9 February 2008
Missing the point
Alex Patel, owner of the Quality Inn on East Reno near MLK, would like to build a small (95-room) Holiday Inn Express on the northeast corner of Main and Oklahoma, on the old Steffen's Ice Cream site in Bricktown.
I have to admire Patel's pitch:
"There is in place now the new Hampton Inn [opening later this year], the Renaissance, the Colcord, the Skirvin ... but we're trying to appeal to the group that can't afford $200 a night. We're looking at $80 to $100."
There's only one drawback that I can see:
The facade, designed by Quinn & Associates, includes brick and synthetic stucco.
Hello? This is Bricktown, folks. You don't sneak synthetic stucco into the mix. You want plasticky siding, you put it out on Memorial Road, where they don't notice that sort of thing.
Posted at 9:25 AM to City Scene
Synthetic stucco? I thought stucco was cheapest stuff in the world, but no, now we have imitation cheap stuff? What is the world coming to?
The technical term is "Exterior Insulation Finishing System" or EIFS. It combines a foam insulation layer with an exterior-surface layer, which saves a step and maybe some money.
It might look good, you know. When every damn building on the street is the same damn brick...it's a nuthouse. Or prison.
Or government hill in Capitol of Rhode Island. (can't imagine anything more negative architecturally).
In Chattanooga a cluster of similar-looking brick buildings is low-income housing.
A cluster of dissimilar-looking brick buildings, on the other hand, is pretty much ... Chattanooga.
Then again, this is Bricktown; that's its very raison d'être. (All the non-conforming construction has been banished to south of Reno Avenue, to a zone called Lower Bricktown.) And there is plenty of brick that doesn't qualify as The Same Damn; you just have to look for it. Easier to throw up prefab stuff, though.