Fort Lauderdale Planning & Zoning Board October 17, 2007 Page 15
Lane. Additional landscaping along the street will provide buffer for the building. When completed, 266 of the 289 spaces will provide the required off-site parking and 22 spaces will accommodate new retail. Landscape and streetscape improvements on the site plan were summarized. The applicant also plans to re-landscape the surplus portion of FDOT right-of-way in front of the property.
With regard to the hotel renovation, Ms. Hall summarized improvements proposed to the building’s façade, infrastructure, lighting, banquet spaces and pool area.
Ms. Parker gave a staff presentation as follows: The applicant proposes to demolish the existing parking structure and construct a new 4-level open parking garage with retail and restaurant space fronting on Sunrise Lane. The applicant is proposing streetscape improvement including on-street parking, new sidewalks, and landscaping.
With regard to the hotel, the applicant proposes to renovate the interior and exterior of the building including new architectural elements along the building façade, new design to the lobby and penthouse levels. Ms. Parker advised the principal development has not received a beach development permit for the hotel and other uses because it existed on the date the Central Beach regulations were adopted; it is therefore considered a non-conforming structure.
Chair Curtis opened the public hearing.
Sadler James, of the Central Beach Alliance, spoke of four meetings held where there was good cooperation between the Blackstone Group, Mr. Alba and Ms. Hall. Mr. James advised that on September 27, the Board had voted unanimously in favor of this project. He added that a gentleman’s agreement was made to improve the appearance of the parapet wall hiding machinery.
Ms. Golub asked if any discussion was held about the 100-car spot increase and the shortfall as well as if the project came up to current Code. Mr. James stated that any increase in parking is an improvement although it currently is not given to the public.
Mr. James advised that in previous meetings on this item, there was an overwhelming vote in favor of the currently proposed parking garage and for the renovation of the hotel.
Tim Schiavone, owner of the Parrot Lounge and adjacent neighbor, stated he has seen no change in his neighborhood. He commented that the Blackstone Group has been very cooperative and respectful of neighbors’ concerns. He