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The Daily Cardinal Est. 1892
Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Three companies present design proposals for 800 block of East Washington Avenue

Three different development companies presented separate design proposals for a future grocery store and commercial and residential complexes to be built on a currently vacant lot of the 800 block of East Washington Avenue to Madison city officials Thursday.

Representatives of development companies C.D. Smith Construction, T. Wall Enterprises and Gebhardt Development focused primarily on how their designs can enhance neighborhood friendliness.

Gebhardt Development representatives said their company is well suited to build in the area, given its recent work designing another development on the 700 block of East Washington Avenue.

The company wishes to continue its work through the 800 block with a design that concentrates on the social aspect of the area, according to Otto Gebhardt, president of Gebhardt Development.

“We want the design of the elements to create an interactive place,” Gebhardt said.

The proposal includes modern housing, bicycle and pedestrian accessibility as well as a Metcalfe’s Market grocery store.

According to Metcalfe’s Market owner Tim Metcalfe, a grocery store in this one-mile radius is necessary considering the population is approximately 22,000 people. Metcalfe compared it to the Hilldale area, which has a population nearly half that of the proposed area, but still has two full-service grocery stores.

The other two developers also recognized the need for a grocery store, but each proposed to collaborate with Fresh Madison Market.

C.D. Smith Construction presented plans for “social spaces” to entertain Madison residents, a bike repair shop and apartments in its multi-building proposal.

The layout would include accessibility from two main entrances that connect the buildings in a center court. According to C.D. Smith representatives, it would be a friendly environment to those biking or walking past with pets and hopefully an area that could host wine tastings or mini concert series.

T. Wall Enterprises also presented a multi-building idea, but proposed a unified area that would include residential retail and housing with an appearance more consistent with the neighborhood.

“I never try to make my developments stand out, I make them fit in,” said Terrance Wall, president of T. Wall Enterprises.

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However, community resident Sanford Dewitt said the companies needed to accommodate the neighborhood area even more.

“We don’t want to commodify this really cool neighborhood,” Dewitt said.

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