Proposal for a small neighborhood shopping center

Material Information

Proposal for a small neighborhood shopping center
Alternate title:
Solaris Square
Rea, Malcolm D
Publication Date:
Physical Description:
ii, 23, [26] leaves : illustrations (some color), maps, plans (some color, some folded) ; 28 cm


Subjects / Keywords:
Shopping centers -- Designs and plans -- Colorado -- Grand Junction ( lcsh )
Shopping centers ( fast )
Colorado -- Grand Junction ( fast )
Designs and plans. ( fast )
bibliography ( marcgt )
theses ( marcgt )
non-fiction ( marcgt )
Designs and plans ( fast )


Includes bibliographical references (leaf 23).
General Note:
Cover title: Solaris Square.
General Note:
Submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree, Master of Architecture, College of Design and Planning.
Statement of Responsibility:
Malcolm D. Rea.

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Colorado Denver
Holding Location:
Auraria Library
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
09431609 ( OCLC )
LD1190.A72 1980 .R42 ( lcc )

Full Text
Date Due
4 12-7

r i 1 1


Malcolm D. Rea Fall Semester, 1979 Thesis Preparation
University of Colorado at Denver

I. SITUATION...........................................1
II. ISSUES..............................................2
III. GOALS...............................................4
IV. PRELIMINARY PROGRAM ............................... 5
V. PRODUCT FOR MAY ....................................7
VI. ADVISORY COMMITTEE ................................ 7
VII. AREA DATA...........................................8
VIII. NEIGHBORHOOD.......................................10
IX. CLIMATE DATA.......................................11
X. ZONING AND CODE REQUIREMENTS.......................13
XI. SHOPPING CENTER DATA...............................17
MANAGERS OF SHOPPING CENTERS ................... 19
XIV. ECONOMIC DATA......................................22
XV. BIBLIOGRAPHY.....................................2 3

A client of the firm Milburn-Sparn owns .7 acres in Grand Junction with an existing 3.2 night spot. He has acquired some of the surrounding land and wishes to develop the site with a maximum budget determined by the borrowing power of his equity (between 1 and 1.3 million dollars). With the unused portion of the site constituting only 1.4 acres, the owner anticipates a two-story development to allow adequate space for parking facilities. He would prefer that both stories be retail or service oriented to maximize rents, but ways must be found to minimize the lack of appeal of second story shops in terms of both access and exposure. Otherwise, office space (which brings in lower rents) will have to go on the second floor. The owner and the project architect, Ski Milburn, have determined that the area of both floors shall be about 25,000 square feet.
The owner wishes the project to be energy efficient, to reduce energy and maintenance costs. One possibility is a solar atrium-mall, with the square footage for the mall being part of the 25,000 square foot total, though not part of the gross leasable area generating direct rent.
The owner is considering renovating the existing building with the same usage or a different one which may help attract day-time visitors to the center. A restaurant or store would be more complementary to the rest of the center, but parking considerations limit the possibilities.

A. The first issue to be dealt with is the usage of the second floor. If quality retail usage is to be achieved, accessibility and exposure must be increased, perhaps by using an entry between floors and lowering the ground floor. An anticipated soils report should have enough data on water table levels to help resolve this issue; because the site is located on an alluvial plain, it may be impractical to lower the ground floor without encountering water problems.
B. The second issue is energy efficiency. Because energy costs are rising 15 percent per year over and above the inflation rate, the owner feels that use of solar energy can cut long term heating and lighting costs while helping to convey a vital and positive public image. Energy conservation and passive solar features are to be considered, in terms
of both the individual spaces and the common areas. A solar atrium might serve as an enclosed mall and heat source, contributing to the quality of the space.Although it would not constitute part of the leasable area, it would save energy and furnish personality. Cost of the space has to be balanced against these factors.
C. Parking considerations are a key issue. With new construction on the site, the requirement for the current facility will be 170 parking spaces (based on a variance).
This would be more than the 125 spaces required by 25,000

square feet of rental area or the 104 spaces required by half retail, half office usage. The uses overlap, since one is by night, the other by day. However, if the current night spot were converted into a restaurant to help attract daytime activity to the center, requirements would not overlap and a maximum of 259 (125 + 134) spaces would be needed.
At 300 square feet of asphalt per space, this would not be possible, leaving only 8,000 square feet to be occupied by construction. A decision on whether or not to change the current usage will have to be largely based on parking requirements.
D. Treatment of the existing facility, already partially discussed, is another main issue. Visually and functionally, Suds 'n* Sounds should be integrated with the center. Remodeling and usage change are both available means.
E. A fifth issue is raised by the owner's wish to bring a pleasant atmosphere to the strip dominated by department store monoliths set in asphalt. The landscaping of exterior spaces, parking in particular, is important in creating a positive response to the site. A sense of vitality and of personality should set the project off from the surrounding area.
F. An attempt will be made to stay within the owner's budget, although he may revise it upwards. Since the end product is the design of a profit-seeking enterprise, that client goal is largely dependent on initial building and maintenance costs. Other factors being equal, economics will
determine choices.

1. To design about 25,000 square feet of commercial space, integrated functionally and aesthetically with an existing 6,000 square foot structure.
2. To integrate the existing building into the project by a combination of renovation and/or change of usage.
3. To make both facilities serve their "highest and best use" within the limits permitted by zoning and code.
4. To stay close to budget.
5. To achieve a vital and pleasant atmosphere.
6. To achieve energy efficiency through energy conservation and passive solar application.

- 25,000 square feet of retail and service on two floors.
This figure includes bathrooms, enclosed mall, mechanical and service areas.
- 6,000 square feet of existing building space to be inte-
grated into the project through renovation and/or usage changes.
- 2,000 square feet of cafeteria, about 400 square feet
of which will serve as kitchen.
- an indoor atrium 20 feet wide on the ground floor with
8 feet wide walkways on the second level. Overall atrium width will be around 40 feet.
- parking for 170 cars.
- delivery for at least one 35 foot truck.
- approximately 150 square feet of office space.
- one elevator (hydrolic).

Design Presentation Drawings, Model, and Booklet
Schedule: Completion of Programming
Schematic Design Design Development Presentation Requirements Presentation
Ski Milburn, Architect D. C. Holder, Engineer
Chester Nagle, Architect

Grand Junction, located at the junction of the Gunnison and Colorado Rivers, is the county seat of Mesa County and the largest population center in western Colorado. Interstate 70 connects it to Denver and (soon) to Salt Lake City.
Mountain ranges lie to the south and east, desert to the north and west. It is tableland and mountain valley country. Grand Mesa, the largest flattop mountain of its height in the world, is located several miles to the east with Powder Horn, a local ski area. There is ample outdoor recreation activity in the vicinity.
Many area businesses are involved in locating and developing natural resources from uranium ore and coal to oil shale. East and south of Grand Junction are the West Elk Mountain Coal Fields with an estimated 100 to 250 billion tons; the scale of this mining has recently accelerated.
Oil shale extraction processes are being sought by several major oil companies and the research has brought new business to the area. If the energy crises precipitates development of the trillions of tons of oil shale in the area, the impact will be enormous.
New industry is coming into the area, including a Coors Porcelain Plant and a Fiberboard Corporation Plant. Population growth has been accelerating with a jump from 53,600 to almost 70,000 in two years; it is expected to reach 100,000

in about five years. Employment and wage levels are rising The city is growing steadily, as is the trade area surrounding it. Demand for the area's natural resources is likely to accelerate causing population growth, rising employment and economic expansion. It is a good area for new retail business ventures.

The neighborhood surrounding the site is a commercial strip along North Avenue with large department stores, fast food chain stores, gas stations and branch banks. The busiest traffic route in Grand Junction, North Avenue's peak traffic load ranks second in the state to that of Colfax Avenue in Denver, ensuring good exposure to the sight.
Access is through an intersection with a traffic light and turn lanes in each direction. The high traffic has recently enabled North Avenue total sales volume to double that of the central business district.
Mesa College lies several miles to the west. Its 3,500 students are active clientele for the Suds 'n' Sounds business. The neighborhood has been in transition from residential and light commercial to heavy commercial, with accompanying land value increases and construction activity. The neighborhood is improving.

Elevation: 4,819'
Latitude: N 39 07'
Mean Annual Temperature: 52.5
Design Temperature: Winter--ll F
Summer94 Dry Bulb --63 Wet Bulb
Total Annual Degree Days: Heating5605
Daily Temperature Swing: Winter27.3 F
Summer29.6 F
Mean % of Sunshine Annually: 69%
Mean Daily Solar Radiation (Langleys): 456 Wind: Mean Speed: 8.5 mph
Prevailing Direction: ESE Mean Total Annual Precipitation: 8.4"
Mean Total Annual Snowfall: 34"
Located in a protective large mountain valley, Grand Junction has few sudden and severe weather changes. Valley breezes moderate the weather, prolonging the growing season to 191 days. The temperature climate reduces the need for mechanical equipment.
The mountains on all sides wring the moisture out of the atmosphere before it gets to Grand Junction. The area is quite arrid, with building materials tending to dry out.

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' far f n i xi vrdrd ai other slits In the l.ialltv a* f 1 1 v REFERENCE NOTES APPLYING TO TABLES APPEAR ON THE PAGE FOLl OWINfi I AST TARi F

A third of the winters have no temperature readings below zero, 23 being the record low. Cold weather sometimes gets trapped in the valley, but winds are usually light during the coldest weather (mean speed in January is only 5.5 mph). While the prevailing wind is from the east-southeast, the strongest winds come from the south, southwest, west and northwest.
There is an average of 69% of possible sunshine, with a high degree of gain in all seasons. Time lag materials are valuable for passive solar use to provide heating at night and to protect against overheating during the daythe main problem.
At 4 foot depths, the soil temperature at 5 p.m. swings from 30.2 in January to 80.5 in July. Ground insulation will help to prevent both heat loss and heat gain.

Project: Shopping Center Development
Location: 28% & North Ave., Grand Junction, Colorado
Applicable Zoning Ordinance: City of Grand Junction Zoning
Applicable Building Code: U.B.C.
Zoning Classification: C-l, Light Commercial
Permitted uses include: Gas Station, Repair Shop,
Retail Store, Office, Restaurant, Limited Service Business (like a Branch Bank), Personal Service Business (Beauty Shop, Self-Service Laundry, Pharmacy) and Amusement Business (Night Club or Pool Arcade). No Hard Liquor (without special permit).
Floor Area Ratio/Building Square Footage Limits:
Type I Construction - Unlimited
Type II, III & IV Construction 13,500 Ft.2/floor for A-2
18,000 " " " B-2
Type V Construction A-2 not permitted
B-2 - 8,000 Ft.2/floor
Building Height Limit: 65 feet; 4 story limit on office and retail, 2 story on restaurant and tavern Minimum Lot Size Requirements: None Off Street Parking Requirements:
Restaurant 1 space/3 occupant load 15 sq. feet/occupant
Night Club or Bar 1 space/2 occupant load 15 sq. feet/occupant
Office 1 space/300 ft le'asable space

Retail 1 space/200 square feet of sales area (includes employee parking)
A minimum of 5% of parking area must be used for landscaping.
Building set-backs: 55' from main street
45' from secondary street 35' from collector street 25' from other street 0' from side lot
Screening: No trees within 1+8' of North Avenue center line
Fire Zone Classification: II Occupancy Classification:
"B-2" for retail, office and restaurant "A-2.1" for night spot if occupancy exceeds 300.
"A-3" if occupancy is less than 300 Contruction Type:
Occupancy Separation Requirements:
No mixed occupancy for restaurant if its occupancy 100
Otherwise, 1 HR separation Exterior Wall Fire Ratings:
2 HR if <5' from another building 1 HR elsewhere
Exterior Wall Openings: None if < 5'
Fire Ratings: 1 HR, all parts. Arcade connecting building and used as passageway doesn't make one building of two as long as 1 HR rating in arcade (Sec. 509).

Max. Floor Area Unsprinklered: See Zoning
(Sec. 506) Sprinklered: Doubles above
Max. Height Unsprinklered: See Zoning
(Sec. 505) Sprinklered: One Story More
Number of Exits Required:
Ground floor: Office, need 2 if occupant load >30.
Retail, need 2 if occupant load >50.
Bar & Restaurant, need 2 if occupant load is > 50.
In floors above first:
If occupant load > 10 need 2 exits
If occupant load > 500 need 3 exits
If occupant load ^> 1000 need 4 exits
for that floor
, p
Retail: Basement 20 ft. /occupant
Ground Floor 30 ft.^/occupant
Above 50 ft. /occupant
p _
Restaurant and Bar: 15 ft. /occupant Office: 100 ft.^/occupant
Number of Stairs Required: See exit requirements above
first floor
Door Width Requirements: 3 minimum, I4.* maximum
Stair Width Requirements: 44" if occupancy 50
36" minimum
Corridor Width: 44' minimum
Stairway Landing: As deep as stair is wide. 12' vertical
is maximum between landings.

Travel Distance/Dead End Corridor:
150' max., 200' if sprinklered Dead end max. 20', 50' if sprinklered Door Swing: 90 clear swing, direction of exit Stair and Balcony Railing Requirements: 30" to 34" above stair nose. 42" min. for balcony Ramp Requirements: 1:10 max. slope at ground levelsame width min. as stair.
Need 5' landing at top
6' landing at bottom if slope < 1:1$, not necessary Riser/Tread Limits:
Riser max. >lh", tread min. '*10"
Vertical Openings: No limits if two stories
Exit Lighting: Must be illuminated when building is occupied Ceiling Height Minimums: 7'6", in corridors 7'0"
Mezzanine Restrictions: Max. area = 1/3 of floor below Furnace & Boiler Room: 1 HR Fire Rating
Sprinkler: Yes if any floop area exceeds 12,000 square feet
or if total floor area exceeds 24,000 square feet Dry Standpipe Requirements: Only necessary if building
is over 1; floors
Wet Standpipe Requirements: Only necessary if area per floor exceeds
20,000 square feet
Toilet Room Fixture Requirements:
Stall: 2'8" wide, 2' door, 4'8" long
Stall (Handicapped); 3' wide, 2'8" door, 4'8" long Need separate facilities for each sex when number of employees in a building area ;> 4. At least one water closet for every portion of building.

Any shopping area with less than 50,000 ft. is considered a small neighborhood center. Shopping centers are generally laid out on a modular basis so that store
sizes can be adjustable, expanding to a second or third
module. The module itself may vary from 600 ft. to 1500 ft.2, and its depth will vary from 50 to 80 feet.
Many shopping centers are planned around an "anchor", which may receive cheaper rent to attract it into an area where it is expected to draw shoppers for other stores; usually a supermarket or a large department store will serve this function, but in a small center, a clothing store or a restaurant will suffice.
Most shopping center interiors are left unfinished, with the shell and suspended ceiling, plumbing and electrical in place. The floor will often be finished. Usually tenants are found first and partitions put in later based on the tenant's need.
Cars have to get close to the stores for ease of access. Though parking requirements often determine the size of a shopping area, many shopping centers put in a good deal more parking than the code requires.
Enclosed malls are rarely economically viable in small shopping areas (less than 100,000 ft.2). They are expensive since they must be finished by the owner (unlike leasable

area) but they bring in no rent, unless kiosques or small booths are placed in them.
Kiosques require heavy foot traffic and are questionable for a small shopping area served by vehicle rather than pedestrian traffic.
Theme centers sometimes work well in small shoppettes. The stores should sell complementary, non-competing products. A home improvement center, for example, might feature a paint store, furniture or light fixture shops, with a hardware store "anchor".
Maintenance needs should be minimized, especially snow removal, which often has to be done before stores can be opened. Flower beds and lighting fixtures which are easily damaged are to be avoided.
Office space works well on a second floor, but it generates less rent than does retail space. The latter, however, does not work well on a second floor unless demand is very high. With few exceptions, national chain stores will not rent space on a second floor.

MANAGERS OF SHOPPING CENTERS (Sources for Most of Foregoing Data)
1. Steve Clausing at Rose-Webster Real Estate
A. Need bays 50' to 70' deep or there will be too few tenants.
B. Build on flexible bay or module basis, 1200 to 1800 sq. ft.
C. Get tenants before partitions go in.
D. Enclosed mall not profitable unless center is bigger than 100,000 ft.2
E. Cars have to get close to shopping areaneed lots of parking.
F. Need easy snow removal, no fixtures that can be damaged easily.
G. Offices fine on second floor, but not retail. High risk, only good if high demand in area. National tenant won't take second floor.
H. Clothing or fashion stores are very good tenants; can serve as "anchor" like a good restaurant for a small shopping area.
I. Other good tenants: flower shop, sporting goods, pet store, shoe store, card or gift shop, stereo & hi-fi center.

2. Mrs. Purvis at Reynolds & Co.
A. A store under 1000 sq. ft. is not useful.
B. Low rent for anchor stores (strong draws or attractions); higher rent per sq. ft. for small stores.
3. Ted Denton at Robert Inman & Associates
A. Service tenants are very good for small centers.
B. Two story retail is risky.
4. Robert Klausner of Perl-Mack Co.
A. Need lots of foot traffic for kiosques, not good for small center.
B. A theme center is sometimes good in small cluster All home improvement shops, or food or imports theme.
5. Betty at Palmer Gardens Management
A. Anchor critical
B. Need lots of display area seen through glass
C. Need busy thoroughfare
6. Paul Saporito of Williams, Hite Associates (Architect and Developer)
A. Can overlap parking usage (day vs. night use).
B. No finish in interiors at least half of the time.
Note: Many sources repeated data; I placed a point with the
source who most emphasized it or best articulated it.

Sq. footage 6,187 Building 2 years old Concrete block on south and east Slump block and stucco on north and west Built-up roof w/ Mansard facade Four heating and cooling packages, each 120,000 BTU heating 5 tons refrigeration Extra 5 ton air conditioner Improvements: Sound system $25,000
Volleyball area $16,500 Parking $16,500
Parking: 57 spaces on asphalt, north side of building
Present facility utilizes 30,800 ft. but not the other 61,488 ft.2 Total site: 92,288 ft.2
4 restrooms, office, small kitchen w/ exhaust fan and built-in fire extinguisher. Walk-in cooler. Volleyball area: 70' x 70'^ w/ 10' fence Electricity, natural gas, telephone, water and sewer run on site and are in use.
Facility has strobe and colored lighting inside;
wooden booths & tables, dark colors, earth tones; pin ball machines, pool tables

Appraised value of the property as of October 10, 1979 $877,000
$1,008,000 in October 1979 (at 15% apprec.) Current Maximum Project Budget $1,300,000 Income Generated (1978)
$ 8.00/ft.2
.44/ft.2 Sound System
.40/ft.2 Volleyball
.41/ft.2 Games
1.38/ft.2 Equipment
Total $72 ,571 (based on 7,827 ft.2)
Net income/capitalization rate = 72,571/.115 = $877,000 Cost per square foot:
$1,300,000/25,000 sq. ft. = $52/square foot At current interest and capitalization rates, rents of approximately $10/square foot would have to be obtained.
Lease terms: Landlord is to provide concrete floor slab,
drop ceiling, taped and sanded drywall, lighting, ventilation, heating, cooling and restrooms .

1979 Shopping Center DirectoryThe West, National Research Bureau.
Dollars & Cents of Shopping Centers, Urban Land Institute.
Land Development Game Seminar, The MGI Management Institute, New York.
Baker, Geoffrey H., Shopping Centers, 1951.
Lion, Edgar, Shopping Centers, 1976.
Slty of Grand Junction Zoning Ordinance, 1977.
Uniform Building Code, 1979.
An Appraisal of Suds 'n' Sounds, James P. Biber, Robert D. Stevens.
A Commercial Project for: Bruce Troy, 2825 North Avenue, Grand Junction, Colorado, Milburn & Sparn, Energy Architects, Inc., 1979.
Solaris Square, Milburn and Sparn, Energy Architects,
Inc., 1979.

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Malcolm D. Rea
Spring Semester, 1980
Thesis Project
University of Colorado at Denver

The first consideration in determining the design outcome was the requirement for parking: because full use of the property was necessitated, some parking would have to be located at each end of the lot; therefore, an atrium running in a north-south direction would connect the parking areas. (This alignment maximized solar efficiency as well.) Furthermore, the atrium had to be nearly straight to minimize its length and thus maximize the gross leasable area. This would also enable a visitor to scan all the shop frontages upon entry. The atrium did not have to run the full length of the building on the second floor.
The optimum bay depth was the second major consideration in design.
A fifty foot minimum depth is recommended by most authorities on shopping centers. A specialty shoppette can go to less, but I wished to keep the flexibility to have ample non-specialty tenants as well. Therefore, I settled on a fifty foot bay depth for the ground floor; this depth in turn determined that there would be a basic symmetry about the atrium, since the required width just fits on the lot with five or six feet to spare. Offsetting the bays enough to obtain asymmetry was not possible given a minimum bay depth of fifty feet.
Shallower bay variation for small tenants was obtained by putting bathrooms, elevator, office and kitchen space to the rear of a bay with the valuable atrium frontage remaining uncluttered. To make similar space on the other side, storage facilities for large tenants would be arranged behind the stores of smaller tenants.
Delivery would be to the south side in a screened-off area (capable of serving a 45 foot truck) located between the new building and the old. Access to the old building would be by ramp; access to the new building wou be by stair or elevator on the second floor. A second delivery area would accomodate non-elevator delivery to the east side of the new building. Only second floor elevator delivery to the east bay would require the crossing of the atrium by service people.

The atrium would be entered between floors on the north side to enhance second floor visibility and accessibility. However, the southern entry would be at ground level, six feet lower, to aid delivery and handicap access. A four foot differential in elevation across the property would be complemented by berming to accomplish this change of level.
Brick paving would line the atrium and be broken up by a water course trickling over rocks. Running through planters containing ferns, ficus trees and papyrus, the water would run to a small pool beneath the southern stairs where it would be pumped back to the north side.
Approximately 50% of the heating load would be obtained from passive solar heating of this brick atrium. The sawtooth window bays above the atrium would have movable louvers made of coated styrofoam and copper. The louvers would (1) reradiate heat and insulate during winter nights, (2) admit sun to the brick surface during heating mode, or (3) control the amount and tone of light (reflecting off of the copper to the ceiling). The louvers would be placed between two sheets of glass separated by eight inches and would be operated by honeywell motors connected to thermostats and solar cells for automatic control. The north and south end windows (as well as those of the cafeteria) have smoked glass to control glare, louvers (as described above), and shading by colored canvas strips which would be rolled out on cables along the tops of the parapet walls on each side. A heat pump would be created between the layers of glass on the two southern exposure window areas, with the heat vented in summer and recirculated below the atrium slab in winter in the same fashion as the heat from the sawtooth areas. The area below the atrium floor would be a large insulated air cavity between grade beams; heat could be distributed there to warm the concrete and brick instead of being allowed to rise directly to the heated areas again. This would reduce the amount of air to be circulated by the fans.
The walkways over the atrium would extend low over both door areas to create a sense of entry, followed by an expansive pull into the shopping area. Secondly, they would block the linear pull through the atrium, furnishing a sense of containment. The northerly one would provide visible shopping area to effectively constitute more storefront space for the corner stores. The southerly ones would both be filled with cafeteria tables for two most

people tend to shop in small groups. Since railings running east-west would have built-in planters, a cascade of plants would be created, descending in tiers towards the atrium floor.
Construction would be steel frame with non-bearing cinder block walls Stucco over styrofoam would cover the cinder blocks, constituting the off-white exterior finish (Dryvit System). The entirety would rest on grade beams supported by driven piers.
The brick paving strip would be continued from the atrium across the site to accent the atrium theme, to provide pedestrian access, and to provide safe crossing areas for shoppers upon leaving their cars. 170 parking spaces would occupy most of the remaining site. Only two of the exist ing trees would be saved in the northern parking area, but honey locust, spruce, clusters of aspen, wild cherry, cedar, and creeping juniper would be planted around the site, the latter to serve as basic ground cover with a wood chip mulch.

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