In his third appearance before the Asheville Design Review Board, plans for a large apartment complex at the corner of Hilliard and Clingman Avenues were sent with a recommendation to the Asheville Planning and Zoning Commission. the city to refuse the project.
The Avery, at 363 Hilliard Ave. downtown, was criticized by the Committee and the Downtown Commission as repetitive and lacking in creativity, and changes to the building’s long facade on Clingman were not sufficient to meet city design standards, according to the committee, although the project developer felt it was more a matter of personal opinion.
The two-building complex offers 187 residential units and about 15,000 square feet of commercial space with 201 parking spaces, according to city planner Will Palmquist, who said updated site plans include changes to building materials and a redesign of the second, smaller building along Hilliard Avenue and Pearl Street.
“I think our team worked very hard to make all of these recommendations,” said Daniel Jimenez, with developers Delray Ventures.
After the December meeting, he said he felt the committee might not be 100% happy, but overall he was on the verge of being happy with the elevations, and other changes had been brought after this meeting.
“So in our view, we really feel like it’s a matter of someone’s personal opinion on architecture,” Jimenez said. “I personally think it’s breaking. … We feel like what we’ve done is we’ve created these end-of-the-book effects on this building and then we have kind of an internal consistency which I think is a good architectural design for the building and for this location.”
Committee member Jeremy Goldstein said he understood where the developers were coming from, but said “the rules are pretty clear: they want you to break it down to look like different buildings, and it doesn’t look like more to that now”.
Committee member Bryan Moffitt gave the example of the Barley’s Taproom and Pizzeria area on Biltmore Avenue, where what is essentially the same building looks like four separate buildings.
With the repetitive elements along the side of the building in the Avery’s plans, he said it read like a tall building and shared those concerns about the Hilliard Avenue side of the building as well.
“We personally think it looks good,” Jimenez said. “I’m a bit puzzled by this whole thing, because I think it’s a matter of personal opinion, and it’s mandatory review and voluntary compliance, but I think we’ve worked very hard to make it a design that fits well with Asheville.”
According to the staff report, the project does not meet city standards, including the requirement that the project fill more than 80% of the frontage on the main pedestrian streets and that at least 70% of the frontage at the level of the street is composed of windows, doors and other openings.
The staff recommendation was to proceed with the formal review a second time, so that the developers could address a number of aspects that are out of line with the design guidelines, including the redesign of the long elevation along the avenue Clingman to minimize its apparent length.
Other reasons staff recommended pursuing their review include removing, altering or landscaping the driveway and parking lot on Hilliard Avenue, upgrading materials to reflect a more urban design and the increase in openings on the ground floor.
Plans show a straight-in-straight entrance along Hilliard which a public commentator felt was a missed opportunity on the key pedestrian street, with the main entrance bringing cars into the pedestrian zone. Another access is planned for Pearl Street.
Jimenez said the development team’s concern with having the entry on Hilliard is to serve commercial use on the corner of Hilliard and Clingman, saying that in their experience, retail uses need access very visible to be successful, and without it, you would probably have to get rid of commercial space on the ground floor.
Moffitt pushed back on that speculation, but said he wasn’t necessarily opposed to the Hilliard entrance as long as it was properly masked and included something on the sidewalk clearly marking the pedestrian zone.
Lance Hartland, traffic engineer for the project, said based on his analysis, two entrances are important because a single entrance tends to overload on Peal Street and further down Clingman near Patton Avenue.
Plans also show dedicated two-way cycle lanes on Hilliard, which would have a dedicated right-turn lane on Clingman and a dedicated left-turn lane on Pearl Street, which engineer Warren Sugg said included the development giving up about 3 feet of space but keeping a 10 foot sidewalk.
Committee review in this case is mandatory, but approval is not, and the committee’s vote on Jan. 20 came after Jimenez said the developers wanted to stay on schedule for the Planning Commission meeting. and zoning of February 2.
Ultimately, the conditional rezoning will need to be approved by the Asheville City Council, and the project could still come back to the Design Review Board before heading to the City Council.
123 Haywood Hotel
Also in his third design review board appearancethe condo-turned-hotel project near St. Lawrence’s Basilica can now move forward after a positive committee vote on Jan. 20, after the designers made a number of changes in line with feedback they got in these previous reviews.
At just under 20,000 square feet, developers from Charlotte’s INTEC Group hope to move forward with a 15-unit extended-stay hotel on the small, less than quarter-acre site.
The condominiums are already put up for sale at the buildingwhich gained condominium approval in 2020, including up to $725,000 for a 1,209-square-foot condo facing the basilica and mountain views beyond.
Requiring Tier I approval under the city’s new hotel approval process, the project does not need approval from the Planning and Zoning Commission or city council, but did of the positive vote of the design review board.
In previous commentsthe committee noted less glass and more metal cladding along the exterior of the building, were concerned about the white color, and felt the proposal lacked a sense of place.
A pocket park included in the condo proposal had to be transformed into retail space for the hotel’s new use, activating the city’s requirement of at least two stories downtown, forcing designers to fill in the building for a more square shape.
According to updated plans submitted on January 20, the first floor of the building protrudes about 3 feet from the upper floors, alleviating this concern for committee members.
“I like it,” Moffitt said. “I think it will be a modern addition to the town of Asheville.”
He said he was excited about how the process went, saying the approved building plans were much better than what was presented to the board.
President Robin Raines praised the designers for adding more openings to create a more open and airy space.
Committee member Steven Lee Johnson noted the addition of a green roof on the building and green screens around the commercial side of the building, saying the developers have been “responsive to our very specific requests”.
48 S. Market Street offices and condos
Plans to renovate and expand a 1929 building at 48 S. Market St. in downtown Asheville for condos and offices were given the green light by the committee after a brief discussion Jan. 20, Goldstein calling it “a vast improvement” over what’s already there.
According to the staff report, the Downtown Commission reviewed the project in October and was generally supportive of the project recommending that all murals on the building reflect the area of Eagle Market Street and Triangle Park.
The Planning and Zoning Commission also granted a waiver to the plan to reduce openings along S. Market Street from 70% to 59%, and in its report, staff support the changes, saying “the rehabilitation of the building will help preserve this historic building and the new rooftop addition is appropriately designed to blend in with the older features.”
At the Jan. 20 meeting, planner Shannon Tuch said replacing the opaque openings along South Market technically reduces the number of openings, but the new transparent windows and doors meet the intent of the requirement.
“I think while it technically reduced the number of opens, it actually increased the level of transparency, which I think better meets the intent of the code,” she said.
Much of the existing brick will be retained and restored, according to the staff report, but it is proposed to be repainted, while new unpainted brick will be added where parts of the exterior walls will be rebuilt and fiber cement will be added to the ground level. and high level.
Architect Laura Hudson said the brick was already painted, but structural engineers said the brick wouldn’t stand up to sandblasting.
On the sides of the building, existing clay tiles covered in deteriorating stucco will instead be covered with a thin brick veneer that will be painted and ready for a mural, she said.
The new construction will be set back between these parts of the building and will rise three stories high and remain in unpainted dimensional brick, Hudson said, more in keeping with what is already nearby.
Derek Lacey covers environment, growth and development for the Asheville Citizen Times. Reach him at [email protected] or 828-417-4842 and find him on Twitter @DerekAVL.