Wild Goose Villa

I came across these concept drawings for a proposed development in Minden, and I thought they were too good not to share. This is exactly the kind of mixed-use development we’ve been talking about lately, the kind I think should be built in downtown Carson City. Except this one is being built in pastureland on the outskirts of Minden.

The Wild Goose Villa is slated to go in at the northwest corner of Ironwood and Lucerne Streets in Minden, cater-corner across from the Sierra Nevada Trading Company. Click here to see the exact location on a map.

At first glance, this looks like any other high-end high-density residential project. The building holds about fifty condos, a mix of one-, two-, and three-bedroom units, with an on-site gym, covered parking, interior hallways, balconies in each unit, and other amenities.

But when you look close at the plans, you see that strip of glass windows along the ground floor. All of that, facing the parking lot, is retail space available for lease. These could be specialty shops set up to serve the residents of the building or, more interestingly, they could be shops owned by the residents. This would allow owners and employees to literally walk down the stairs to get to work, providing a little bit of urban living in what is still predominately a rural town. It’s a bold plan, made even more bold by the out-of-the-way location, but it would be exciting to see it come together and actually get built. Sort of like an experiment to see if this sort of thing can fly around here.

There are a few other details to the project. The whole building is shaped like a horseshoe, like a hexagon cut in half. The retail space would only take up about half of the square footage of the ground floor. The rest of it, behind the stores, would be a covered parking garage for residents. You can see a car disappearing into the garage on the right-hand side of the drawing. The shops at each end of the building, flanking the strip mall, would be set aside as larger spaces for restaurants. And phase two would involve building a detached three-story office building in the parking lot, roughly where the imaginary photographer is standing. This would provide an incentive for professionals to buy into the development, if they could live this close to their office.

I’m excited to see this project get off the ground, and see how well it’s received. But I think it’s still in the early stage of development, and not a sure thing to get built. We’ll be keeping our eyes on that corner.

One comment

  1. I thought I’d add that there appears to be some pre-building activity happening with the project. A sign was posted last week announcing a November public hearing regarding a change to the project. The developer is asking for a zoning variance. He wants to drop the required delivery parking spaces from four to three.

    So, something is still going on with the project, but will it eventualy happen? I also don’t know. However, if it’s going to get done, I hope they do it right so that it becomes a healthy project for the neighborhood and not just another office building with an economically unhealthy mix of tenants . . . JMHO

    It would be nice to have a destination retail environment in town where people could go, meet, window-shop, have a cup, and sit outside in a pleasant environment to talk about the latest happenings. I don’t know if this project will provide that kind of pedestrian environment, but I also can’t think of any other retail area in North Minden that truely meets that criteria at this time.

    Even the nearby Minden Village development seems to not be the most active place, but IMO it’s due to the mix of tennants. It’s neither a retail develoment, or an office complex. It’s something inbetween that isn’t a success in either realm.

    If the Wild Goose developers do it right, IMO, they could have a successful project that would add something to the community. It could be a place where some people desire to live, others consider as a destination location to spend some time, and an environment that the nearby community would be happy to have as a neighbor. I happen to live somewhat near this project, certainly within walking distance, and I’m looking forward to it’s successful implementation.

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