9/9 FRI 8:00 | The Redevelopment of Downtown West Palm Beach
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9/9 FRI 8:00 | The Redevelopment of Downtown West Palm Beach

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Ana Aponte ...

Ana Aponte
Kim Briesmeister
Melissa Hege

Downtown West Palm Beach has completed almost two decades of redevelopment, positioning itself as one of the most active downtown areas in South Florida. During these years a complex planning process has been undertaken, including the implementation of two Master Plans by three strong mayors, a development boom and a subsequent recession. The presentation
will explore the interaction between planning goals, political environment and the real estate market. What can we learn from the past 20 years of redevelopment? How can we practice planning
in the real world?

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  • What I am going to do is to walk you through 3 decades of redevelopment in downtown west palm beach.
  • During the 1970’s downtown WPB experience what most of the cities in the nation did. A decline in downtown activity. The suburban experience. However, starting in the 80’s and during almost three decades downtown WPB has gone from vacant storefronts and deserted streets to an active and vibrant environment.
  • Add photo res project.
  • What happened? Is there any trend? So I started by just simply listing the different buildings built starting at the end of the 80s, and I found out that the process was generally divided in three. 1,493 residential units added since 1994 1,600,000 sf of non-residential added since 1994
  • The large scale public-private partnership is represented by CityPlace, a 72 acre mixed-use development with included in its 1 st phase 600,000sf of retail, 700 seat cultural center, 576 residential units and a 4,000 parking garage between others. CityPlace openned its doors in october 2000.
  • But how was that possible? In 1986 two developers David Palladino and Henry Rolfs started assembling a large piece of land on the western side of downtown. Plan to convert a dilapidated neighborhood next to Okeechobee Blvd into a complex of offices, retail shops, hotels and apartments. The land assemblage was possible due to the existing tax structure which allowed private investors to discount the losses from investment in real estate from the taxes. In 1986 Ronald Reagan reformed the tax code and closed that loop hole. At that time it was not financially possible to hold on large pieces of land. Downtown/uptown went into bankruptcy.
  • Before going into bankruptcy: Developers negotiated the widening of Okeechobee Blvd Developers donated 5.2 acres of land for the Kravis Center 1990 Downtown/Uptown went into bankruptcy. Different owners hold the properties.
  • Then, in 1991 the City changed its charter and moved from a commission form of government into a strong mayor form of government. When Nancy Graham got into office the Kravis Center was under construction and Okeechobee Blvd was being widened as we know it today.
  • Nancy Graham elected as Mayor in 1991 Strong Mayor push for a new project – The land all in legal battles. 1995 City acquired property with a 20 mill Sunshine state loan. Use of eminent domain powers, and negotiated settlements to re-assembled the 72 acres. By this time, Okeechobee Blvd was widened and the Kravis Center was completed and functioning on 5.2 acres of land donated by the Uptown/Downtown developers in 1989.
  • 1996 RFP for the design of CityPlace At the time of the RFP, the Master Plan had been already approved. The design of CityPlace followed the Master Plan – Connected the project with the rest of downtown, proposed a mixed of uses with buildings adressing the street and creating an active street environment.
  • In summary interventions like the CityPlace project were possible due to many different factors. In one side we had tax regulations that permitted the large scale land assemblage, and the eminent domain rules that allowed the City to put the land back together after the private developer bankruptcy. We had a CRA that made the deal possible, a Master Plan that guided the design and ensured the new project will spur redevelopment in the rest of downtown, and a strong Mayor that put all the Government efforts into it. Even now, the project is still moving forward, the palm beach county convention center hotel is still in the process, and a new development is planned for the tent site. However, replicating a project like CityPlace would be difficult. In 2005 the kelo vs City of New London set up restriction for eminent domain, limiting the city’s powers to use eminent domain in the name of economic development.
  • With this restriction in mind we start with what I call our 2 nd strategy -Incentives to private development through regulations Joel Daves elected as a mayor The administration was looking for ways to leverage the success of the CityPlace development and attract new development. We still had a downtown with lots of parking lots despite the re-birth of Clematis Street, our historic main street.
  • So, two programs were put in place as incentives for private development -RIP allowed the increased in development capacity from 5 stories to 8 stories for those projects proposing residential uses. In return the project had to provide a public plaza as part of the project. TDR allowed the use of un-used development capacity coming from historic building.
  • The two programs were put into place and a result 2600 new residential unit were built. It is difficult to say how much of the results is product of the incentives and how much of the residential boom, but in any case, the market worked to populate the downtown area. In 2007 the DPZ Master Plan is updated by Zyscovich, and the RIP expired.
  • With the revised Master Plan in place and a new Mayor in office the City started a different approach -Public Investment to support private development Construction of major public projects – City Hall, Library and waterfront park Revisions on regulatory framework to solve issues generated by the recent development
  • With the revised Master Plan in place and a new Mayor in office the City started a different approach -Public Investment to support private development Construction of major public projects – City Hall, Library and waterfront park Revisions on regulatory framework to solve issues generated by the recent development
  • Clematis Garage
  • During Lois Frankel the waterfront had a major facelift. The library moved from the end of Clematis Street and opened the view of the intracoastal waterway with a large open space named the City Commons, a new pavillion for events and new gardens, fountains and pedestrian paths. The project created a new amenity for downtown visitors and residents, making the area more special.
  • Public Investment to support private development The WCI land acquisition is other example of public investment to promote private development. The land was acquired to be converted into a public space which will
  • In summary, my believe is that the redevelopment of downtown west palm beach has followed these 3 approaches, which have taken the city to what I consider a successful case. The 3 approaches explained do not mean other projects did not take place, or other approaches were not implemented at the same time. As you all now the redevelopment process is a complex process that involved various players and different strategies. These presentation also does not intent to indicate we are done. There are still many areas of downtown that need work and we are looking ahead to the implementation of the revised Master Plan.

9/9 FRI 8:00 | The Redevelopment of Downtown West Palm Beach Presentation Transcript

  • 1. The Redevelopment of Downtown West Palm Beach APA Florida Conference Palm Beach, September 9, 2011
  • 2.
    • 1970’s – Downtown decline
    • - VACANT STOREFRONTS
    • DESERTED STREET
  • 3. Major redevelopment occurred Kravis Center for the performing arts Clematis Street streetscape City Place Waterfront park
  • 4. How was this possible?
  • 5. 1991-1999 Nancy Graham 1980 1990 2000 2010 2003 -2011 Lois Frankel 1999-2003 Joel Daves CityPlace New City Hall and Library New Waterfront Park PBC Convention Center City Plaza I, The Metropolitan 610 Clematis, The Edge The Whitney, City Plaza II, CityPlace South, City Palms The Prado Phillips Point Esperante Building Institutional/cultural uses Private development Office Residential Mixed-use Built projects The Strand The Esplanade 101 Clematis Street 1 N Clematis Street
  • 6.
    • Three different types of strategies:
    • Large scale public-private partnership
    • Regulatory framework to promote private investment
    • Public investment to support private development
  • 7. 1980 1990 2000 2010 1. Large scale public-private partnership The CityPlace case 72 acre mixed-use development Phase I 600,000 sf of retail 20 screen Cinema 700 seat cultural center 576 residential units 4,000 parking garage CityPlace
  • 8. 1980 1990 2000 2010 1. Large scale public-private partnership The CityPlace case Downtown/Uptown bankruptcy CityPlace Downtown/Uptown land acquisition 1986 Reagan’s Tax reform
  • 9. 1. Large scale public-private partnership The CityPlace case Before going into bankruptcy: - 1989 Developer donates 5.2 acres for the Kravis Center - 1990 Negotiations to widen Okeechobee Blvd (cost shared by County-City –Developer)
  • 10. 1980 1990 2000 2010 1. Large scale public-private partnership The CityPlace case 1991-1999 Nancy Graham Downtown/Uptown bankruptcy CityPlace Downtown/Uptown land acquisition 1986 Reagan’s Tax reform
  • 11. 1. Large scale public-private partnership The CityPlace case 1994 – Downtown Master Plan process starts 1995 City obtained $20 M Sunshine State Loan to acquire the properties - used eminent domain powers - negotiated settlements Re-assembled 72 acres of land 1991 - Nancy Graham elected WPB Mayor
  • 12. 1. Large scale public-private partnership The CityPlace case 1996 City issued an RFP for design/construction of CityPlace Downtown Master Plan vision used as a base for the CityPlace design – mixed use development
  • 13. 1. Large scale public-private partnership The CityPlace case RFP awarded to the Palladium Companies Phase I 600,000 sf of retail 20 screen Cinema 700 seat cultural center 576 residential units 4,000 parking garage
  • 14. 1991-1999 Nancy Graham 1980 1990 2000 2010 Palm Beach County Convention Center DPZ’s Master Plan 1. Large scale public-private partnership The CityPlace case CityPlace deal Downtown/Uptown bankruptcy 1986 Reagan’s Tax reform Sunshine state Loan Public/Private partnership CityPlace Downtown/Uptown land acquisition 2005 Eminent Domain restrictions
  • 15. 2. Regulatory framework to promote private investment RIP and TDRs programs 1999 – Joel Daves elected WPB Mayor CityPlace opened in 2000 with success Leverage the success of CityPlace and attract new development
  • 16. 2. Regulatory framework to promote private investment RIP and TDRs programs
    • 2001 City adopted a Residential incentive program -RIP
    • Increased development capacity for residential uses
    • 2002 City Adopted the Transfer of Development Rights Program - TDR
    • - Preserve historic building within downtown + increase development capacity
  • 17. RIP 2. Regulatory framework to promote private investment RIP and TDRs programs TDR Entirely a regulatory incentive - No financial support from City - Approximately 2,600 units built
  • 18. 1991-1999 Nancy Graham 1980 1990 2000 2010 1999-2003 Joel Daves CityPlace DPZ’s Master Plan Regs. to incentivize private investment City Plaza I, The Metropolitan 610 Clematis, The Edge The Whitney, City Plaza II, CityPlace South, City Palms The Prado RIP TDR Zyscovich’s Master Plan
  • 19. 3. Public investment to support private development The institutional project Acquisition of 2.8 acres of land to build City Hall and Library 2003 – Lois Frankel elected WPB Mayor
  • 20. 3. Public investment to support private development The institutional project
    • Activate a block of Clematis Street
    • 150,000sf office
    • 83,000sf library
    • 4,000sf photo center
    Old D&D center
  • 21. 3. Public investment to support private development The institutional project 600 car garage to support Clematis Street
  • 22. 3. Public investment to support private development The institutional project City Commons and Waterfront park
  • 23. 3. Public investment to support private development WCI site – Land acquisition to promote private development The institutional project
  • 24.
    • Digital Domain – Tent site
    • Land conveyed to developer
    • $10 mill grant funds
    • Phase I – 150,000sf
    • Digital animation production facility
    • Digital Domain Institute
    • Florida State Institute film school
    • Phase II -350,000sf
    • Digital media and film application
    • production
    What is next? public-private partnerships
  • 25. 1991-1999 Nancy Graham 1980 1990 2000 2010 2003 -2011 Lois Frankel 1999-2003 Joel Daves CityPlace New City Hall and Library New Waterfront Park PBC Convention Center DPZ’s Master Plan Zyscovich’s Master Plan Public investment to support private The Redevelopment process Regs. to incentivize private investment Public/Private partnership
  • 26. Panel Discussion
    • I am going to start with the visionary.
    • Mayor Frankel-
    • What do you think is the next step in the redevelopment process of downtown west palm beach?
    • Melissa
    • What do you think will the role of the Zyscovich’s Master Plan be in the next phase of downtown redevelopment?
    • Kim
    • On a complex process such as a redevelopment, what do you think is the prime role of a Master Plan?
    • Answer is it needs to provide a balance of predictability with flexibility.
    • Frankel
    • How do you look at new projects or development opportunities that deviate from an approved vision?
    • Kim
    • How do economics and real estate markets effect planning decisions?  Answer is some plans are not realistic from a market perspective and someone that can measure the economic impact of a project need to help planners determine if a project or current zoning/master plans should be modified.
    • what do you think will most effect development in the future. I will talk about macro economics like the finance market and then tie it back down to smaller changes of how we are dealing with the private sector.