideal, but they were able to re-purpose a building that has some significance to downtown, and is a mid-century modern design, or a Googie Architecture design.

So the setback there was a result of using an existing structure, and as much as Artist loves Deco, I'm of fan of that building's design era. Your mileage may vary, just my opinion.  ;) 


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: davideinstein on August 14, 2016, 08:12:00 am
The bigger question:  Why is it even allowed?

Bad policy at city hall. Can't blame the developer, they adjust accordingly.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: hello on August 17, 2017, 09:42:08 am
I just want to say how awful the new construction looks. Completely ruins the look of that block by not being set to the street.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: SXSW on August 17, 2017, 01:29:12 pm
I just want to say how awful the new construction looks. Completely ruins the look of that block by not being set to the street.

I like the building design but agree this absolutely should've been right up to the Elgin sidewalk. 



Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: Townsend on August 18, 2017, 11:29:43 am
I just want to say how awful the new construction looks. Completely ruins the look of that block by not being set to the street.

Eh...it's downtown Tulsa.  To me, anything with life is better than these F'ing parking lots.


Title: Re: Jackson Technical HQ
Post by: TulsaGoldenHurriCAN on August 18, 2017, 02:04:04 pm
Eh...it's downtown Tulsa.  To me, anything with life is better than these F'ing parking lots.

Sad but true when you consider that over half of downtown remains parking or empty lots. However, this particular location acts as a chokehold for southeastern development in the Blue Dome/East Village area. The highway exit ramp would've otherwise been the stopper so about like losing a block of potential urban/walkable area.

Still, it would be nice to see a bit faster progress on all of those almost ~$1 billion in potential downtown projects, especially in NE downtown. The View looks held up, only the hotel is being built in the Santa Fe square and who knows what or when anything will come of the Nordam redevelopment.

A lot of developers seemed to pull back or slow down with the oil crash. Oil is less than 10% of the economy so while that is still a big deal, it seems like investors should keep going due to the rest of the economy doing so well. I have started to see listings "for rent" in the heart of downtown which used to rarely ever happen (they all had long wait lists).

Maybe they are scared of a few vacancies or having to lower prices a bit and don't want to make it harder for themselves. I understand that but also think the overall rise in rents and demand to live in urban areas will rise faster, especially if the new developments get built. This is part of the reason we need affordable condos downtown: to ease the  financial burden on the developers: rather than a massive mortgage or upfront payment, they sell the condos and get paid back much earlier. The Nordam spot would be a perfect place to put some good efficient condos in! Many would pay $100k-$250k for a nice spot they could own downtown. Many do that in places like Little Rock, Des Moines and other mid-sized cities already.