Big Cherry project approved in City Council re-vote

A rendering of the proposed redevelopment as seen from Kings Drive. This is from the rezoning petition by Goode Properties.
A rendering of the proposed redevelopment as seen from Kings Drive. This is from the rezoning petition by Goode Properties. Charlotte

Charlotte City Council approved Monday a major mixed-use project in Cherry that would add hundreds of hotel rooms, apartments, a parking deck and retail space, after initially voting down the project last week.

The project has long been opposed by neighbors, who said it was too tall and too dense for Cherry. The neighborhood just southeast of uptown has seen a flood of changes in recent years, with large, upscale new houses popping up throughout the historically African American enclave.

Last week, Charlotte City Council appeared to side with neighbors, voting to turn down the project. Although the vote was 6-5, neighbors had filed a protest petition against the project, meaning nine votes were needed to secure its passage.

Led by Democrat Patsy Kinsey, who represents the area, council members Al Austin, Michael Barnes, Claire Fallon and LaWana Mayfield voted against the proposed plan.

But after the vote, the developers agreed to lower the height of the proposed building from 106 to 100 feet.

Barnes, a Democrat, said he would support the proposal with the height reduction, and City Council voted to reopen the hearing last week. That meant it was eligible for a re-vote at Monday night’s meeting.

Following Barnes, Mayfield, Fallon and Austin changed their votes to support the project. Kinsey still voted no.

“I am very glad that the petitioner did lower the height to 100 feet,” Kinsey said. “There are other (parts of the project) that don’t meet the area plan. For those reasons I will vote against this.”

Charlotte developer Roy Goode is leading a partnership that’s been planning the development on a 2-acre site at South Kings Drive and Baxter Street for more than a year. The building had originally been planned to reach 119 feet. That would have been 50 feet taller than recommended by the non-binding Midtown Morehead Cherry Area Plan, which the city adopted in 2012.

Goode’s plan for the site would include up to 300 apartment units, 225 hotel rooms and a parking deck with up to 7,000 square feet of ground-floor retail space, backing up to the single-family residential areas of the neighborhood.

Steve Harrison: 704-358-5160, @Sharrison_Obs

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