Monday, December 6, 2010

St. Charles Hotel

What a sad saga. Years and years of talk and all of it related to how success can only come from demolition. This is what we have seen from the St. Charles Hotel in the Exchange District.

The owner doesn't want to do anything now until an engineer's report is done. In the meantime, the building is empty. The city has had enough of owners who leave their buildings to deteriorate to the point that demolition is the only answer. As such, they have ordered broken windows replaced or to be boarded up. The owner doesn't want to do either.

I don't think the city is to blame for this boutique hotel idea taking so long to develop. Too many times owners have demolished buildings only to see the empty lot to remain forever. Perhaps the thought was that if the goal was to mimic the Hotel Donaldson in Fargo that it required a parking lot beside the hotel.

Hotel Donaldson in the top right and the parking lot beside it

If the issue is parking, look at what is across the street from the Royal Albert Hotel and the St. Charles Hotel. It is a nine story parkade capable of handling 800 cars. And this isn't the only parking in the area.

Meanwhile, this is behind the St. Charles Hotel.

So is the city really to blame for St. Charles taking so long to develop because they won't allow more buildings to be demolished?

hit counter javascript


mrchristian said...

If I recall correctly his parking issue was dealt with for the most part. The guy who owns the Albert offered to trade him land so that whatever number of spots he needed he could get, they just wouldn't be in an enclosed format.

I think parking revenue is what drove this project, not the hotel needing parking.

John Dobbin said...

I think you're right that parking is what drove the project and I wouldn't be surprised if the parking issue won't be presented to this new council again.