NORWALK, Conn. — Haters of the pipe dream set for South Norwalk can perhaps rejoice – General Growth Partners (GGP) has revised its plan for The SoNo Collection’s parking garage.
Also revised is just about every other major feature of the approved plan.
The following is a memo written by GGP Senior Designer Paul Madden to the Zoning Commission:
- Clerestory Revision -The proposed geometry of the clerestory at the top level of the mall has been modified. The approved design has a curved form. The proposed revision indicates a straight configuration which resolves a shelf condition and brings more light to the interior of the space. The clerestory is not visible from the street level or I-95.
- Skylight Revision -The proposed revision removes the skylight previously located above the court adjacent to Bloomingdales and replaces it with an architectural feature. Given the vast glass wall at the west of this court provides significant natural light to this space, this is an opportunity to reduce project costs without compromising the quality of the interior experience.
- South West Plaza -The proposed revision offers an alternate design for the plaza. This design incorporates RDA design review comments regarding pavement patterns, modifies the previously designed interactive fountain to a raised fountain; and introduces a lawn at the center of the plaza inplace of hardscape. The proposed design revision addresses operational concerns regarding the interactive fountain and eliminates the code requirement for a public restroom adjacent to the plaza, but maintains a water feature as focal point in the plaza. The plaza will continue to accommodate event programming.
- North Water Street/West Ave Monumental Stair Revision -The exterior stair at the northern comer of North Water Street and West Ave bas been modified. This revision creates a stronger comer retail presence by returning the retail storefront around the corner to North Water Street. The shortened stair height reduces the “cliff effect”, and creates better access from the parking lot at level 1 to the street retail, while providing easier access to the mall from the entry core at North Water Street. The proposal moves the southernmost ‘jewel box’ building edge south, allowing for a better retail configuration at the mall levels.
- North & West Ave Facade Materials -The revision proposes changes to the exterior finish materials at the North and West Facades. The revision is calling for E.I.F.S. at the upper ‘jewel boxes”, with E.I.F.S., glass and a proposed trellis between the Jewel boxes. Brick finish is being proposed at grade adjacent to the tenant storefronts. The proposal has been revised to revert back to the previous approved design along West Avenue of Brick Masonry at the Jewel Boxes separated by glass walls. The North facade is proposed to have a Brick Masonry Jewell Box at the west end of the North Facade; and we are proposing an EIFS material at the center box. The rotated box at the Southern side of North Water Street along West Ave is proposed to be Fiber Cement Panel, which is a replacement of the previously approved terra cotta.
- East Facade Materials – The proposed East Facade materials has been revised to include: Architectural Ground Face CMU to replace the previous architectural precast concrete panel at the east facade base and stair towers; EIFS at the articulated “frame” to replace the precast panels; and the quantity of tube sections “fins” on the east facade has been reduced by 20%.
- North Service Drive Loading Dock -This revision adds a loading dock accessed from the North Service drive north of N. Water Street. This dock is required to provide service to the southeast tenants at mall level three. These tenants had been cut off from service access by the mall corridor leading to the roof terrace.
- Roof Terrace -We are proposing a modification to the roof terrace. After internal evaluation of the viability of the proposed kiosk, we are removing this element and reducing the size of the terrace accordingly.
- Third Floor Retail -We are proposing the addition of retail space at mall level three, partially above the Sculpture Garden. We believe the addition of quality retail space has minimal impact to the sculpture garden as we have maintained a two-story space for the majority of that area as originally proposed and as seen from I-95. The sculpture garden plan at Mall level 2, and exterior building curtainwall defining this space remain as previously proposed.
The Zoning Commission on Wednesday is considering signage for the mall, a proposal that has been favorably reviewed for the Redevelopment Agency by consultant Steve Cecil of the Cecil Group.