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Winter Celebration on Pontiac Tr. Pastel painting by Laura Strowe.
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Friday November 26, 2021
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Downtown's New Buildings



After considering the building for a minute, Mike Quinn says, "Like University Towers [on South University], the architect attempted a classical revival facade-equally unsuccessfully, in my opinion. Tower Plaza [on William] tried the same thing, but yet somehow they were much more successful."

"From my point of view as an urban designer," says Roy Strickland, "density and concentration in the center of Ann Arbor is a good idea. Taller, denser buildings bring more life to the street and more ¬people, more safety, more commerce in general, and more retail in particular." Of Corner House itself, however, the best Strickland can say is "It's a mild-¬mannered background building."

Or, as John Mouat succinctly dismisses it over coffee at Cafe Zola, "Let's say that building is clean and simple and just leave it at that."

Unlovely as it is, Corner House has been successful enough that two similar student-targeted high-rises are currently under construction on opposite sides of the Diag. But until we showed them renderings, most of our architects couldn't picture either one. That's understandable: neither is scheduled to open until May 2009-though 4 Eleven Lofts, at Washington and Division, is closer to completion than Zaragon Place, the ten-story building that replaces the venerable Anberay Apartments on East University.

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