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orulz

Horizons - High rises on Merrimon

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Finally we have details of what's being considered at the Deal Motorcars site on Merrimon, courtesy of the Citizen-Times: Merrimon may grow up.

The plan calls for 385 residential units, a 150 room hotel, plus retail and office space, in buildings ranging from 2 to 13 stories tall. The smaller buildings are on the outside (retail / office facing Merrimon on the front of the development, and townhomes facing the neighborhood on Holland street to the back.) Nearly all parking will be underground.

All I can say is - wow. This would definitely push downtown further up Merrimon. The 13-story buildings on Merrimon in the renderings look a little monolithic and wide, wonder if they could be broken up a bit? Maybe push Broad street all the way through to Holland, though the neighborhood probably wouldn't like that.

Those 13-story buildings will stick WAY out, since this is at the top of a prominent hill. I might be OK with that, but I'm not sure yet. I guess I grew up in North Asheville and I have a bit of an emotional attachment to how the area looks now, but then again this project - with a few modifications - would be a definite improvement for the neighborhood. Still, I'm a bit hesitant.

This sort of development is exactly what I would like to see in Asheville, but Merrimon? I guess I'm just not accustomed to thinking of Merrimon as an extension of downtown. The modification to the Urban Village district passed by City Council to allow a 12-story hotel at Biltmore Park may have been a bit of a can o' worms.

I've got a few places where I would love to see developments like this, and where neither I nor anyone would question it: Anderson Nissan on Patton, Doctors Park or Matthews Ford on Biltmore, the Taj Ma Garage on South Charlotte, the Electric Supply Company on Ashland. While these lots are all about 1/2 the size of the Deal Motorcars block, All of these are natural extensions of Downtown, and if not already zoned CBD, could be zoned CBD with little or no fuss.

horizons.jpg

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Some of those corner buildings look very Raleigh or Charlotte -esque.

I agree -- Raleigh or Charlotte-esque in a bland upscale mall-ish kind of way. Lets hope that the corner dixie-cup atriums are stricken from the design. I'm not surprised to see this kind of thing planned for Merrimon -- if the trend continues, I'd expect to see the apartments at Pinnacle Ridge come down and some of the old strip malls be replaced with developments like this one.

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I'm not surprised to see this kind of thing planned for Merrimon -- if the trend continues, I'd expect to see the apartments at Pinnacle Ridge come down and some of the old strip malls be replaced with developments like this one.

*shudder*

I sincerely hope not.

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If only Staples could have waited a couple years and then become an anchor retail tenant of this project.

Wonder if they could be convinced to move, and their ugly-ass building torn down and replaced with something appropriate.

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Doesn't bother me at all. Aside from downtown and the South Slope, the next most logical place for dense urban growth like this are the sprawlways leading away from downtown to the compass points. Build enough of them along those suburban strip corridors and they're no longer suburban strip corridors -- they're new downtowns, or extensions of downtown. And that sounds fine to me. I wish all the suburban crap in Asheville could be replaced with this kind of growth.

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This was scheduled to go before council a couple weeks ago (1/15) but the developers asked for the hearing to be delayed until July due to neighborhood opposition and poor economic conditions.

They may be able to work things out with the neighbors, but if the economic outlook isn't improved by then (who knows if it will) then this development might be put on the shelf anyway.

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True... Although as with most area residents, I do not find myself up nights weeping bitterly that the real estate industry in Asheville is tanking. Frankly, and again most area residents feel the same, I'd like to see more realtors (or all of them) sleeping under the I-240 overpass and eating out of dumpsters. If this means that good projects such as Horizons or the Ellington slow or stall along with all the subdivisions, so be it.

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What ever happened to this project?

Its sort of ugly but that could be tweaked, the density is nice but the buildings all look too similar which would stand out too much. I think some parts of Merimon are great for dense growth. If they widened Merimon to include turning lanes and provided good urban public transport, density would be wonderful and manageable there.

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What ever happened to this project?

Its sort of ugly but that could be tweaked, the density is nice but the buildings all look too similar which would stand out too much. I think some parts of Merimon are great for dense growth. If they widened Merimon to include turning lanes and provided good urban public transport, density would be wonderful and manageable there.

Between nearby residents' complaints that the project was too tall and too urban, and the imploding economy, this project is almost certainly dead.

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A developer has been meeting with the city regarding a possible Harris Teeter on this site:

Harris Teeter for Deal Motors Site?

I'm amazed that this property is zoned "highway business" It would be nice if the developer could do a store closer to Merrimon with some sort of residential on the back side of the lot.

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I'm not sure how many on this forum pay attention to what goes on in Charlotte, but the Lowes project is in my opinion a shining example of a successful integration of a big box into a tight site abutting a residential neighborhood.

Thisis the rezoning petition, and the link to the UP discussion thread is

I would really like to get this project in front of some city leaders.

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The rumors are true, Harris Teeter is hoping to build here. Their plan takes up only half the horizons development area. Their design however is terrible, proabably just as bad as the staples, with the back of the store facing Merrimon and the entrance facing the parking lot behind it.

I'd rather have a regular old store with parking in front than this crap. Yet this land seems too valuable for just a stupid one-story grocery store. Harris Teeter has successfully integrated their stores into mixed use projects before so why can't they try something like that here? (A regular-size, two-floor store at North Hills in Raleigh, and a smaller, one-floor store at Fifth and Poplar in Charlotte come to mind.)

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Geez what a terrible design. I understand concerns about having multiple entrances/exits, but would it have killed them to put a door either on the side or the back of the building? What's the point of being close to the sidewalk if you have to walk all the way to the back (I'm sorry, "front") of the building?

This could be so much better.

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