Mackensy Lunsford of the Asheville Citizen-Times reports the following in a story about the recent closing of the downtown Subway restaurant on Battery Park Avenue:
In 2008, Fraga proposed the redevelopment of the Haywood Park property between Haywood Street and Page Avenue, plans which included a 25-story hotel on Page Avenue.
The plans were dropped later that year.
Fraga said his new plans, which have been downsized, now include a branded hotel and additional parking. A ground-floor segment of the property on the corner of Battery Park and Page Avenue will be rebuilt.
Fraga declined to name the hotel. “We’re in the process of that approval,” he said.
He hopes the project will get under way by the end of the year. “We have to develop plans and everything else, and that takes time, you know. We’ll probably break ground next year.”
The photo above shows the corner of Page and Battery Park that would be the location of the new development. By my count, this makes the fourth new hotel in the works for downtown Asheville:
-There’s the one planned on the former Three Brothers restaurant site on Haywood Street.
-There’s one planned just off Merrimon next to the Exxon/51 Grille. It is said to be a Marriott.
-And there’s one planned on Haywood Street right across from the U.S. Cellular Center by the owner of the Aloft Hotel down on Biltmore.
I understand that the Indigo Hotel is subsiding and is gradually falling onto I-240, which may put the long-term future of the hotel into question. I believe that, if more and more people are attracted to visit Asheville for business or pleasure, this can only be a good thing for the economy but also for the pride of Asheville as a city that people want to visit. We’re a city with character and unique appeal and I celebrate this. Its understandable that more hotels are needed to accommodate more people. I don’t believe a hotel would be built in the hope that more people will stay in them. I understand that a hotel will be aware of the demand before it spends millions of dollars building it. However, I agree with the comments about the construction needing to be intelligent, such as having adequate parking and the architecture being in keeping with surrounding historical architecture or the perceived future appearance of the city. After all, historical architecture is beautiful but its unusual for buildings to be built in the same style now. Modern is not necessarily bad if its beautiful.
I for one love the idea of more hotels.
I agree that downtown still has room for another hotel or two. What’s upsetting to me is the lack of architectural oversight. Some of the more recent construction projects don’t seem to fit in here as much as they would in South Beach (which is probably where the money is coming from). We are lucky Asheville escaped the reinforced concrete construction boom (aside from the BBT building) in recent history and has retained its historical and architectural charm. I’m curious why the city is approving projects that don’t share the same appearance as the photos of downtown promoted on various websites, AVL Visitor’s Center, Downtown Association, etc. Are there architectural design guidelines and requirements involving appearance for large development projects, and if so, who regulates or approves these projects?
The sad thing is, all the buildings built in downtown in the past handful of years, have passed the oversight of at least 2 different appointed/elected boards …
Nobody’s got time for architectural oversight. What are you thinking? We need cash! How else will we pay to pressure wash the piss off of our sidewalks, give millions to “Company X”, AND give $2 million to an Art Museum who gets free rent and still can’t succeed? Get with the program!
The City does not pay to clean the sidewalks …
they are the responsibility of the businesses (building owner) which they front … at least that’s what the City ordinance says.
City of Asheville’s Code of Ordinances, Chapter 16; Street, Sidewalk and Other Public Places, Article I; In General, Section 16-3; Keeping sidewalks, grass strips drainage swales and gutters clear, clean and unobstructed., Sub-section C; Maintenance Requirements., Number 1 through 4. The specific ordinance states as follows:
1. Sidewalk, curb and grass strip: It shall be the responsibility of the responsible party to ensure that the public sidewalk and curb abutting a property owner’s property are kept clear of dirt, grass, weeds, mud trash, debris and vegetation of any kind to prevent a hazard to the public. The vegetation shall be removed, cut or trimmed so as not to require a pedestrian to take evasive action to avoid physical contact with the same or otherwise hinder the safe passage of pedestrians. The grass strip between the sidewalk and curb is to be kept mowed to a height not to exceed eighteen (18) inches.
2. Drainage swales: The responsible party that has a drainage swale running along the street that abuts the responsible party’s property shall mow and otherwise properly maintain such swale so that it can continue to serve its proper drainage function.
3. Ice: The responsible party whose property abuts a paved sidewalk upon which ice may in any manner accumulate from any source other than from a weather event, shall remove such ice from the sidewalk on or before 10:00 a.m. each day in which the temperature exceeds 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
4. Weather event: The responsible party whose property abuts a paved sidewalk, shall remove snow, hail, sleet and other similar accumulation from such within forty-eight (48) hours after the snow, hail, sleet or other similar accumulation ceases to fall.
… … … … …
It works out real nice when the City (or State) plows the snow up onto the sidewalk and then expects the business to foot the bill to clear it and the resulting ice from refreeze.
One word…parking. At least Aloft has a lot we can all park in (and it is really nice)…will the other new hotels that are proposed have the same?
Build up, not out.
Asheville’s downtown had nowhere near enough hotels until Aloft and Indigo came along. For a long time, decades really, the only options were the Renaissance, Haywood Park, and Sheraton Four Points. The former Days Inn and the now condo-ized Interstate Motel have always been downscale and may have been OK for some but probably not for most.
Not sure how well the Renaissance is maintained but it is pretty old, plus it’s a full service place and it’s expensive. Haywood Park is small and expensive. The Sheraton, when I stayed there about 7 or 8 years ago, was OK but is kind of disconnected from downtown, and seemed to be showing its age.
I suspect that even after the Indigo and the Aloft there is room in the market for a few more players. If the new hotels put the squeeze on some of the older ones and force them to either lower their rates or update to keep pace, then everybody wins.
Bingo. People aren’t building these hotels because they don’t see opportunity. Hotel prices have increased substantially over the past few years and I welcome the competition.
Btw, how is the Sheraton kind of disconnected from downtown, but not the renaissance—it’s across the street?
At least from the Renaissance you can look down from your room and see Pack Square park. The Four Points is situated down a hill from Woodfin Avenue so mostly you see the parking lot and I-240 from your room.
This is exactly right. Before the Indigo, when was the last hotel built downtown? 1990, maybe? And even the Aloft and Indigo haven’t added a lot of rooms. Relatively speaking, neither is a large hotel. (Remember that the Indigo building includes condos.)
I’ll also point out that none of the proposed hotels have yet to break ground. (And there’s yet another rumored to be on the way.) I’ll be surprised if all of these ever get built.
The more hotels downtown, the more money stays downtown.
Keep the density in downtown.
I don’t mind downtown hotels. In fact, I support this one and I supported the original Haywood Park Towers project, which was an excellent piece of urban planning. What bothers me is how faddish development in Asheville is. You say you’re opening a brewery? How nice! Let’s open fifteen more in the space of two years! A hotel downtown? That sounds lovely — let’s build three more! It’s like we have no innovators around here at all sometimes.
Perhaps there will be a mini bench for you to nap on between job interviews.
Oh good, I was looking for a place to live affordably.
Try looking in Leicester or Enka. Not everybody can live downtown.