Aggieville Community Vision
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Updated Plan Documents
On October 23, 2019 the City of Manhattan held an open house where design concepts for a parking garage (located south of Rally House) were vetted to the public. Concepts for Phase I of streetscape improvements including sections of 12th Street, Bluemont Avenue, West Laramie Street, 14th Street, and North Manhattan Avenue were also vetted. Concepts will be taken to the City Commission for consideration by the end of the year. You may give input using the Community Forum or by contacting Ben Chmiel. Select images below for more detail.
Video presentation of design concepts
View the describing the future vision for Aggieville and projects to follow. The document is responding to the issues identified and the opportunities explored through research and community input we received through focus group meetings, outreach events, an open house, and our community survey yielding more than 4,200 responses. The plan was adopted by the City Commission via Ordinance no. 7280 on April 18, 2017.
Other planning documents continuing the effort of the vision can be viewed below. Aggieville Vision to Reality Concept plans outline more detailed concepts related to parking garages, streetscape design, and Triangle Park.
Fly around in the representing the future massing concepts, streetscape improvements, and redevelopment opportunities in the Aggieville Community Vision. Please note that the model is data heavy and may take several minutes to load. It may operate slowly for some users and may not work on all hardware or Web browsers. You can also watch the narrated video fly-though which describes the model and the concepts of the plan in more detail.
Current Projects and Initiatives
Below, you'll find information on current projects and initiatives relating to the implementation of the Aggieville Community Vision plan.
Parking Garage Design
In May 2019 the City Commission authorized finalization and execution of design agreements with Olsson, of Manhattan to begin creating designs for a public parking garage on the city-owned parking lot at N. Manhattan Avenue and West Laramie Street (south of Rally House). With the garage will come a parking management plan. The garage is envisioned to supply approximately 500 spaces on five levels. Ground floor commercial space will be integrated along N. Manhattan and Laramie street. Construction is expected to begin in 2020. See top of page for updated concepts.
Laramie, North Manhattan, Bluemont and 12th Street Improvements
In May, 2019 the City Commission also authorized finalization and execution of design agreements with Olsson, of Manhattan to begin creating designs for the streets around where the new public parking garage will be built south of Rally House and where the new hotel will be built at 12th and Bluemont. The design will consider and include new amenities like sidewalk widening, lighting, seating, landscaping, and temporary and/or permanent plazas. Work is expected to begin in 2020, in coordination with adjacent construction projects. See top of page for updated concepts.
In May 2019 the northwest corner of 11th and Bluemont was rezoned to allow for the construction of a 4-story, 33-unit apartment building addition to the 12b lofts. This project further develops the vision for the the Bluemont Avenue Corridor as a high-density urban edge of Aggieville, providing additional housing options in the Aggieville area. The project is expected to be completed by Fall of 2020.
14th & Laramie Redevelopment
A 3-story mixed-use building on the corner of 14th and Laramie, across from Burger King, is expected to be constructed with about 5,000 square feet of commercial-retail space and 25 loft apartments. It would be the first private redevelopment along the Laramie Corridor since the plan adoption. The building would serve as a gateway to Aggieville from the west, creating a more urban edge defining the district.
TIF District Establishment
The Aggieville Community Vision will require a public funding source to finance public improvements like multi-story parking garages, landscaping, and street amenities. One of those sources is Tax Increment Financing. What does that mean? When a TIF district is created, the City establishes a base valuation of the district and freezes it. The district continues to provide property tax revenue to the City, County, USD 383 and State at that level for the next 20 years. The City then captures the increase above the base in tax revenue resulting from rising property value in the future years. This is not a new tax or additional fee, it is a result of growth and increased valuations due to development and increases in land values. The City invests that money directly back into the district in the form of public improvements. Those public improvements attract more private development and reinvestment, which in turn increases the value of property in the district that the city can again capture and invest back in the district- and the process repeats itself. This is the same mechanism the City used to finance improvements to Downtown since 2006.
The City Commission established the boundary in March 2019 and it is expected to be finalized Summer 2019.
In August 2018, the southwest corner of 12th and Bluemont, including part of the old City parking lot next to Starbucks, was rezoned to allow for the construction of a five-story hotel.
The hotel will contain 127 guest rooms and a 113-stall parking garage. This will be the first major private commercial redevelopment following the adoption of the Aggieville Community Vision Plan, which envisions the Bluemont corridor as a high-density urban edge of Aggieville. This development will also provide economic support for the district by increasing the number of visitors to Aggieville and leveraging TIF revenue (see section below) for public improvements described in the plan. Construction began in October 2019 and is expected to be completed by the end of 2020.
Historic Resources Survey
In May 2019 the City of Manhattan was awarded a $29,500 grant from the State of Kansas Historic Preservation Office via the National Parks Service to conduct a historic resources survey of the Aggieville area. The survey will determine if any buildings in the area are eligible for the State or National Register of Historic Places. Buildings listed on either register have special protections and are eligible for grants and tax credits. The survey is part of the ACV plan's vision to generally preserve the historic buildings in Aggieville along Moro Street and give property owners information to determine if they can nominate their properties. The survey will begin in Fall 2019 and conclude by Fall 2020.
Past Projects and Initiatives
Below, you'll find a history of completed projects and initiatives relating to the implementation of the Aggieville Community Vision plan.
Spring 2019: Delta Sigma Phi Historic Designation
The Delta Sigma Phi Fraternity, located at the northwest corner of 11th and Fremont was listed on the Register of Historic Kansas Places on May 4th, 2019. The building was constructed in 1907 as a YMCA and hosted Kansas State Agricultural College’s first basketball game. It later became St. Mary’s Hospital. The Delta Sigma Phi fraternity purchased the building in 1955. Ownership has been maintained by the fraternity ever since. The building is listed as an excellent example of both the twentieth century revival style and the mid-century modern style in Manhattan. Preserving this building is a priority in the ACV plan.
Spring 2019: Phase II Zoning Amendments
Changes related to increased building heights, building design, and reduced parking requirements in Aggieville's Zoning (C-3) were adopted by the City Commission in March 2019. See City Zoning Regulations. These changes will unlock private redevelopment potential on the edges of Aggieville along Laramie and Bluemont primarily by allowing buildings up to five stories tall. These redevelopments will ultimately support the vision for Aggieville as a vibrant urban district.
Winter 2018/2019: Streetscape & Triangle Park Design
In Summer 2018 we kicked off the streetscape and Triangle Park design phase of the plan. It included public visioning sessions, design charrettes, surveys, and focus groups to close in on a design concept to improve the streets, sidewalks, landscaping, traffic circulation, and pedestrian experience in Aggieville. Plan concepts were accepted by the Commission in early 2019. See Volume I and Volume II of the Concept Plan.
Fall 2018: Changes to Parking Limits
New parking limits went into effect fall 2018. The changes will add parking capacity to the district area while the Aggieville Hotel parking garage is under construction.
Summer 2018: 12b Redevelopment
In June 2017, land on the north side of the 1100 block of Bluemont Avenue was rezoned to allow for the construction of the 37-unit apartment building, 12b. This was the first major private redevelopment project following the adoption of the Aggieville Community Vision Plan, which further enhances the Bluemont Avenue Corridor as a high-density urban edge of Aggieville and provides additional housing options in the Aggieville area. The project was completed in August 2018.
Winter 2017/2018: Parking and Infrastructure Assessment
The City partnered with Olsson Associates and Walker Consultants to determine future parking demand based on the redevelopment envisioned in the Aggieville Community Vision Plan, and how that demand might be met through multi-level parking garages. Capacity and potential constrains on infrastructure, including water, sewer, and storm-water due to redevelopment were also assessed. The final report provides cost estimates for various scenarios so policies for infrastructure provision, public–private partnerships, and parking management strategies may be implemented.
Fall 2017: Property Tax Analysis
The Aggieville Community Vision is likely to require a public funding source to finance public improvements like multi-story parking garages, landscaping, and street amenities. One possible financing tool is “tax increment financing”. When a TIF district is created, the City establishes a base valuation of the district. The district continues to provide property tax revenue to the City, County, USD 383 and State at that level for the next 20 years, demonstrated in the graph below. The City then captures the increase above the base in tax revenue resulting from rising property value in the future years. This is not a new tax or additional fee, it is a result of growth and increased valuations due to development and increases in land values. The City then captures and invests that money directly back into the district in the form of public improvements. Those public improvements attract more private development and reinvestment, which in turn increases the value of property in the district that the city can again capture and invest back in the district- and the process repeats itself. This is the same mechanism the City used to finance improvements Downtown over the last 10 years.
How feasible is that for Aggieville? Looking at the current picture of citywide local property tax being generated, Aggieville and the downtown are already the most efficient property tax generators per square foot in the city (see map below). In fact, three of the top five most efficient generators in Manhattan are in Aggieville and 98 of the top 100 are either in Downtown or Aggieville. Thus reinvestment through area-based financing in these areas yields great potential for improvements.
The Aggieville Community Vision plan calls for substantial redevelopment of land currently locked up in surface parking and low-density development that could be redeveloped to substantially increase property value of the district, making Aggieville more vibrant and commercially viable.
Spring 2017: Phase I Zoning Amendments
The C-3 zoning district regulations were amended following the adoption of the ACV plan in spring 2017. These changes discourage additional highway and suburban strip-style development by prohibiting future drive-through establishments and requiring any provided parking to be placed behind buildings. See Manhattan Zoning Regulations. These changes will encourage more development in the future that emphasizes an environment centered around the pedestrian experience of Aggieville as a walkable urban center.
Spring 2017: Aggieville Community Vision Plan Adoption
The plan document was adopted by the City Commission via Ordinance no. 7280 on April 18, 2017. See top of page for document.
Fall 2016: The State of the Ville Report
The “State of the Ville” is a compilation of background information supplementing the Aggieville Community Vision Plan document. It established the conditions and trends from recent years on a range of factors shaping Aggieville. The report creates a dialogue of the issues and challenges within the district while helping to identify opportunities throughout the planning process based on analysis of observed data, informational mapping, and analyzed community input. The Aggieville Community Vision Plan responds to the findings in the State of the Ville report.
Spring 2016: The Community Survey
The Aggieville Community Vision Survey was completed in May 2016. It yielded more than 4,200 responses from college students, permanent residents, business owners, military members, and K-State alumni who through the survey were able to communicate their vision for the future of Aggieville. The collected data was compiled and analyzed in the State of the Ville Report. See the full survey results.
Main themes centered around:
- Parking capacity
- Pedestrian improvements
- Increased sidewalk amenities
- Improved safety and security
- Diversity of business
- History and cultural activity
- Improvements to Triangle Park
- Redevelopment opportunities