UPDATE: Convention Center Hotel creates…a dead urban street?

Friday's rendering of the Convention Center Hotel, set to be complete in 2015, paints a bleak picture for development on East Main.

Friday’s rendering of the Convention Center Hotel, set to be complete in 2015, paints a bleak picture for development on East Main. (PHOTO: The Davenport Hotel Collection)

Okay, so there are windows, I suppose. But other than that, newly-released renderings reveal that Walt Worthy’s Convention Center Hotel won’t do much to improve the pedestrian experience on East Main. While in the past, pedestrians walking on the north side of Main were forced for walk past several surface parking lots, now they will have to endure four floors of above-ground parking with minimal facade improvements and interaction with the built environment.

Had the parking for Convention Center Hotel been built underground or in a better configuration, this could have been an incredible opportunity to revitalize two streets instead of one, especially with re-development at the former Huppin’s Building and at the Bennett Block, both of which are in the midst of major remodels. Imagine streetfront retail or restaurants on this side of the building. The result would have been a more continuous string of restaurants and smart downtown retail all the way to Main Market and beyond. That would have provided an economic boost and a cultural boost. This in contrast with the Spokane Falls Boulevard-side of the building, which looks comparatively excellent for pedestrian interaction and space (see a photo after the break).

Instead, we are left with a mostly uninviting urban environment reminiscent of the currently-empty downtown EWU Center.

What do you think? Share your thoughts in the comments, on Twitter, on Facebook, and all over the web. We love to hear from you.

This side of the Convention Center Hotel looks great for pedestrian interaction. But what about the side on Main Street? (PHOTO: Davenport Hotel Collection)

This side, the Spokane Falls Boulevard-side of the Convention Center Hotel looks great for pedestrian interaction. But what about the side on Main Street? (PHOTO: Davenport Hotel Collection)

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3 thoughts on “UPDATE: Convention Center Hotel creates…a dead urban street?

  1. That’s disappointing. I was under the impression there was going to be retail along Main. Walt Worthy is developing a full block bordering four streets. It is of my humble opinion he is responsible for all four of those streets vitality and uphold Spokanes’ vision of a vibrant downtown. This location is important to this vision, and occupying an entire block with basically a long wall does not meet the standards citizens have for our developing downtown. Are there options for community members to have an influence on this issue?

    • I agree. He is definitely responsible for all four bordering streets. I think at this point, the best people to contact would be those involved with the Davenport Collection itself. Worthy himself. His representatives. They are going to be the ones most driven to make a change, but they’re only going to do it if the public demands it. The city at this point has approved everything as-designed.

  2. I heard one of the newer city planners talk at a Futurewise fundraiser around Christmas and he said the city had talked Worthy into moving retail from one of the north south streets to the W Main side and they had complied.

    Not sure if that has changed or if it just isn’t reflected in this rendering.

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