|By Amy Banton, Aiken Standard,
S.C.McClatchy-Tribune Regional News
Dec. 11, 2012--Aiken City Council passed two items Monday evening that will bring more business to the area.
The two proposed hotels on Whiskey Road and the veterinarian clinic at the Woodside Plantation's office complex were each unanimously approved by City Council on their second and final readings.
Nobody from the public spoke on the two items.
The two hotels, which will be a Staybridge Suites and a Holiday Inn Express, will be located on a plot of land off Whiskey Road near Stratford Drive.
The hotels are projected to have an economic impact of $30 million and will create around 100 jobs.
The hotels were first presented to Council earlier this year but were voted down. Residents living in the vicinity of the project expressed concern about one of the two outlets for the hotels to be placed onto Stratford Drive as shown in the concept plan. Traffic was something many of those residents worried about, especially with Stratford Drive being the only way in and out of three different neighborhoods with more than 200 homes combined.
Naman Hotels, the applicant, came back to Council on Nov. 26 with an amended plan that included a frontage road, and the exit onto Stratford was removed.
Residents welcomed the changed plan and applauded the applicant's efforts.
The Holiday Inn Express would be a four-story, 55,072-square-foot building that would include 95 rooms and parking spots. It will not include a restaurant or meeting place.
This type of hotel will cater to those only staying for a few nights.
The second facility, Staybridge Suites, will be more of a "residential hotel," or a place where someone could stay for a few weeks or months.
That building will be 68,115 square feet with 90 rooms, 115 parking spaces and a 600-square-foot meeting room. There will be no restaurant in that hotel.
Later in the meeting, Council passed Woodside Development's revised concept plan for Woodside Plantation. The revision was made to include a veterinarian office in its 16,000 square-foot office complex that was approved by Council in July.
The amendment was requested because veterinarian offices are considered retail use and not office use under the City's zoning ordinance.
Before the application was approved, City Councilman Reggie Ebner asked if there would be an exterior kennel as part of the new veterinarian office. It was confirmed that there will not be an exterior kennel because it's not shown in the concept plan and if one were to be added, the applicant would have to come back to Council for approval.
(c)2012 the Aiken Standard (Aiken, S.C.)
Visit the Aiken Standard (Aiken, S.C.) at www.aikenstandard.com
Distributed by MCT Information Services NYSE:EXPR,