Initially, next week’s upcoming Asheville City Council meeting, on Jan. 28, promised a showdown over a controversial development near downtown. With that matter withdrawn, however, the remaining items on the agenda are changes to the city’s rules to encourage less light pollution and modifications to development guidelines to bring them in line with new state laws.
A proposed Chestnut Street development that sparked a major debate about the clash between neighborhood preservation and the need for more housing will not happen, as the developer withdrew the project yesterday due to neighborhood opposition and a number of issues with the development process.
On Jan. 14, Asheville City Council approved an overhaul of development oversight along with a new infrastructure plan for the River Arts District, Council also created a City-County African-American Heritage Commission and rezoned a small development on steep slopes in North Asheville.
In their first meeting of the new year, Asheville City Council turns its attention to the River District, voting on an ambitious infrastructure improvement project and an overhaul of the way development in the area is reviewed.
What’s needed to solve Asheville’s housing crunch? Fewer development hurdles, a city “land bank” to preserve property for affordable housing, more density and a hard “target number” for units that need to be created each year— these are some of the ideas to come out of a recent meeting of the Affordable Housing Advisory Committee.
As part of a major effort to examine Asheville’s lack of affordable housing and possibly overhaul the way city government approaches the issue, the Affordable Housing Advisory Committee interviewed a range of developers to find out why many don’t build affordable housing. They replied that the costs of land, a lack of infrastructure, insufficient transit, city rules inhibiting denser development and neighborhood opposition all play a role in why many of them don’t build more affordable units.
The tourism industry already brings in $2.3 billion annually to Buncombe County. That’s up from roughly $183 million 30 years ago. But to continue to grow local visitation, government officials and business owners need to “anticipate trends that are shaping the future,” says Mike Konzen, a leading global consultant.
A new Asheville City Council met Dec. 10, with Esther Manheimer sworn in as mayor, Marc Hunt chosen as the new vice mayor, three development decisions postponed and neighborhood leaders raising concerns about issues in East Asheville. (Photo by Alicia Funderburk)
The new Asheville City Council and mayor take office next Tuesday, Dec. 10, at a swearing-in before the regular meeting. Council was facing a vote on a controversial development, but it’s likely that will be delayed, though there’s still decisions on a new vice mayor, an apartment project and an overhaul of oversight in the River Arts District.
Wolf Ridge Ski Resort is now under new management and big changes are in the works.
At a ceremony this evening, outgoing Asheville Mayor Terry Bellamy’s portrait joined predecessors on the walls of City Hall. In her final speech, Bellamy touted the city’s low unemployment rate and improved relations with Buncombe County government, thanking many of her colleagues. (photo by Josh Vaughn)
Local nonprofit Green Opportunities coordinates everything from community gardens to the renovation of the Reid Center. The organization’s recently released annual report provides a glimpse at the scale of its efforts and funding.
The McKibbon Hotel Group will not develop city-owned property across from the Basilica of St. Lawrence. According to an announcement from the company, a lawsuit by other downtown hoteliers dragged on long enough that the project was no longer viable.
Facing a “liquidity crunch,” Mountain BizWorks CEO Shaw Canale has stepped down from her post, a job she’s had since 2009.
After a discussion about conflicting city goals, the need for more density and the precedent for growth throughout Asheville, the city’s Planning and Zoning Commission narrowly approved a proposed 16-unit housing development on Chestnut Street at tonight’s meeting.
After months of delays, a proposed housing development on East Chestnut makes its way to the city’s Planning and Zoning Commission tonight. The plans for a 16-unit development have become a flashpoint about larger development concerns in Asheville. In this case the plans have drawn opposition from some neighborhood residents and preservationists who believe it’s too dense and out of character for the area, while supporters assert the need to alleviate the city’s housing crunch means such projects are necessary.
Before a small crowd of downtown residents, business owners and city officials, developer Tony Fraga laid out preliminary plans for a 14-story Cambria Suites hotel on Battery and Page Avenues this evening. Photo by Carrie Eidson.
Local developer Tony Fraga wants to build a $28 million hotel downtown at the intersection of Battery Park and Page Avenues. He’ll present more about his plans at an Oct. 30 neighborhood meeting. (File photo by Jonathan Welch)
The five Asheville City Council candidates squared off at the Council of Independent Business Owners’ forum yesterday afternoon as this year’s campaign entered its final stretch. Many of the topics discussed had been dealt with at previous forums, with some exceptions. In this case, the candidates questioned each other, and spoke frankly about their thoughts on development and NIMBYism.
After an eight-month delay, New Belgium Brewing will resume site work this November on its Asheville location along Craven Street in the River Arts District.
Asheville City Council chambers were as packed as they’ve been in quite awhile as development teams, UNC Asheville staff, Boy Scouts and advocates of clean energy and civil liberties all filled City Hall for tonight’s meeting. (Photo by Max Cooper)