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Frost Tower - Jetta Operating to Build Downtown Office Building

Downtown Office New Construction Bennett Benner Partnership Frost Tower 640 Taylor

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#201 John T Roberts

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Posted 15 September 2015 - 12:25 PM

I have information from a good authority that the tower was always going to be 25 stories. There was a point where it looked like the name tenant was going to require an additional floor of parking. The extra floor of parking has been since deemed unnecessary.


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#202 John T Roberts

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Posted 15 September 2015 - 01:42 PM

Another important note about this project is that it includes downtown's first major shared parking agreement. It reserves 150 spaces that are used for the office in daytime to be used by a compatible user at night.



#203 NSFW

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Posted 16 September 2015 - 05:45 PM

Construction will begin by years end according to Star Telegram story. 

 

http://www.star-tele...le35264775.html


Adrian


#204 John T Roberts

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Posted 16 September 2015 - 07:21 PM

My informed source contradicts some of the information in the Star-Telegram article.  I guess we will have to wait until the building is under construction to see where the floor is actually removed.



#205 renamerusk

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Posted 22 September 2015 - 09:47 PM

From the FWBP   ---- now leasing!

 

http://www.fortworth...6a710e701c.html



#206 Austin55

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Posted 22 September 2015 - 11:55 PM

Love those new renderings to, it will look amazing leaving Sundance Plaza coming around the corner of the Westbrook.



#207 Jeriat

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Posted 09 October 2015 - 09:19 PM

From what we've discussed on this forum, anyone see anything... wrong with this pic?
(the word "wrong" is subjective...)
 

cam-05-exterior-view-1-021-hi-frost-logo


7fwPZnE.png

 

8643298391_d47584a085_b.jpg


#208 John T Roberts

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Posted 09 October 2015 - 10:04 PM

Yes, I do.  The city is currently working on an ordinance outlawing signs and logos above the 10th floor on downtown buildings.  It appears that Frost Bank will be the main tenant in the building.  This does not surprise me, since I was tipped off that an announcement was going to be made soon about the anchor tenant for the building.  However, I did not know it was going to be Frost.  They will be taking the primary lease space on the corner of Taylor and 5th, as well as some of the upper floors. 

 

Anyway, below is a link to the Fort Worth Business article on the signing of the anchor. 

http://www.fortworth...b5d00e7447.html



#209 renamerusk

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Posted 09 October 2015 - 11:15 PM

Yes, I do.  The city is currently working on an ordinance outlawing signs and logos above the 10th floor on downtown buildings....

 

What is the rationale for a ban above the 10th Floor?



#210 John T Roberts

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Posted 10 October 2015 - 07:17 AM

They don't want the signs at the tops of the buildings.  The rationale is that it keeps the skyline classier if the skyline is not dominated by signs and logos.  I also think that they believe that if the signs are below the 10th floor, they still can be seen from a distance, yet can be hidden from distant skyline views by other buildings.



#211 jefffwd

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Posted 10 October 2015 - 09:06 AM

Yes, Las Colinas has similar rules but Dallas seems to welcome all the logos they can get (chase, at&t, txu etc.)  Having been in commercial real estate for many years I understand the need to attract corporate tenants but IMO it does look classier when your downtown  doesn't look like Times Square or Vegas...  That said, I have no problem with the Frost logo.  It is discreet and doesn't scream "Look at me!"  Also, does anyone else feel like the Omni in FW looks so much better then the one in Dallas that is very "Vegas-esque". 



#212 Dismuke

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Posted 10 October 2015 - 09:27 PM

It may be more "classy" to some - but in my view the lack of illuminated signs at night makes downtown look sterile.  

 

Back in the day when downtowns really mattered and even small city downtowns were vibrant and impressive rooftop signs were commonplace and, on the street level, every night was a light show.  Downtowns should be commercialized - the entire point of downtown has always been commerce.  Commerce is not a dirty word - it is what makes our wonderful standard of living and all of the technological comforts we all too often take for granted possible.  It is something that ought to be celebrated - and what better, more festive way to do so than with lights?  And what better way to draw attention to and highlight all of the activity that goes on in downtown than through signs?

 

Personally, I would like to see more rooftop signage downtown - and I think it would be especially cool if the old neon signs which once graced the rooftops of the Texas and Blackstone hotels could be recreated.  Both hotels continue to honor and emphasize their past so the signs wouldn't really detract from their modern day branding - if anything it will enhance their visibility.

 

As to jeffwd's comment about the Omni in Dallas - I completely agree.  That thing at night looks gaudy and cheesy.  That's a shame because someone who actually possessed a degree of good taste could have made it look very nice. As with anything, building lighting and signage can be done in a tasteful manner or in a gaudy manner.  (Plus  I think the Dallas Omni's close proximity to dangerous and tricky interchanges that are extremely challenging to navigate for those from out of town (which, in turn, make it dangerous for even those who are very familiar with them) makes it a visual distraction.  I have wondered if it the lighting has ever contributed to any accidents.)


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#213 John T Roberts

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Posted 10 October 2015 - 09:43 PM

Dismuke, rooftop signs are already outlawed by city ordinances.  I do agree with you somewhat in that they do add a spark of life to the skyline at night.  What may be a compromise would be to not allow corporate signs and logos on the upper floors of buildings, yet require the new buildings to have some form of decorative illumination. 



#214 Dismuke

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Posted 11 October 2015 - 04:21 PM

But I don't think building owners should be required to do anything one way or another along these lines.   What it basically amounts to is a committee of people using the city's police power to enforce their particular aesthetic views - i.e., their particular opinions as to what does and does not constitute good taste.  It wouldn't even matter if the entire committee's opinions on such matters happened to be identical to mine.  The very notion of a governmental body dictating aesthetics is offensive - and on a level far more fundamental and important than any possible disagreement over what does or does not constitute good design. 

 

City officials have a valid basis to be concerned that buildings not present any sort of safety hazard to the public.  But the appearance of buildings and whether or not they should have signage - that is entirely a matter of taste and opinion and, in a free society, the government does not get to pick sides on such debates.  If there are certain cultural or aesthetic trends that some segment of the population does not like - well, that's tough.  There are all sorts of buildings out there that I think are thoroughly disgusting - as long as my tax dollars are not paying for them, I don't get to have any say so on whether they get built or not.

 

And are we forgetting why our area is even experiencing the economic growth and relative prosperity we have enjoyed in recent years while the economies in much of the rest of the country have either contracted or stagnated?   Much of it comes from businesses and people fleeing other parts of the country such as the Northeast and California that have been hobbled by a regional mindset that seeks to governmentally micromanage as many aspects of people's lives as possible. That kind of atmosphere smothers an economy and everybody and every institution that has to function within it.

 

This is especially true in today's highly competitive globalized world where it is easier than ever to shift one's operations to areas that are more friendly and less hassle to function in.  Texas has been such an area relative to other parts of the USA - and, as a result, we have been the beneficiaries of a enormous brain drain and an enormous capital drain away from those other parts of the country and into ours.   Why would we wish to jeopardize that and start taking steps down the same road that has gutted the areas that people are fleeing from?  

 

It is not just the high tax burden that those other states impose - though, of course, that is a significant factor.  It is that, in such areas, it is hard to function without some variety of do-gooder or another with a governmental mandate in hand breathing down one's neck compelling one to do this or not do that and, if one does get to do it, it must be done some specific way;  That adds to the cost of doing business beyond just the taxes people must pay.  And that is why the cost of living is so high in those areas - and, unless one happens to be very affluent, for most people a higher cost of living translates into a lower standard of living.   That is why talent and capital are flowing in our direction.

 

I am not suggesting that dictating how downtown buildings must look, in and of itself, is going to kill the goose that, for now, is laying our golden eggs.   But it is an example of the wider sort of mindset that murdered the golden geese in other regions of the country that were once vibrant meccas of opportunity.

 

Furthermore, even from a strictly aesthetic standpoint, the enforcement of such governmental mandates, in the long run, is stifling and leads to sterility and mediocrity.

 

Imagine in the early 1900s if Frank Lloyd Wright had to bow down to and say "Yes Sir" to a similar committee comprised of individuals hell-bent on enforcing "good taste" as defined by the conventional standards of the day - for example, some form of classicism.  Imagine how many buildings he would have been allowed to put up if he had to answer before such a committee before they could be approved to be built.  It doesn't matter what one personally thinks of Frank Lloyd Wright's buildings - he is regarded by many as an innovator and they would have been denied many of his works had he been forced to confirm to the period's would-be enforcers of "good taste."   The same is true for those who came up with the mid-century style of architecture.   Same is true for those who came up with Brutalism.  Personally, I despise Brutalism and would enjoy seeing the world rid of it.  But if somebody like me or some committee in Fort Worth has the power to outlaw Brutalism because it is ugly - then that is the same power they have to outlaw Frank Lloyd Wright or any other innovator who comes along because it does not conform to their definition of "good taste."

 

Innovators of all stripes are, by definition, non-conventional.   Aesthetic innovators are, by definition, non-conformists and non-conventional (though this does not mean that any pretentious mediocrity who is non-conventional for the mere sake of being non-conventional is somehow an innovator). Governmental enforcement of aesthetic standards is, by definition, governmental enforcement of conformity and the enforcement of convention. It stifles creativity and innovation.

 

Part of the price of living in a free society is that people are free to indulge in the gaudy, the garish and in all sorts of things that one might regard as being in bad taste. I consider that to be a very small price to pay.


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#215 PeopleAreStrange

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Posted 11 October 2015 - 05:12 PM

Unfortunately, I have to disagree with you when it comes to building design standards, which are necessary in many areas.

 

Just recently, XTO tried to win approval on a very bland parking garage in an area surrounded by much more interesting buildings. Thankfully, XTO's garage design was rejected because it was too bland. Now, XTO will have to present a better looking garage. If downtown design standards didn't exist, that bland garage would've been approved, and anyone could build whatever they wanted downtown - a drive through bank, a strip mall, a gas station, a blank wall, etc. In the parts of downtown where those exist, there is little to no pedestrian activity.

 

It's unfortunate you brought up building designs, because I agreed with you on signage.


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#216 Dismuke

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Posted 11 October 2015 - 05:50 PM

People Are Strange:  Based on the pictures I saw, I think the parking garage that XTO proposed was butt ugly and an aesthetic blight.  But that is totally besides the point.   What you are basically suggesting is that, because you or I don't like how someone's proposed building looks, it is okay for us to try and get some politician to force the other person to conform to our tastes and wishes or else they don't get to put up the building.  Such a notion is completely antithetical to a free society.  

 

Aren't there tastes, interests or activities in some aspect of your own life that other people either disagree with or perhaps find distasteful?  How would you feel if some government official came along and told you that you are going to have to give them up because certain other people who happen to be politically connected do not approve of them?   And, in today's world, there is no shortage of people who have definite opinions on how you ought and ought not live your life.

 

In a free society, there are certain aspects of life that are simply not the proper subject of public policy debate - and, as long as you behave in a peaceful manner, there are vast areas in your life that other people, no matter how large of a majority that they might constitute, do not get to have a vote over. 

 

We are all entitled to our opinions - and goodness knows I certainly have a lot of opinions on a lot of matters, including how buildings ought to look.  But that does not give us a right to impose our opinions on other people.  The price of freedom is that other people have the freedom to do things that you or I might not approve of.  The alternative is that every aspect of life and every activity we undertake is potentially subject to the approval of somebody else.  There is a term for that kind of world - tyranny. 


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#217 PeopleAreStrange

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Posted 11 October 2015 - 08:25 PM

With the exception of Houston and a few other cities, most cities have rules and regulations for what you can build and where.

 

Fort Worth, just like any other city, has the right to regulate what gets built with zoning and design guidelines. XTO apparently violated guidelines.

 

This is for the benefit of anyone in the city, as everyone who is near what gets built has to live with what gets built.

 

---------------------------------------------------------------

 

As far as people living their life however they want, I agree with you as long as they don't harm other people or their rights.


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#218 Austin55

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Posted 11 October 2015 - 08:59 PM

There are several districts in Fort Worth which have design standards, and the rules are much more stringent than signs and awnings. Property owners should know what they are getting into. 

 

Here's a list of all those http://fortworthtexa...t/urban-design/



#219 Dismuke

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Posted 11 October 2015 - 11:50 PM

With the exception of Houston and a few other cities, most cities have rules and regulations for what you can build and where.

 

<snip>

 

This is for the benefit of anyone in the city, as everyone who is near what gets built has to live with what gets built.

 

 

 

 

But what you are talking about here falls into the category of land usage as opposed to design standards which I consider to be completely separate issues.

 

There are completely legitimate concerns underlying the issue of land usage.  People have the right to the peaceful, quite enjoyment and use of their private property.  And there are some uses of property that are clearly incompatible with other uses of property when in close proximity.  For example: if someone were to build a smelly rending plant near a residential neighborhood or shopping district  - or a night club with an outdoor patio and loud music opening up in earshot of a residential district. How one should go about addressing such concerns is an entirely different topic and debate. But the underlying issue behind the concerns and the debate is valid.

 

But the basic issue behind design standards is nothing more than the fact that some people do not like it when others fail to conform to their aesthetic tastes - and, therefore, they seek to impose their personal tastes on unwilling others.   That is profoundly wrong for all of the reasons I previously mentioned.

 

Now, I can understand why people might prefer to limit their exposure as much as possible to what they consider to be the bad taste of others.  I can understand why people might want to prevent what they regard as aesthetically distasteful from being placed in close proximity to their property.   But just because we might prefer or want something doesn't mean that we have a right to it.  If one doesn't want something that one considers to be ugly built near one's property - then there's always the option of  trying to buy up neighboring properties so that one is in full control.   Of course, most people do not have the luxury of doing that.  The other option is to find some sort of master planned development that has incorporated from the get-go aesthetic restrictions compatible with one's tastes.   There are all sorts of residential and business communities in the suburbs which have exactly those sorts of restrictions - and anybody buys into the development does so under the explicit understanding that they must abide by them.  If people wish to do that it is totally valid. 

 

Personally, I think that such places tend to be kind of boring.  But I can also see the appeal that they might have for some. In such instances, the restrictions are not an imposition - they are something that people voluntarily and contractually agree to.  Nobody is forcing anybody - if you disagree or dislike the developer's objectives you are free to locate someplace else.

 

A downtown situation is different - there is no such voluntary and contractual agreement.  The only way to bring about such homogenization is to impose it on dissenters by force - and that's wrong. Again - what we are talking about is using the city's police power to enforce some people's aesthetic opinions and personal preferences.on those who, for whatever reason, think otherwise.


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#220 renamerusk

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Posted 12 October 2015 - 08:45 AM

The only way to bring about such homogenization is to impose it on dissenters by force - and that's wrong. Again - what we are talking about is using the city's police power to enforce some people's aesthetic opinions and personal preferences.on those who, for whatever reason, think otherwise.

 

This thread is in danger of being side tracked, that being said, here's my take:

 

What we have in essence is a case, XOM, and most clearly not JOT, who wants its "opinion" to prevail by disregarding standards?  Where is it, other then in a failed state, that standards are ignored?

 

It seems to me that to suggest individuals or companies are "dissenters" is a stretch and it is an irrational hostility towards standards.  It is also harsh to suggest that standards are a means to "impose" upon those who unapologetically demonstrate by their actions their disregard to community norms. And yes, Downtown is a community.  While, it is true that individual rights are to be respected, it is also true that a city has the right and obligation to the public that it represents to set standards. There are examples too numerous to cite where the notion of absolute individual rights have gone terribly wrong.

 

In the case of a city,  a place which is the ultimate setting of what is meant by the word "public", the responsibility to preserve the organic health of a city is an important and intrinsic right of the city.  This responsibility has proven to be very popular and necessary, otherwise the public would have been moved to curtail this regulatory power. Deciding to live or to do business here or elsewhere is a privilege; and not a right, as is driving your personal vehicle on public roads.

 

Individuals and companies have two choices: to comply with community standards or to go to a place with lower standards that will meet their needs.



#221 John T Roberts

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Posted 12 October 2015 - 09:06 AM

I would suggest that we direct the discussion back to the new Frost Tower building and maybe discuss the latest news that the bank is relocating from 777 Main into the new building.



#222 johnfwd

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Posted 12 October 2015 - 09:35 AM

Yes, indeed.  Naming it the "Frost Bank Tower," when the initial promoter was Jetta Operating Company, LLC.  I've done some commercial real estate legal work in the past, but I'm no expert at marketing in this field.  At the risk of sounding naïve... I'm puzzled by this apparent switch in name bragging rights.  Is this customary?  Did someone else promote the old Continental National Bank tower?  D.R. Horton tower?



#223 johnfwd

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Posted 20 October 2015 - 08:47 AM

On my way walking past the Fort Worth Club parking lot this morning, I observed two loads of red barricades and some hard-hat construction workers.  No fooling this time, site preparation is about to begin.  Wonder if that pushes up the ground-breaking?



#224 John T Roberts

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Posted 20 October 2015 - 09:14 AM

I have known about the actual groundbreaking ceremony for about two weeks.  I didn't know if it was public knowledge and I haven't seen anything about it in the media, so I decided to stay quiet.  I have also received my formal invitation.  All I can say is that the groundbreaking is imminent. 



#225 renamerusk

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Posted 20 October 2015 - 01:15 PM

I have known about the actual groundbreaking ceremony for about two weeks.  I didn't know if it was public knowledge and I haven't seen anything about it in the media, so I decided to stay quiet.  I have also received my formal invitation.  All I can say is that the groundbreaking is imminent. 

 

:)



#226 John T Roberts

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Posted 21 October 2015 - 04:47 AM

Channel 5 News is reporting that the groundbreaking is today.  In order to celebrate that, the building finally has a listing and a description on this site's main page.



#227 JBB

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Posted 21 October 2015 - 06:16 AM

Very nice. I can't wait to see this one rise up.

#228 johnfwd

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Posted 21 October 2015 - 09:32 AM

What time is the ground-breaking?  And, hopefully it won't rain today.



#229 John T Roberts

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Posted 21 October 2015 - 07:35 PM

Sorry for being late with my reply, but the groundbreaking was at 4:00 PM.



#230 Austin55

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Posted 22 October 2015 - 08:22 AM

FWBP reporting on the groundbreaking,

 

http://www.fortworth...ad597f2688.html



#231 JBB

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Posted 22 October 2015 - 08:50 AM

Meanwhile, the Star Telegram's home page is busy covering the weather, the Arlington mayor's war on potholes, and the southern extension of 360.

Nice coverage by the Press and there's a link to the building's website. Nothing that I haven't seen, but some very nice renderings.

#232 johnfwd

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Posted 22 October 2015 - 09:18 AM

Unfortunately the Star-Telegram's alliance with the Dallas Morning News tends, in my opinion, to influence our once "local" daily newspaper to focus more on metroplex rather than Fort Worth news.  Maybe FWBP has the same broad focus but I think it pays more attention to local business news and activities.

 

As an aside, I noted the first sentence of the FWBP article that this is the first commercial "skyscraper" in downtown in 20 years.  I guess we have a notion that a skyscraper is more than 16 stories (the height of the relatively more recent Carnegie building).  But the word skyscraper has been defined formally as a "very tall building" or something like that but there's no specific number of floors mentioned.



#233 Austin55

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Posted 22 October 2015 - 09:39 AM

I general generally prefer FWBP. Free is a big plus. ST seems to be a lot of useless articles as well.

Regarding the tower, does anyone know if the residential penthouses have been dropped? They've not been mentioned lately.

#234 Austin55

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Posted 30 October 2015 - 01:47 PM

Drove past after forum lunch, not a great shot but a great sight (site?) to see. 

 

DSC_0237.jpg



#235 Austin55

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Posted 06 November 2015 - 02:24 PM

Walkaround video of a model

 

https://twitter.com/...f_src=twsrc^tfw



#236 rriojas71

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Posted 07 November 2015 - 08:39 AM

very cool model... only wish it was from a but further back so that the entirety of the elevation was viewable.

#237 Austin55

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Posted 04 December 2015 - 02:40 PM

 

Developer lands $73.5M to fund 25-story Frost Tower project in downtown Fort Worth

 

http://www.bizjourna...rost-tower.html



#238 johnfwd

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Posted 10 December 2015 - 12:38 PM

Site work has begun and the barricaded area has been expanded into the streets.  Fifth and Taylor will be a very busy construction area for many months to come.



#239 John T Roberts

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Posted 10 December 2015 - 01:53 PM

I was noticing that last night.  I attended the Stockyards Meeting and drove through downtown on my way home. The applications were made for the street barricades on December 3rd.

 

On a related note, they have filed the final drawings with the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation for their accessibility review. The filing with the TDLR is either done just before or concurrently with the application for a City Building Permit.  I checked both databases and they were both filed on December 8th. 



#240 Austin55

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Posted 16 December 2015 - 09:43 PM

I have drawn a diagram of the building for Skyscraperpage.com's website. You can see it in the city diagram here

 

jettadrawin5_zpsmxvcsjrh.gif



#241 Austin55

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Posted 30 December 2015 - 07:49 PM

Current state

 

DSC_0340_zpsxijogzdk.jpg



#242 John T Roberts

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Posted 31 December 2015 - 08:37 AM

If you can, please continue to provide us with the construction work below grade that is taken from above.



#243 renamerusk

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Posted 31 December 2015 - 03:20 PM

My new favorite "pit". :D



#244 John T Roberts

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Posted 31 December 2015 - 03:39 PM

It will look better as time goes on. 



#245 Austin55

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Posted 31 December 2015 - 04:28 PM

If I remember right the garage below ground is 4 levels which seemsrather deep. Are there any garage in DT that are deeper? I know several that are 1 level below ( Cityplace, the garage under Gen. Worth Square, below the Tower Annex)

#246 John T Roberts

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Posted 31 December 2015 - 10:26 PM

Austin, is the parking below General Worth Square only one level below grade?  I thought it was two levels. 

 

The Omni Hotel has at least three levels below grade.  I checked my construction photographs and it looks like there are three.  However, I do have a gap in time with some of those early photographs.



#247 Urbndwlr

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Posted 04 January 2016 - 12:56 PM

I have drawn a diagram of the building for Skyscraperpage.com's website. You can see it in the city diagram here

 

jettadrawin5_zpsmxvcsjrh.gif

Austin55, I just looked at the skyscraper page and noticed that the Carnegie building and the Trinity Terrace buildings are missing from the Fort Worth page.

Dont know if you or someone you know would care to update that. 



#248 Austin55

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Posted 04 January 2016 - 01:08 PM


 

 

Austin55, I just looked at the skyscraper page and noticed that the Carnegie building and the Trinity Terrace buildings are missing from the Fort Worth page.

Dont know if you or someone you know would care to update that. 

 

 

By default the site does not list buildings that are proposed or do not have drawings. In the menu below you can alter what you see to list those. AT&T, Carnegie, River Tower and a few others simply do not have any drawings. As for Frost, SSP uses "foundation work" to define buildings under construction, and since Frost is currently just in site clearing/excavation it's still considered to be proposed. 



#249 johnfwd

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Posted 04 January 2016 - 01:45 PM

Are there structural safety concerns for multi-level garages underground beyond, say, three levels?



#250 Urbndwlr

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Posted 05 January 2016 - 04:06 PM

Doubtful other than the need to keep water out of the garages. 

Probably have serious pumps available to do that in case of flood.







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Downtown, Office, New Construction, Bennett Benner Partnership, Frost Tower, 640 Taylor

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