Addition of new Hilton hotel could have economic benefits for Carrboro

Marty Roupe, Carrboro’s development review administrator, presents an artist’s drawing of the proposed Hilton Garden Inn at the public hearing. The hotel has been redesigned several times since the idea was created in 2014, and Main Street Properties is still working with the Board of Aldermen to address all potential issues surrounding the project. (Staff photo by Brandon White)
Marty Roupe, Carrboro’s development review administrator, presents an artist’s drawing of the proposed Hilton Garden Inn at the public hearing. The hotel has been redesigned several times since the idea was created in 2014, and Main Street Properties is still working with the Board of Aldermen to address all potential issues surrounding the project. (Staff photo by Brandon White)

The Board of Aldermen heard positive feedback on Tuesday, Feb. 23, for a proposed Hilton Garden Inn on 107 Padgett Lane. If the proposal passes, the Hilton would be the second hotel in the town, preceded only by the Hampton Inn & Suites, which opened to the public in September of 2013.

Trish McGuire, planning director for Carrboro, has witnessed the success of the Hampton Inn & Suites, and believes that opening a second hotel would be a good idea.

“300 East Main Street brought forward the idea in 2014 of putting a second hotel in the property,” McGuire said.

During the hearing, Mayor Lydia Lavelle honored the Chapel Hill High School’s Lady Tigers Indoor Track and Field team by proclaiming Feb. 24, 2016, in their honor. The Board decided immediately after that a vote on the hotel would not be held that evening, and would be pushed to a later date in March.

Marty Roupe, Carrboro’s Development Review Administrator, provided a presentation of the Hilton Garden Inn project. The 5-story hotel would consist of 149 rooms and include a parking deck expansion near the Hampton Inn & Suites.

Roupe also stated during the presentation that while four large oak trees will have to be removed to provide room for the 42,228 square- foot development, the bike path in the area would remain untouched.

Laura Van Sant, the spokesperson for Main Street Properties, attempted to persuade the Board as to why a Hilton Garden Inn would be more beneficial to the town of Carrboro than the previously proposed Butler Condominiums, which would have been a five-story condominium and office complex at the same site as the proposed Hilton Garden Inn.

Van Sant argued that the hotel would provide more tax revenue, as well as more jobs and more revenue at local businesses.

Several Carrboro residents and business owners spoke at the hearing, and all were in favor of the Hilton Garden Inn.

David Young, CEO of VIF International Education, was among the people who praised the idea of a second hotel in Carrboro.

“A hotel that can provide cost-effective rooms for our teachers would be ideal,” Young said. “We’re going to need more space as we expand, and this project would ensure that.”

Throughout the hearing, several members of the board voiced concerns about how the Hilton Garden Inn would affect daily life in the town.

Mayor Lavelle said that her two major concerns were the amount of parking spaces that would be available for residents, and the amount of traffic that would be in Carrboro during the morning and evening hours. Lavelle still preferred the Hilton Garden Inn as a favorable alternative to the Butler Condominiums.

“If the Butler had been built, there would have been 136 spaces for the project, which was a mixed-use space,” Lavelle said.

The next hearing on the proposed hotel development will occur on March 8 in the Orange Water and Sewer Authority Community Room at 400 Jones Ferry Rd. There is no current timetable for the Hilton Garden Inn’s completion date if the town of Carrboro elects to move forward with the project.

 

Board of Aldermen: http://www.ci.carrboro.nc.us/248/Board-of-Aldermen

Hampton Inn & Suites: http://hamptoninn3.hilton.com/en/hotels/north-carolina/hampton-inn-and-suites-chapel-hill-carrboro-downtown-RDUCOHX/index.html

Main Street Properties: http://www.carrboro.com/300eastmain/

 

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Author of the article

White.tinymug

Brandon is a UNC-CH senior journalism major from Apex serving as a staff writer for the Carrboro Commons.