The developer of the proposed Marriott Residence Inn on 17th Street and West Avenue gave Belle Isle residents a presentation of plans for the 116-room hotel on Thursday.
The project is scheduled for a Planning Board review on April 30.
Here are the vital statistics:
— It’s a five-story building, the same height as the retail apartment building immediately to the east that houses the Vespa store on the corner of 17th Street and Alton Road. It would have 66 parking spaces in a mechanical lot.
— The development site is tiny, about 25,000 square feet north of 17th Street, east of the planned West Avenue Bridge, and south of the Collins Canal, which parallels Dade Boulevard.
— Residence Inns feature studios and suites with small kitchens tailored toward business travelers and families. It will have a ground floor restaurant for guests only (these hotels provide free breakfasts), a small conference room and a rooftop pool to serve hotel guests only (11 p.m. close). There will be no outdoor bar counter on the roof, and the owner has proposed to agree not to hold any events on the rooftop.
— The developer is the Finvarb Group, headed by Robert Finvarb. The company has a number of Marriott properties in Florida and elsewhere, including the Courtyard Inn on Washington Avenue at 16th Street. The architect is renowned Kobi Karp.
Belle Isle Residents Association members at Thursday night’s meeting at the Belle Plaza condo had lots of questions about how the hotel would accommodate deliveries, the expected traffic impact, and when employees would come and go.
Traffic planner Richard Garcia said his impact study showed the hotel would generate less than half the traffic of some other uses that could be allowed on the property, such as a pharmacy, dry cleaner or fast food restaurant. He projected the busiest hour for traffic to be 5-6 p.m., when about 33 trips would be made in and out of the property.
The project’s land-use lawyer, Michael Larkin, projected that no more than 12 employees would be working at the hotel at any given time, but that did not include parking valets.
So, what do you think?