GRAND RAPIDS — The developers behind a proposed downtown skyscraper presented more details last night regarding plans to build the city’s tallest building, but the proposal has yet to cross the finish line.
Executives from Portage-based The Hinman Co. showed off material samples and enhanced drawings to members of the Grand Rapids Historic Preservation Commission (HPC). However, many commissioners remained skeptical of how the proposed tower — planned for apartments and a hotel on a wedge-shaped parking lot at 10 Ionia Ave. NW — would fit with the surrounding historic district.
While the developers offered numerous examples of nearby newer buildings they felt could serve as examples of what they hope to build, commissioners made clear that the proposed tower had to lend to the historic district.
As MiBiz previously reported, commissioners already signed off on the height but material choices and overall design remain a point of concern for many.
The Hinman Company also plans to renovate a parking structure it owns across the street and build a skywalk connecting the two structures. The skywalk would require approval from the city’s Planning Department.
Wednesday’s meeting was purely an informal advisory hearing, so the developers were not seeking any specific approvals for the project.
HPC members offered Hinman Company executives, architects and consultants a handful of suggestions, but also made clear that they wouldn’t do “architecture from the podium.”
Hinman Company COO Rich MacDonald told commissioners the firm had enough information to move forward with the project, but offered no further details of what that might entail.
Following the hearing, MacDonald declined a request from MiBiz for further comment.