Sunday, March 19, 2017

Thankfully, HARB Delays Speculator KANTI PATEL's MARRIOTT RENAISSANCE Nightmare at San Marco & Castillo Drive

Note to dodgy speculator-hotelier KANTI PATEL: We, the People are watching you and your works and pomps -- hands off our HP-5 District. You don't get to violate zoning laws by a PUD that swallows another 6% of HP-5 with your materially false and misleading statements about underground parking not being feasible, using a bait-and-switch scheme with a fake "tunnel." Enough. Decisions are made by people who show up. The Establishment's days of destroying our historic city to profiteer are ending.

We, the People showed up at December 1, 2014 inauguration of Nancy Shaver as St. Augustine Mayor (Comm'r Nancy Sikes-Kline, via Facebook)

Posted March 8, 2017 05:31 am - Updated March 8, 2017 11:47 am
Hearing delayed again for San Marco Hotel zoning changes

Residents will have to wait at least another month for a Planning and Zoning Board decision on changes to the San Marco Hotel Planned Unit Development.

The board on Tuesday continued the rezoning hearing to the April 4 board meeting. The board also delayed the same issue in February after a lengthy hearing, which focused on plans for surface parking.

The rezoning requests — which would change parcels from the Historic Preservation-5 zoning district to the hotel’s Planned Unit Development zoning — would allow more land to be added to the existing PUD and allow for surface parking instead of underground parking, as had already been approved. Engineers were concerned underground parking could destabilize roads in the area.

Barnacle Bill’s would be razed to provide parking as part of the plan, and the business owner planned to look for another location as of December.

The hotel would have 89 rooms and would provide 91 surface parking spots instead of the 114 originally planned as part of the underground parking garage. The hotel would also pay for guests to use up to 50 spaces in the city parking garage across the street.

Some voiced concerns that the valet parking lot on West Castillo Drive wouldn’t directly connect with the hotel’s driveway.

Attorney James Whitehouse, who represented owner Kanti Patel at the February meeting, offered a tunnel as an alternative to connecing the parking lot and the hotel, but that wasn’t hashed out at the meeting.

Plan for San Marco Hotel with surface parking stalls in PZB hearing
Proposal: Barnacle Bill’s building to be razed for parking for San Marco Hotel
Owner decides timing now right for San Marco Hotel
The San Marco Hotel was an exciting place to visit

When the garage is full, chances are the new hotel will be as well. Don't count on those 50 parking spaces being empty. Other businesses have had to alter or cancel plans due to a lack of available parking. This is one of the most congested intersections in the city, with constant pedestrians, tour trains, local vehicles and confused tourists. If the entrances, exits and parking for this new business are going to cause added congestion or confusion, then this plan should be refused until the problems are solved. Also, can Mr. Patel guarantee that no traffic lanes will be blocked during construction?

Jack (sponger) Harvell
The Disneyfication continues...

Karen Cornwell
Why not just block off more streets? That seems to be the normal for the city commission

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