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IC Downtown Tower Site Plan Review Fails

By February 17, 2022March 21st, 2022Site plan
A 13-story skyscraper could be coming to the site of the former US Bank drive-thru. CREDIT NOAH TONG

FEB. 28: The proposed 13-story skyscraper at 21 S. Linn St. in Iowa City has encountered another roadblock.

Iowa City staff members rejected site plan review for the CA Ventures-backed project on Feb. 22 after “staff objected because the plans did not meet all code requirements,” Iowa City senior planner Anne Russett said in an email to the CBJ.

CA Ventures now has the opportunity to review staff feedback before submitting a revised site plan.

Ms. Russett noted that it is common for site plans to go through several review cycles before being approved.

The previous review was due to be completed by March 2, and while the online public records indicate that another review of the sitemap will take place, there is no corresponding deadline for the next review for the moment.

The failed site review is the final hurdle Chicago-based CA Ventures will face after its initial proposal was rejected by the Iowa Board of Adjustment in August.

Undeveloped land on the site of the former U.S. Bank drive-thru at 21 S. Linn St. in Iowa City was eventually re-proposed.

CA Ventures, a Chicago-based developer that also owns RISE at 435 S. Linn St. and LATITUDE at Iowa River Landing, submitted a plan Feb. 9 for the construction of a 13-story mixed-use skyscraper. The building would include 2,511 square feet of retail space, 228 housing units and 255 rooms, according to Iowa City Public Records.

CA Ventures Vice President Andrew Savoy’s first proposal was rejected by the Iowa City Board of Adjustment in a 3-2 vote in August. A level of mystery has surrounded the lot since the ruling, after no further permit applications were filed with the city following the ruling.

Although available public records now lack detailed information, the new proposal at first glance resembles the previous plan. It seems that the new proposal represents one less accommodation than the first proposal, as the Iowa City Press-Citizen reported last year.

Public records indicate that the site plan should be fully revised by March 2. Next steps may include additional fees and an approval letter.

An email from Anne Russett, an Iowa City planner, to developers said more information may be needed for “proper review” to take place.

CA Ventures would likely have to appear before the adjustment board if the structure requires a special exception, as their previous plan called for last year.