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Apr 13

The Pointes at Cedar Project Updates - December 2021

Posted to What's the Pointe? on April 13, 2022 at 8:11 AM by Haley Foster

The Pointes at Cedar Project Update: December 2021 Recap

December 2021 was a busy month for the City of Monticello’s Pointes at Cedar project. The City created a new committee, called the Compass Committee to help ‘pointe’ the development in the right direction. The goal of the committee is to keep the project centered around the community of Monticello, incorporating a vision that’s focused on what the public wants and needs. Making The Pointes at Cedar a destination within the city.

Zoning Work Group

The Zoning Work Group is charged with helping develop a zoning ordinance specific to The Pointes at Cedar. Zoning provides the standards for the types of uses and site design that will occur in the project area. At the most recent meeting, the Zoning Work Group used example photos to identify specific characteristics for building materials, landscaping, signage, and design for The Pointes. This guidance will help the City’s planning consultant begin drafting ordinance language for discussion.

Compass Committee

The Compass Committee is helping create and guide the public spaces at the center of The Pointes. The Compass Committee met for the first time on December 15, 2021. After introductions and a presentation by the project team, committee members were led through an imagining exercise to think about what should be included to make The Pointes at Cedar a welcoming place for the entire community. Recurring themes included:

  • Diversity of place - include physical spaces that promote a mix of uses ranging from quiet and contemplative spaces for yoga, meditation and sitting quietly on a bench; to a public stage that allows for local performances of music, theatre, and art.The Pointes at Cedar Newsflash
  • All ages venue - focus on promoting multi-generational use of this public gathering place in a way that encourages people of different ages to meet and enjoy this place together. Ideas to accomplish this focused on programing and events that bring in a mix of cultures and generations, including a food truck event, an annual pond hockey tournament that includes different ages playing at the same time, outdoor films, and pairing activities together such as coffee and a book club or a “paint and sip” event.
  • Access and opportunity – it’s important to provide resources and amenities to assure all are welcome and can fully utilize The Pointes at Cedar.

The committee will meet next on February 16, 2022.

Board & Commission Updates

The City Council approved a request for a 200-unit multi-family residential project known as Monticello Lakes, proposed in the southeast corner of The Pointes at Cedar. Construction of the project is anticipated to begin in early 2022. There was no other formal City board or commission activity on The Pointes for the month of December.

General Project Updates

City staff and project consultants from WSB and NAC meet each month to work through a variety of planning and design topics related to the next phase of work on The Pointes. WSB is consultant for the grading, park and open space, and landscaping; NAC is the consultant for The Pointes Small Area Plan and The Pointes Zoning Ordinance. The joint meetings allow for communication on the work of the Compass Committee and Zoning Work Group. This month, the staff and consultant team discussed the December 15 Compass Committee meeting, utility relocation coordination, and opportunities for additional public engagement.

Apr 13

The Pointes at Cedar Project Updates - January 2022

Posted to What's the Pointe? on April 13, 2022 at 8:11 AM by Haley Foster

The Pointes at Cedar Project Update: January 2022 Recap 

The Pointes at Cedar Project kicked off the new year with a lot of brainstorming, teamwork, and discussion. Our teams discussed activities, design elements, and the physical building characteristics of The Pointes. Now that our committees have a more developed concept, we’re ready to bring those ideas to you!

Stay Up-to-Date and Share Your Ideas!

We want to hear your ideas for how The Pointes’ public spaces will look and feel. City representatives will be at the MonticellGLOW Parade on Saturday, Feb. 26, and at the Indoor Farmers Market on Saturday, March 12 to hear more from the community on activities and design elements for the park spaces within the project. The Pointes at Cedar project page will also have opportunities to share your ideas and offer feedback on the project as it progresses – stay tuned for those updates!

Zoning Work GroupThe Pointes Drawing

The Zoning Work Group is charged with supporting the development of a zoning ordinance specific to The Pointes at Cedar. Zoning provides the standards for the types of uses and site design that will occur in the project area.

The Work Group met Tuesday, Dec. 28 and Tuesday, Jan. 4 to identify specific characteristics for building materials, landscaping, signage, and design for the private development areas at The Pointes. The characteristics outlined are reflective of the three biomes in The Pointes – north, central, and south. The group stressed that the characteristics should be a guide and provide development flexibility in the final design. The Work Group also expressed thoughts on the review process for projects proposed for The Pointes.

The group met again on February 7 at 5 p.m. at the Monticello Community Center. The Zoning Ordinance Work Group includes a City Council, Planning Commission, and PARC representative. All of the board representatives are also Monticello residents. A property owner from The Pointes area is also a member of the group. An upcoming joint Planning Commission and City Council workshop is planned to review the work to-date.

The Pointes at Cedar NewsflashCompass Committee 

The Compass Committee is helping create and guide the public spaces at The Pointes. The Committee is made up of a cross-section of Monticello community members.

The Compass Committee has not met since the time of the December Pointes’ update. They will meet next on February 16 at 5 p.m. at the Monticello Community Center. The next Compass Committee meeting will be focused on prioritizing the committee’s ideas for places, activities, and programs that will make The Pointes a welcoming place for the entire community.

Jan 28

Downtown: Block 52 Redevelopment Concept

Posted to Community & Economic Development on January 28, 2022 at 12:46 PM by Haley Foster

City Council, Boards, and Commissions Come Together for Block 52 Redevelopment Concept

Blog PicThere’s something special about Downtown Monticello. A place defined by a mix of riverfront, local businesses, people, and opportunities. As part of an ongoing commitment to downtown revitalization, the City of Monticello recently held a special meeting about a potential project that seeks to capture all these downtown elements.

On January 10, members of the City Council, Planning Commission, Economic Development Authority (EDA), and Parks, Arts, and Recreation Commission (PARC) came together with area business owners and city staff to view a concept plan for a proposed multi-use development. The concept was presented by Deephaven Development, LLC, Buchholz Construction, and RHET Architecture. Along with an initial glimpse of the concept, the meeting was an opportunity to provide feedback to the developers as they refine their plans.

What is Block 52?Block 52 Map

A reference to the legal description of the land, Block 52 is the city block at the northwest corner of the Broadway and Pine Street (TH25) intersection. It’s located in the heart of downtown and one of the most visible spots in the city, with over 37,000 vehicles traveling through the intersection each day. 

With these advantages, the block was identified in the City’s Downtown Plan as an opportunity for revitalization. The vision was for a signature development project, bringing additional energy and vitality to the area.

Why did the EDA buy property on the block?

Redevelopment is consistently more complex and expensive than developing vacant land. Cities can encourage redevelopment by helping assemble various properties into a single land tract. This allows developers to efficiently work with a single property owner and take advantage of local financing tools.

To help redevelop Block 52 as a value to the city, the EDA purchased land from willing sellers in the area. Some property owners have opted to remain on the block, adding their energy to the downtown. The EDA was ultimately successful in bringing together what was needed for a feasible project, about 83% of the block.

Is the City working with a private developer?

Yes! Both Block 52 redevelopment and broader Downtown revitalization is anchored by a commitment to public-private partnerships. As the EDA neared completion of property acquisition, they began searching for a developer interested in bringing a project to life. In 2021 the EDA approved a Preliminary Development Agreement (PDA) with Deephaven Development, LLC. The PDA allows both the City and the developer to move through initial project development stages before a more binding development agreement is established. 

Block 52 RenderingProposed Development

At the January 10 meeting, the developer team unveiled their initial concept for a mixed-use development incorporating both residential and commercial spaces. The proposed concept is a five story, L-shaped building along Broadway and Pine streets. The structure steps down to coordinate with the existing historical buildings downtown. While presenting at the meeting, Architect Rhet Fiskness of RHET Architecture highlighted efforts to complement Monticello’s historical roots with building materials that coordinate with existing downtown structures: a combination of red brick, blond brick, and metal accents.

According to Mark Buchholz of Buchholz Construction, the concept has apartments on levels two through four. On the first floor, the concept shows office space on Broadway, retail stores on Pine Street, a restaurant with a patio overlooking West Bridge Park as well as public plaza on the corner of Broadway and Pine Street. Their concept includes underground parking spaces as well as surface parking spaces.

“We want to create something with vibrancy that will be a place where you want to go and hang out,” said Buchholz.

City Feedback for the Concept

As those in attendance reviewed the concept photos and presentation detail, many provided positive feedback to the developers. 

Council members Jim Davidson and Charlotte Gabler appreciated the aesthetic and building materials incorporated in the design. Mayor Lloyd Hilgart agreed, giving the developers an “A plus” on their project. Council member Sam Murdoff also liked what he saw, but indicated he was interested in seeing even more. “I’m willing to help you make the project bigger,” said Murdoff.

Architect Rhet Fiskness joked he would love the opportunity to go bigger but noted this is just the first step of many. “Cities are designed by architecture,” said Fiskness. “The goal of the Block 52 project is to help define downtown Monticello while respecting the neighboring buildings that exist,” he added. Future development could then incorporate this definition into their plans.

Members of the EDA, Planning Commission, and PARC also noted their positive impression of the project, particularly how the proposed concept clearly reflected the intention and vision of the redevelopment effort. 

Building Momentum for a Long-Term Project

After many years of planning for a signature project, there is a lot of anticipation for visible progress. City staff noted the project is still in the early stages, but they’re happy with the feedback from the meeting and the benefits a project like this would bring to the City of Monticello. 

City Administrator Rachel Leonard emphasized, “This is the kind of project that takes several years to accomplish. We’re moving forward, which is exciting, but there’s a lot more to do before people will be able to eat at an outdoor patio overlooking West Bridge Park and the river.” 

Until then, the City of Monticello will continue to support a vibrant downtown with a commitment to this project and the entire downtown.Block 52 Message