Saturday, October 22, 2016

UPDATE. The Towering Isthmus: Another look at Ovation 309

Sunlit on Saturday, October 22, 2016

Ovation 309 on Facebook

Other "Towering Isthmus" posts:
"Oh, the sun shines bright on my hubbA hubBa home...".  (10/15/2016)
'Boutique' just means you can't afford to stay there.  (10/15/2016)
UPDATE.  Anchor Bank Capitol Square development.  (9/16/2016)
UPDATE.  Uncommon, the final shot.  (9/16/2016)
UPDATE.  Capitol's Edge Apartments, the final shots.  (9/16/2016)
Another development starts to rise along East Washington Avenue.  (8/23/2016)
UPDATE. The Towering Isthmus, Anchor Bank Capitol Square development.  (8/9/2016)
AC Hotel Madison at East Washington & North Webster (view from Capitol observation deck).  (7/4/2016) 
UPDATE. The Towering Isthmus: hubBa with cranes wingspan.  (7/4/2016)
Video UPDATE. The Towering Isthmus: AC Hotel Madison at East Washington & North Webster,  (6/14/2016)
UPDATE. The Towering Isthmus: Anchor Bank project's big, deep hole.  (5/5/2016)
UPDATE: The Towering Isthmus: Uncommon eyesore.  (5/5/2016)
UPDATE:  The Lux on West Johnson Street.  (1/15/2016)
UPDATE:  Capitol's Edge Apartments.  (1/15/2016)
UPDATE:  9 more stories to go.  (9/26/2015)
670,000 square foot development risin' on the 800 block of East Washington.  (4/19/2015)
Sleeping and entertainment destination to rise in the middle of this photo.  (1/11/2015)
The Towering Isthmus: A behemoth hogs the skyline from Bascom Hill.  (12/4/2014)
Cranes at dusk.  (12/11/2014)
UPDATE: The Towering Isthmus: The Towers of Porta Bella.  (11/23/2013)
The Hub, the new hulk in town.  (11/16/2014)
North Bedford Street Project Still in the Proposal Stage.  (11/11/2014)
Coming soon: Another chapter in The Towering Isthmus Saga? (9/19/2014)
Blue Velvet.  (9/10/2014)
The New Edgewater Hotel gets ready for its fireworks celebration.  (9/10/2014)
Among the first wave of towers on the Isthmus.  (9/9/2014)
For those of you who haven't stood at the intersection of West Gilman and State Street in Madison Wisconsin lately.  (9/9/2014)
A tree grows on West Gilman Street.  (9/9/2014)
Nobly or otherwise, this is no longer the question.  (9/8/2014)
Deconstruction complete at 17, 19, 25 North Webster and 201 East Mifflin Streets.  (9/7/2014)
The towering isthmus (left to right).  (8/27/2014)
The Towering Isthmus (and the 3 cranes): For folks who can afford the view.  (7/22/2014)
That Was Then, This is Now: The 400 Block of West Gilman.  (7/18/2014)
New housing rising.  (5/8/2014)
Cranes over Porta Bella.  (4/22/2014)

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Fire reported on 13th floor of Ovation Apartments.  (Wisconsin State Journal, 7/12/2015)

Very superstitious.
The 14-story Ovation project, completed last year, includes 248 luxury apartments and 23,000 square feet of office space, including the Madison Fire Department's administration offices.

Photos by Retiring Guy taken on Friday, June 19, 2015.

From the 300 block of West Dayton Street

From the intersection of West Dayton and North Henry Streets

From the Overture parking ramp.  (Renovations are underway at Madison's Fire Station 1 and are expected to be completed by November of this year.)

Original post begins here.

A streetscape and skyline game-changer.  Ovation 309.

At the intersection of North Broom and West Johnson, looking toward State Street.

One of a variety of floor plans available.


Photos by Retiring Guy.

UPDATE: View of new DOT building construction from reserved executive parking spaces

Wisconsin Department of Administration State Building Program

Photo by Retiring Guy

10/3/2016 update, " Gray cloud looms over new DOT building, which, in turn, looms over University Avenue", starts here.

9/12/2016 update, "New DOT building in Madison is looming large", starts here.

9/2/2016 update, "New DOT building in Madison with rabbit ears", starts here.

With new Hill Farms building to open in 2018, state preparing to consolidate Madison offices.  (Wisconsin State Journal, 6/13/2016)
The plan reduces by 15 the number of state leases in privately owned buildings scattered throughout Madison, saving taxpayers more than $3 million a year in rent, maintenance and energy costs, according to the Department of Administration. 
In moving and consolidating 29 offices, the state will occupy 86,000 less square feet of office space. It also will reduce its leased office space by 178,637 square feet — about 17 percent of its total leased space in Madison, excluding the university. That includes nearly 103,422 square feet Downtown.

8/5/2016 update starts here.

From across Sheboygan Avenue.

From the parking lot on the Segoe Road side of the parcel.

The obligatory video update.

7/19/2016.  Even more progress on the parking ramp.

6/24/2016.  Further progress on the parking ramp.

June 9, 2016.  Quite a bit of construction progress in less than a month.

May 19, 2016, update starts here.

It's been 2 weeks since my previous visit.


May 3, 2016.  Latest video installment shows a week's worth of progress.


4/25/2015 update starts here.

Walls rising above ground.


The foundation walls are going up.  (The shadow of the current DOT building looms over the scene.)


2/16/2016 update, "Construction of new state office building underway at Hill Farms", begins here.,

Rendering:  WI Department of Administration

Finance committee gives final OK to new Hill Farms state office building.  (Wisconsin State Journal, 10/16/2015)
The Legislature’s Joint Finance Committee approved the sale of 13.9 acres of the Hill Farms site between Sheboygan and University avenues and 4.4 acres at 801 W. Badger Road, both of which would be developed privately as part of a master agreement with developer Smith Gilbane. The committee voted 14-1 with one member absent. Sen. Leah Vukmir, R-Wauwatosa, cast the lone no vote.

Project specifics:
  • Cost:  $186,000,000
    • $150,000,000 office building
    • $  36,000,000 parking ramp
  • Size:  9-story office building encompassing 600,000 square feet

The current, 57-year-old Hill Farms building houses the Department of Transportation.

All photos by Retiring Guy

A view from across Sheboygan Avenue

At this point in the construction timeline, excavation is underway.

The original 7/10/2014 post begins here.

State lists properties that are good prospects to sell.  (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 7/1/2014)

What's under considerationExcess acreage near the Department of Transportation's headquarters, which sits on prime commercial real estate in Madison.

Which excess acreage?

Along University Avenue?

Not likely, as there is no direct access from University.

Off Sheboygan Avenue, west of the DOT building?

Visitor parking.  Not that it couldn't be relocated.

Along Segoe Road?

If I were a developer, this would be my choice.  It's closest to Hilldale Shopping Center. And the parking lot appears to be underused.

Other State Buildings for Sale posts:
The Knapp House.  (7/2/2014)
Wiscraft Industries.  (7/4/2014)
Northern Wisconsin Center.  (7/6/2014)
Ethan Allen School.  (7/7/2014)
Badger Road State Office Building.  (7/8/2014)

Apartment construction UPDATE: Abandoned volleyball court and Meadow Ridge Middleton

Meadow Ridge Middleton

Photo by Retiring Guy

10/10/2016 update, "Framing up to fourth (uppermost) floor at former Bowling Green site in Middleton", starts here.

Photos by Retiring Guy

9/1/2016 update, "Framing up to third floor at former Bowling Green site in Middleton", starts here.

Looking across an abandoned softball field.

8/5/2016 update, " Weed hill not permanent feature at former Bowling Green site in Middleton", starts here.

July 9, 2016

All photos by Retiring Guy

June 18, 2016.

From the Laura Lane (Beltline) side of the property.

From the Parmenter Street side.

May 16, 2016.  The site is located between Parmenter Street and the Beltline.

Photos and video by Retiring Guy


April 29, 2016 update starts here.

Original 5/23/2015 post, "New Look Planned for This Lisa Lane Location", starts here.

The site of the former Bowling Green on Lisa Lane in Middleton is being considered for the construction of a 4-story, 95-unit, multi-family apartment building.

The Middleton Plan Commission is holding a public hearing on Tuesday, June 9, 2015, at 7:05 p.m.

Related article:
The 11th Frame: Bowling Green in Middleton to close.  (, 8/18/2011)
The declining number of league bowlers perhaps made this inevitable, and Bowling Green is not the only local center to close in recent years — Hare's Towne Bowl, Verona Bowl, and Classic Lanes (Burr Oaks Bowl) all have closed in recent year.

UPDATE. The end of Pyare Square: "An underperforming asset needs a performing partner"

The Lodge at Walnut Grove/The Lodge 2

10/3/2016 update," The end of Pyare Square", starts here.

9/2/2016 update, "Pyare Square just about down to rubble", starts here.

Photos by Retiring Guy

Pyare Square holds its place in history.  (Wisconsin State Journal, 9/2/2016)
Anyway, during its first decade, Pyare Square served as the DNR’s state headquarters. The DNR then moved its offices to downtown Madison, and has since occupied a building as unique as a four-drawer filing cabinet. That’s OK. At least the DNR’s law-enforcement folks haven’t compelled me to appear there in person.

8/26/2016 update, " Getting down to the core of Pyare Square", start here.

Photo by Retiring Guy
(as are the videos and all the rest of the photos)

8/23/2016 update, "Working overtime, duskily, at Pyare Square demolition", starts here.

Pyare Square slowly disappears from Shorewood Hills landscape.  (Capital Times, 8/20/2016)
You'll find 2 of my videos accompanying this article.

8/19/2016 update, "Pyare Square down to skeletal halfsies", starts here.

8/14/2016.  Down to the 11th floor.

(7/26/2016 update.)  Pyare Square Building being slowly demolished after 47 years of prominence on West Side.  (Wisconsin State Journal, 7/20/2016)

All photos by Retiring Guy

Completed in 1969.  Original tenant:  Wisconsin Department of  Natural Resources.

A 2008 proposal to convert the building to condominiums proved to be a case of bad timing as far as the housing market was concerned.

7/15/2016 update, " The White Building becoming shell of former self, soon to be nothing at all", start here.

Photos by Retiring Guy

From the March 2016 Shorewood Hill Village Bulletin:

Looks like it's not completely a top-down demolition.

Original 7/2/2016 post, Say goodbye to The White Building, a.k.a. Pyare Square', starts here.

Pretty soon I won't have to use the tree as a cover-up.

 All photos by Retiring Guy

Pyare Square is in the procees of being torn down, and an apartment complex is taking its place.

The video version.

When my wife and I first moved to the area, there used to be a restaurant in the section behind the tower.  We went there just once, for the fish fry, and it was terrible.

Based on what I heard the other day, we won't be seeing this view much longer.   (I have yet to see anything in print about the project, however.)

Related post:
"The White Building": What's Going to Happen to Pyare Square?  (9/16/2014)