Mix it Up

ur city’s abundance of mixed-use developments offer residents a place to get a cup of joe, their hair cut—even check out a library book—all within steps of their front door. The antihesis of a sprawling country manse or digs in the ‘burbs, these tighter-knit urban developments are luring Madisonians back downtown, or near downtown, to experience city life and bring back a sense of community. After all, you can’t help but say hello to your neighbor over breakfast crepes at the café downstairs.

(Monroe Street)

Developer: TRIO Development, Keller Real Estate and Slinde Realty Company

Property value: $25 million

Residences: 52 condos Price Range: $200,000–$650,000 (eighteen units still for sale)

Square footage range: 1,100–2,500 Finshed: 2008

Residential Component: “There’s a large variety of floorplans; there’s really something for everyone,” says Bert Slinde, broker/owner of Slinde Realty Company. “People feel like it’s a good value.”

Who’s buying: All kinds—UW professors, business owners, retirees and young professionals.

Commercial component: After Ken Copp’s closed, the neighborhood voiced a desire for another grocery store, says Jill Buechner of TRIO Development. Trader Joe’s, the California-based grocery store chain, was chosen for Monroe Commons’ ground-level 12,000-square-foot commercial space. Its smaller size and more gourmet and unique offerings fit in perfectly with the upscale retail mix currently on the street.

What’s unique: Location is Monroe Commons’ biggest asset. “I have a number of people who say they don’t want to live downtown, but want to feel the bustle and excitenment—without the chaos,” says Slinde. “They love the urban sense, but you’re in a neighborhood.”

(entire block framed by Broom, West Washington, Main and Henry streets)

Developer: The Alexander Company

Property value: $110 million

Residences: First phase: 164 residential units

Condo Price Range: $169,900 (condo tower)–$1 million (penthouse)

Square footage range: 650 (condo tower)–3,000 (penthouse)

Finished: 2008. The first residential phase is completed and the retail component is still unoccupied. Second-phase Hyatt Place Hotel, a boutique hotel for business travelers, will be completed in 12–18 months. The third phase is zoned for an eleven-story condo tower that mirrors the current condo tower on Main and Henry streets, and will be completed in four to five years.

Residential Component: Four different living options: the Broom Street Lofts (23 homes), the condo tower (126 units), the Capitol Court Townhomes (10 homes) and the Washington Rowhouses (5 homes).

Who’s buying: “People who want to be downtown, close to State Street, the Capitol and the lakes,” says Dan Peterson, director of communications for the Alexander Company. “It’s two different age groups: under-35 young professionals and people 55 and older—empty nesters and people that are downsizing or want a second home.”

Commercial component: There is 10,000 square feet of retail space available in the ground floor of the 209 [condo] building. “We’re in talks with a number of businesses of what’s going to be in there,” says Peterson. “Obviously we want businesses that are going to cater to our condo buyers and the surrounding neighbors. Whether it’s a sandwich shop or some other retail amenity, we want our buyers and neighbors to utilize the convenience of that space.”

What’s unique: “The homes we’ve created are as diverse as the group of people that designed them. Unlike a lot of condo developments, we’re offering a different array of architectural styles,” says Peterson. The urban architecture of Capitol West can be likened to something of that in Seattle, Portland or Chicago. The current condo tower used the concrete shell of the old Meriter Hospital building and added two floors on top. “Our niche is adaptive reuse and infill development,” adds Peterson. “Cap West uses both of those concepts. We utilized the existing infrastructure of this block.”

(East Mifflin Street)

Developer: McGrath Associates

Property value: “At the time we built it, it was valued at about $30 million,” says Lance McGrath, president of McGrath Associates.

Total residences: 64 condos

Condo Price Range: $329,000–$2 million-plus

Square footage range: 1,000–6,000 Finished: 2002

Residential Component: Ten floors of condos guarantee sights of the Capitol, Lake Mendota and busy street life. As of press time, four units were for sale.

Who’s buying: “Longtime Madisonians,” says Chris Atkinson, an agent with Bunbury & Associates. “Capitol Point is very much a empty nester-type building. The kids are out of college, and the [owner] might be closer to retirement. They like the sense of community in the building.”

Commercial component: 1,750 square feet of street-level space houses CSG Architecture and Bradbury’s Coffee Espresso & Crepes. You may have seen Bradbury’s in that slick glass-encased point at the corner of Hamilton, Webster and Carroll streets. Gotham Bagels, a hair salon and McGrath Associates, also on the street level, are part of the Parkside Building that’s connected to Capitol Point.

What’s unique: McGrath Associates renovated the attached Parkside Building as part of the project. The two buildings are connected through the shared-access rooftop terrace. “At the time it was built, Capitol West was one of the forebears to a lot of the condos that have been built in downtown Madison,” says McGrath.

(Johnson Street and University Avenue)

Developer: Executive Management Inc. Lucky is owned by EMI, UW–Madison and Steve Brown Apartments.

Property value: $120 million

Residences: 359 apartments Rent price range: $470–$1,000

Square footage range: 402 (studio)–1,577 (four bedroom) Finished: 2008

Residential Component: Regular apartments on floors 7–14. Lucky101 apartments are on floors 4–6 and are for first-year or transfer college students.

Who’s renting: A wide range of customers: First year and transfer college students all the way up to a group of retirees (who live on the fourteenth floor). Professors and attorneys live here too, says Margaret Watson, chief operating officer of Steve Brown Apartments.

Commercial component: Lucky has a second-floor food court that houses four fast-food restaurants. The retail space is fifty-five percent leased, says Sue Springman, president of EMI. “We have several other leases in the works, one with a bike shop and electronics store, and we’re seeking a grocery store. [We are] still working on a large restaurant [or] sports bar,” says Springman. The university will occupy their portion of the development in spring 2009.

What’s unique: Lucky’s concierge service is akin to a hotel’s concierge desk; residents can have groceries delivered and dry cleaning picked up, for example. The concierge can call a cab, make dinner reservations or even help with furniture or computer assembly.

(Midvale and Tokay boulevards)

Developer: Krupp General Contractors and Midvale Plaza Joint Venture

Property value: $38 million

Residences: 45 condos and 100 apartments

Condo Price Range: $160,000–$460,000 Square footage range: 505–1,650 (condos); 700–1,500 (apartments)

Built: 2008. Phase two, the apartments, will be complete in March 2010.

Who’s buying: “The price range will attract a wide range of buyers,” says Joe Krupp, chairman of Krupp General Contractors. “Possibly some university people, like a grad student, would like the smaller [apartment] units. Or people that have lived in the neighborhood that want to sell their house and buy a condo.”

Commercial component: There’s 17,500 square feet of commercial space. Current tenants include Chocolate Shoppe and EVP Coffee. “There are a number of others we’re negotiating with,” says Krupp.

What’s unique: The Sequoya branch of the Madison Public Library is on the ground floor—and has been expanded to 20,000 square feet, almost twice the old size. “The housing integrated with the library is a huge amenity that people are attracted to,” says Krupp. “Libraries nowadays provide so many services.” Plus you can’t beat Sequoya’s location: its near-west location is just minutes from Hilldale Mall, the west side, downtown and the Beltline.

Shayna Miller is associate and style editor of Madison Magazine.