Siegel Group Proposes to Enhance West Street Plaza, Fulton Park

by Mike Van Houten / Sep 7, 2014

As part of their redevelopment efforts for the Truckee Lane Building, located on First Street in downtown Reno, Siegel Group will be asking the council to acquire West Street Plaza and Fulton Park to improve them and make them more cohesive with their redevelopment plans for the building.

This will all go down Wednesday Sept 10 at noon in council chambers at One East First Street, in a special joint session meeting. Here is the packet with all the images you see below and then some, posted as a public document in preparation for next week's meeting.

Below are renderings of the plan for the building, the park and the plaza.

Let's take a look at them first, then I'll throw in my two cents. I'm eager to hear what you, the community, feels about this as well. Keep in mind these are just renderings, and are subject to change.

So let's start with a shot of what this area currently looks like:


Here's a few shots of the riverfront block after being modified by Siegel Group:

In looking at the renderings, it seems the main goal with modifying West Street Plaza is to give easier access to lower level tenants. With the current plaza, the only way to reach the lower tenants from First Street is to meander down a ramp walkway that borders landscaping and Java Jungle's patio, or use the stairs on the far side of the plaza closer to the retail complex that houses Riverside 12 movie theater, or go around to Roff Way.

In the site plan below, you can see that the primary stairs have been moved closer to the east of the building. It's hard to tell from the renderings, but it seems like there is also another set of stairs directly adjacent to the east side of the building, and the ramp walkway for handicap access has been moved over to the eastern side of the plaza, winding through a green turf area. There are also stairs on the far east side of the plaza adjacent to the movie theater complex.

(click image to enlarge details)

On the west side of the building, Siegel has plans to turn Fulton Park into a pet-friendly park from the cluttered mess it currently is. See the plan below.

With this concept, the direct access to the Riverwalk via Roff Way (the very short alley-like street just west of the building) would be re-aligned, a patio added to the west side of the Truckee Lane building, a meandering concrete walkway added to Fulton Park to give riverwalk access, plus turf added for the pets to play on, benches added, lighting, and the boulders relocated to the terminus of Roff Way along the riverwalk, for added landscaping and to make the trash enclosure less noticeable. I'm unsure if there will still be a direct way to access the riverwalk from First Street via the west side of the building, other than the meandering path through the pet park.

Also, the Truckee Lane building itself will of course be renovated as part of this plan. Here are a couple of renderings:

So that's the plan!

At first glance I like their plans for the plaza and Fulton park. I can't wait to hear more at the meeting on Wednesday. The only concern I have would be maintenance. Right now, the city does a great job maintaining West Street Plaza and Fulton Park. I would want the developer to adhere to the same standards or exceed them regarding landscaping maintenance/trash pick up etc, particularly with so much drought-tolerant landscaping being replaced with green turf. On the flip side, the city could use a break and get a release from a little bit of park maintenance for that area in a time when every dollar counts.

Aside from that, I think this reconfiguration better fits the renovation plans and makes the entire area more pedestrian friendly. It makes sense to give the lower floor, riverfront-level tenants better pedestrian access from first street. What are your thoughts? Should the city readily gives these properties up to help out Siegel Group's development plans?

Post your comments
  • September 7, 2014 - 7:29:59 PM

    If the city gives the property to the private developer, does that mean it is no longer public property? Are special events ever held in this location, and if so, would they now need to get approval by the property owner to be held there?

  • September 7, 2014 - 10:05:40 PM

    How much are they offering the city for this prime downtown real estate? They paid $2M+ for the Truckee Lane building on 0.2 acres. Surely the 0.55 acres they are asking for are worth a good fraction of that.

  • September 9, 2014 - 10:19:51 PM

    Will the current businesses be able to stay in business with the makeover? Or will the new building be unaffordable? Java jungle is the best coffee in Reno I would hate to see it go under due to new building structures!

  • September 11, 2014 - 11:47:14 AM

    So they ended up authorizing the staff to work on an agreement, but major stakeholders will be consulted (parks dept, neighbors, RAB) in crafting the deal. The Siegel Group didn't actually show up with a proposal, and the mayor said "transfer" was probably the (paraphrasing) "wrong wording" on the agenda item. The council members seem to have declined for the time being to let us know where they stand on the ownership of the plaza. The city should not sell or transfer interest in the plaza to any other party. If you agree, let the council know. That being said, the city should work with the developer on specific changes if those changes make sense, while the city retains ownership of the plaza.