At its Tuesday night meeting, Asheville City council voted 7-0 in support of a resolution objecting to the 2006 sale of park land to developer Stewart Coleman by Buncombe County.
The 2006 sale of the .18-acre chunk of City/County Plaza near Asheville City Hall has become one of the main rallying points for opposition to the project. Council was originally scheduled to consider a conditional-use permit on Coleman’s Parkside project, but a last-minute design change reduced the building from 11 stories to nine, thereby circumventing city-council review.
Though the resolution is not legally binding, council members hope it will send a message that county commissioners were remiss in selling the property.
Activists opposing the development hailed the move. “I do applaud you for your resolution tonight,” said Dixie Deerman. “I’ve talked to a lot of people who have never seen a council rise up in this way.”
Council member Brownie Newman called the resolution a first step, indicating that council may explore further plans to challenge the land deal.
On June 24, Buncombe County Commissioners will take up the Parkside issue and explore options for moving forward.
— Brian Postelle, staff writer