The development boom around Hilldale Shopping Center is continuing with a proposal for a 12-story building with hotel and office space in one of the city’s most desirable neighborhoods.
Raymond Management Co. is proposing a 275,500-square-foot, mixed-use building with a 178-room hotel, office space, and 245-space parking garage at 4601 Frey St., just behind the Target store that faces University Avenue, according to plans submitted to the city.
The hotel would include public space, a small bar, breakfast area and lounge, a patio with fire feature, a library, fitness room, pool and meeting rooms and the ground and first floors, with guest rooms on the fifth through 11th floors, the plans show. There would be structured parking on the bottom floors and 25,000 square-feet of office space on the fourth floor.
Officials with Raymond Management of Middleton and architect Gary Brink and Associates could not be reached for comment. The development team is scheduled to make an informational presentation to the city’s Urban Design Commission on Wednesday.
Raymond Management operates from the same address as the Raymond Group, which manages 30 hotel properties in the United States including the new Hampton Inn and Suites at 440 W. Johnson St. in Downtown Madison.
The development proposal is receiving a positive first-blush impression, with some concerns about traffic and the impact on views of nearby condominiums.
“The idea of a hotel in that general area has been floated for a while,” said Ald. Tim Gruber, 11th District. “It seems likely there’s a market to support it. For guests, it’s a good location with its proximity to Hilldale.”
Most big projects generate concerns about traffic, and owners of the Weston Place condominiums, 625 Segoe Road, have voiced concerns about a big building blocking views, Gruber said.
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Gruber said he understands concerns about views but that it’s unrealistic to expect no further development in the area. The proposed project is designed so its narrow side faces Weston Place, he said.
University Hill Farms Neighborhood Association president Peter Hughes said, “It’s a very well-thought-out plan that would serve the neighborhood and Hilldale area really well.”
The developers do not intend to place a full restaurant in the hotel that would compete with existing establishments in the area, Hughes said. “It’s not a go-to location for entertainment,” he said.
A neighborhood meeting on the proposal is set for 7 p.m. Dec. 12, at Covenant Presbyterian Church, 326 S. Segoe Road.
The proposal comes as the Hilldale expansion continues, more housing rises and businesses open nearby, and the state proceeds with construction of a $186 million, 600,000-square-foot, nine-story office building and a 1,700-stall parking garage with additional commercial development coming just blocks to the west.
In 2015, Hilldale held a grand opening for a $15 million, 53,000-square-foot redevelopment between Macy’s and Metcalfe’s Market that created an open-air corridor on the shopping center’s north end. Hilldale, opened in fall 1962, is now home to a variety of shops and restaurants, parking structures, a Target store and a farmers’ market on Wednesdays and Saturdays.
In May, WS Development announced plans for a 55,000-square-foot project that would open up the south end of the shopping center to give Sundance Cinemas a higher profile, provide new space for University Book Store and continue the trend of more open-air shopping at the center, located at University Avenue and Midvale Boulevard.