Today the City Council approved a change in zoning for a new development in Uptown: the Hanover Residential Tower.
Hanover will be constructing a residential tower on the northern part of the block at McKinney, St. Paul, and Harwood. The lot was zoned for heavy commercial uses, and the developer wanted to add residential uses.
The developer worked with surrounding property owners to reduce the impact on their views of Downtown (“view corridors”). As a result, the developer sought to make its tower thinner and taller — 45′ taller than the 240′ zoning standard permitted by the Oak Lawn Planned Development District. (The same height as the Crescent.) They also asked for increased density for the development.
For these additional zoning rights, the builder agreed to restrict part of its property (the little panhandle that abuts Harwood) to parking and greenspace, and not build on that part of the lot.
I also requested that the builder put in wider sidewalks than required. Uptown is a pedestrian area, and is quickly linking with Downtown and Victory. I get so frustrated walking or riding my bike in Uptown where the sidewalks are so tiny. We need to make the area pedestrian-friendly, and the narrow sidewalks discourage people from walking. So instead of little 4′ sidewalks, I requested 5′ of parkway and 10′ sidewalks on the McKinney and Harwood sides, and a 5′ parkway and 7′ sidewalks on the St. Paul side.
Lastly, I requested that the builder camouflage the parking garage to make it look less like a garage and more like the rest of the building’s facades.
I also stripped out a number of heavy commercial uses that should no longer be allowed at that site.
Overall, this is going to be a great contribution to Uptown, and I am pleased with the resulting zoning changes.
VOTE: Unanimously in favor.