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Salisbury Council to consider providing city parking for Empire Hotel project

By Liz Moomey

SALISBURY — The Salisbury City Council will consider at 6 p.m. Tuesday a parking agreement with the developer of the Empire Hotel project that would help close the gaps to get the project underway.

The meeting will be at 217 S. Main St.

The parking agreement would provide 32 dedicated parking spaces for no charge for the Empire Hotel redevelopment project.

The agreement states “All spaces designated by the city will be accepted by developer on an as-is, where-is basis with no express or implied warranty of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose or any other warranty.”

At the Aug. 20 City Council meeting. Developer Britt Weaver said to the council the best thing they can do is say yes to proposals that will close the gap and says approval will meet the desires of the city’s timeline.

The council will hold a public hearing regarding the parking spaces.

The council hasn’t yet approved other incentive requests brought before them at the Aug. 6 meeting. They include reimbursement of up to $25,000 toward cost of extending water line to the rear of the building that will also be a fire line, waiver of water tap and utility charges of up to $55,000 and construction of sidewalk improvements adjacent to the property along South Main Street and West Bank Street up to $21,375.

They also are considering extending the contract to June 26, 2020. It also offers two options on the sales price. If the developer purchases the property on or before April 30, 2020, the price would be $560,000; if the developer purchases it after April 30, the price would be $700,000.

The county commissioners approved a tax incentive agreement for the redevelopment project that would give them an additional 25% on top of the automatic 50% reduction because of the property’s landmark status.

Other items on the agenda:

  • The council will consider approving a rezoning with a conditional district to allow for third phase of the RoMed Medical Center, at 1027 Lincolnton Road near the end of Wiley Avenue. The rezoning would be from general residential to residential mixed use and if the conditional district is approved the applicant would be unable to go against what was presented and approved. The Planning Board unanimously recommended the rezoning at its Aug. 27 meeting. Several neighboring residents spoke in support of the additional medical center. One neighbor who lives at the parcel adjoining the proposed medical center spoke against the rezoning. Some also asked the applicants to continue a sidewalk along Lincolnton Road.
  • They will also consider a text amendment for the Land Development Ordinance regarding garden structures and garden features. The Planning Board unanimously agreed on the changes.

• The council will consider parking restrictions on the 700 block of Holmes Street and the 600 block of West Kerr Street. The Salisbury Police and Fire departments reviewed the parking conditions on the two streets and found if cars are parked on both sides of the streets it will impede emergency response. They asked for parking to be restricted to one side.

• On the consent agenda, the council decide to lower the speed limit on Dana Drive, which is primarily residential, from 35 mph to 25 mph. City engineering staff received a petition to lower the posted speed limit. The petition was signed by 77% of property owners.




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