What did you think about the new design for Telegraph?

The design. Courtesy: Kirk E. Peterson & Associates

Yesterday we asked our readers what they thought of the new Kirk Peterson design for a new building to go on the northeast corner of Telegraph and Haste. A respectable 256 of you responded to our unscientific, imperfectly worded poll, and the verdict is that more of you like it than hate it (45% versus 26%).

A significant number (13%) are not sure what to make of the proposal. While many (16%) are simply surprised that anything at all is being planned for the site which has been vacant for more than two decades.

Many readers weighed in the comments on the poll (and our earlier story on the project), and participated in a lively debate on the value — or otherwise — of clearly historicist design. Given the history of contention over the site, including a city suit against the owner, Ken Sarachan, a number of commenters wondered whether the design, or anything like it, would ever happen.

Here are the results:

What do you think of the design for the new building on Telegraph, La Fortaleza?

  • I like it. (45%, 134 Votes)
  • I hate it. (27%, 79 Votes)
  • Wait, they're going to build something at last? (15%, 43 Votes)
  • I'm not sure. (13%, 40 Votes)

Total Voters: 296

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  • Hyper_lexic

    Hi – just FYI, when you first load this page, it comes up asking for more input, not showing the poll results.

  • carter_nberkeley

    I voted as hating it. Folks, it looks cool but, if ever built, it would be a huge White Elephant. Face it, Sarachan is simply blowing smoke. It’s past time for him to be paying his debt to the city.

  • Doc

    He needs to file a consent decree, if it isn’t built two years after permit, he forfits the civil action against him. Personally I think it could be a cool building.

  • Charles_Siegel

     That is exactly the compromise that is needed.  The city agrees to end the suit if Sarachan builds this.  Sarachan agrees to pay a substantial penalty if he violates the agreement by failing to build  it.

  • Berkeley Resident

    That sounds great to me.  The best way to end this game!

  • Peter Ashlock

    The design is in keeping with the new retro movement toward older historical styles that Berkeley has had a few examples of from Patrick Kennedy. The drawing looks kind of nice but the Berkeley Inn that was on the site was all brick, if that matters. Since it burned down long ago it seems it would be practical to include store fronts for the location at the bottom of the building. What is the expected and intended use for the building? To bring rich people from the hill s to ooh and ahh over the quaint bohemia of the homeless punk kids dealing amphetamines on the street? How about a movie theater or a music venue? Is this all below market rate apartments? Not likely, being that Berkeley talks frequently out of both sides of it’s mouth. How about going right down the middle of the street and putting in store fronts, a small cabaret and at least HALF of the apartments for low income NON STUDENT housing. Probably on a cold day in hell.