Project at Scottish Inn site would move creek
by Anna Oakes
Stonegate Developers of Cornelius was granted a continuance of its 84,438-gallon-per-day water allocation request for the Blowing Rock Road project until October, but partner Jeffrey Wakeman took some time Thursday to share information about a preliminary concept plan with the Boone Town Council.
Currently, Boone Creek flows out in the open over half of the 4.4-acre project site and then is funneled through a pipe along the other half of the property, Wakeman said. The pipe can clog or become overwhelmed with water during significant rain events.
"It really doesn't allow for the water to move across the property in a manner that's safe and efficient," Wakeman said. "We really felt like the only way to do it was to open the stream up."
Wakeman said the developer's current plan would redirect the stream closer to the tracts' border with Faculty Street, where a greenway could be built. However, the stream would then have to be directed into a pipe at the McDonalds property, he said.
He said developers do not yet have the results of a hydraulic study being completed by Blue Ridge Environmental Consultants, but "we feel this configuration can work."
"I know that property -- you inherited a bunch of issues with that creek," Councilwoman Lynne Mason said. "It's nice to see it daylighted and efforts to keep it a trout stream."
The project would include 154 student housing units with 464 bedrooms, 9,000 square feet of commercial retail, a 350-seat restaurant and a 3,600-square-foot exercise facility for residents and 300 members, according to application materials submitted prior to the Aug. 22 Boone Town Council meeting.
Wakeman said the first floor would include commercial retail, while apartments would be located on upper floors. Parking would be located behind the building and not visible on Blowing Rock Road, he said.
The Scottish Inn has been shuttered and fenced off since spring 2012, when the Boone Town Council affirmed a building inspector's May 2011 condemnation order to vacate, repair or demolish the structures because of dilapidated conditions. In April, the council voted to extend the order to repair or demolish the structure until Dec. 31.
In addition to the Scottish Inn and Red Carpet Inn, the project would include other adjacent tracts owned by AMP Enterprises or ADR Capital Management, including 325 and 339 Faculty St.
Wakeman said the developer planned to seek a zoning permit for the project in October.
"This is very encouraging," Councilman Rennie Brantz said. "I think it's a very nice design."