Roundhouse Apts

Please limit discussion in this area to local and state politics.
fennel
Forum God/Goddess
Posts: 3512
Joined: Thu Sep 28, 2006 4:24 pm
Location: Inside the Green Zone, Madison

Roundhouse Apts

Postby fennel » Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:27 pm

City planners against Roundhouse apartment expansion

Add an addition while tenants are living there? WTF?

green union terrace chair
Forum God/Goddess
Posts: 3023
Joined: Wed Jul 20, 2005 3:33 pm
Location: Memorial Union
Contact:

Re: Roundhouse Apts

Postby green union terrace chair » Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:48 pm

fennel wrote:City planners against Roundhouse apartment expansion

Add an addition while tenants are living there? WTF?

I don't understand your outrage ... this is no different than building another building next to an existing building, except these might be connected. It's what they're doing right now on S. Henry and W. Main (Capitol West condo tower and the new apartment tower will have connected underground parking).

fennel
Forum God/Goddess
Posts: 3512
Joined: Thu Sep 28, 2006 4:24 pm
Location: Inside the Green Zone, Madison

Re: Roundhouse Apts

Postby fennel » Tue Jun 10, 2014 1:21 pm

No outrage; it just seems a silly and a less than half-assed way to build. And to expect to collect rent at the same time? They should just sell the property and move on.

green union terrace chair
Forum God/Goddess
Posts: 3023
Joined: Wed Jul 20, 2005 3:33 pm
Location: Memorial Union
Contact:

Re: Roundhouse Apts

Postby green union terrace chair » Tue Jun 10, 2014 1:36 pm

fennel wrote:No outrage; it just seems a silly and a less than half-assed way to build. And to expect to collect rent at the same time? They should just sell the property and move on.

Yes, they would collect rent from the tenants living in the existing building that is unaffected, other than bordering a construction site.

Do you think they're proposing to move people into a building while it is still being constructed? That is not the case.

Ninja
Forum God/Goddess
Posts: 1643
Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2011 12:22 pm

Re: Roundhouse Apts

Postby Ninja » Tue Jun 10, 2014 6:56 pm

green union terrace chair wrote:
fennel wrote:No outrage; it just seems a silly and a less than half-assed way to build. And to expect to collect rent at the same time? They should just sell the property and move on.

Yes, they would collect rent from the tenants living in the existing building that is unaffected, other than bordering a construction site.

Do you think they're proposing to move people into a building while it is still being constructed? That is not the case.


The city is trying to enforce a code of aesthetics that doesn't actually exist anywhere in law, and they'll probably get away with it (though to be fair, that building is ugly as hell).

I agree with your reasoning and conclusion that this really shouldn't affect existing tennants, but I'm always a little skeptical of student housing because it's such a unique market, especially in Madison. According to the article they're planning to rent these new units in August 2015. I would imagine that they're not going to wait until late July 2015 to start signing leases.

In fact, I bet they start leasing those units at the same time as they start leasing existing units (October 2014, assuming they still use Madison's uniform downtown lease calendar to push kids into renting far in advance like they did back in my day), and if the construction isn't completed by the time kids come to town for the 2015 school year, those kids are screwed. Not totally screwed - I'm sure they'd be put up in hotels and compensated somehow, but I've been in that position and it's a shitty way to start a school year (and I was a terrible student, I can only imagine how disruptive it would be for a kid who actually went to classes).

snoqueen
Forum God/Goddess
Posts: 12973
Joined: Fri Feb 14, 2003 11:42 pm

Re: Roundhouse Apts

Postby snoqueen » Tue Jun 10, 2014 7:04 pm

I was kinda interested in someone's recent proposal to save the Highlander, the ugly concrete tower on Gilman where recently there was a dispute over Steve Brown's plan to build something else. (If someone else can find the story I'll be appreciative.) The idea was the Highlander was a structurally sound, liveable building and could be remodeled to be less ugly, with a far more environmentally-sound net result than demolition and total replacement. I think this idea is worth exploring. Not every student wants or needs to live in a palace with pools and gyms and saunas, after all. Some students just want basic, decent housing and, having commitments on campus or at work, are rarely home anyway.

But the Roundhouse? That thing is irretrievable. I remember when it was built -- nobody could believe their eyes. What could possibly cause a developer to think putting a round building on a square lot was the best possible use of space?

The apartments in the Roundhouse aren't all that awful, compared to some of what's nearby. Every apartment has a decent-sized balcony, if I remember right. That's an amenity of sorts.

Maybe it should be preserved as-is just so nobody ever again builds student housing shaped like a silo. Adding on to it is gilding the lily.

fennel
Forum God/Goddess
Posts: 3512
Joined: Thu Sep 28, 2006 4:24 pm
Location: Inside the Green Zone, Madison

Re: Roundhouse Apts

Postby fennel » Tue Jun 10, 2014 7:41 pm

When I first saw the Roundhouse, it reminded me of the early 70s, cheaply built hotels I'd seen along parts of the Costa Del Sol, in Spain. Cylindrical buildings were a resort theme then, apparently. Perhaps the form was more organic from a distance, but from up-close it seemed destined to irrevocable decay from the outset.

If it weren't for U.S. building codes, I guess the the Roundhouse would have been in a landfill long before now.

Perhaps Christo could be commissioned by the Frautschis to wrap the thing — permanently.

Ninja
Forum God/Goddess
Posts: 1643
Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2011 12:22 pm

Re: Roundhouse Apts

Postby Ninja » Tue Jun 10, 2014 8:06 pm

Delivering pizzas in that building in the 90s was a disaster from what I remember. The buzzer was sketchy, the halls were dark, the apartment numbering was weird, and there was no stair access without a key.

I remember making a delivery to the 2nd floor once and having to take the elevator back down to the 1st, which disrupted the elevator ride of a very drunk, very important princess who gave me an ear full about taking the elevator for just one floor. She would have had a point if I hadn't been carrying a very obvious, big, red, insulated pizza bag. So I made her aware of that fact once we got off the elevator, and told her that she better never order a pizza from us or we'd know and I'd be called in to deliver it upside down.

I still think of that exchange every time I have to take an elevator for just a floor or two.

Bwis53
Forum God/Goddess
Posts: 6744
Joined: Tue Dec 31, 2002 9:39 pm
Location: Bay Creek
Contact:

Re: Roundhouse Apts

Postby Bwis53 » Tue Jun 10, 2014 10:06 pm

Sno, here ya go.

http://www.thedailypage.com/isthmus/art ... icle=42889

I've enjoyed a number of old and newer small apartments.

narcoleptish
Forum God/Goddess
Posts: 3793
Joined: Mon Mar 14, 2005 1:35 am

Re: Roundhouse Apts

Postby narcoleptish » Wed Jun 11, 2014 6:13 pm

Ninja wrote:In fact, I bet they start leasing those units at the same time as they start leasing existing units (October 2014, assuming they still use Madison's uniform downtown lease calendar to push kids into renting far in advance like they did back in my day), and if the construction isn't completed by the time kids come to town for the 2015 school year, those kids are screwed.



You have to shoot for that construction deadline with student housing to avoid sitting on an empty building when loan payments are due. If everything goes super smooth and the building wraps up a month early, the bank doesn't care that there's no one living there, they want their full payment.

Ideally a developer wants a project to go right on schedule, both early and late completion dates cost them more money. A developers loan "sits" in the bank and they draw out money as it's needed as the project moves along. The monthly payment is based on how much has been drawn up till that point, so a project that runs ahead of schedule results in bigger monthly payments than the developer was planning on. Then if it were to finish a month early, they owe a full payment for a month with no rental income. It can be quite substantial.

Now if you're someone like the Gorman Company who specializes in gathering government subsidies and tax credits, you get that money up front allowing you to possibly collect interest on it until it's needed. A much safer endeavor.

And if you're really slick you can work a deal to develop apartments in a Catholic seminary while allowing the diocese' offices to remain, thus retaining tax exempt status for the building.

This was the latest news I read about the Holy Name project, but now I can't find the article. Doesn't matter, it was a threadjack anyway.


Return to “Local Politics & Government”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests