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The Leavenworth Times - Leavenworth, KS
  • Commission grants variance to new hotel

  • When they met Tuesday, Leavenworth city commissioners granted an appeal from a hotel developer seeking a variance from a development regulation.
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    • Other business

      In other business Tuesday, the Leavenworth City Commission:


      • Approved a bid from ...

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      Other business

      In other business Tuesday, the Leavenworth City Commission:



      • Approved a bid from Little Joe's Asphalt Paving, of Bonner Springs, for $284,214 for a 2014 Kansas Connecting Link Program resurfacing project. Public Works Director Mike McDonald said the KLINK program, as it's commonly called, is a Kansas Department of Transportation matching grant program. The program requires the city to pay for half of the cost.



      The project will resurface portions of Fourth Street as well as a section of Spruce Street.



      • Approved a change order for the Ottawa Street reconstruction project not to exceed $14,235.



      • Reached a consensus to advance three ordinances for levying special assessments. The ordinances will be advanced for future votes. One of the ordinances would levy special assessments to pay for demolition costs of properties that were approved for demolition by the commission. Another would levy special assessments to recoup mowing fees associated with code enforcement. The third would levy special assessments for public sewer improvements at 811 Ottawa St.



      • Met behind closed doors in executive session for 10 minutes to discuss land acquisition.

  • When they met Tuesday, Leavenworth city commissioners granted an appeal from a hotel developer seeking a variance from a development regulation.
    The developer, Leavenworth Hotel Partners, sought a variance for the Fairfield Inn & Suites, which is being constructed at Fourth Street and Metropolitan Avenue.
    At issue was a regulation concerning roof-mounted mechanical equipment. The regulation requires that such equipment be screened by a parapet wall or similar feature.
    The new hotel building will have about 20 roof-mounted mechanical units.
    "I believe all of those can be fully screened except for one," Leavenworth City Manager Scott Miller said.
    John Davis, Jr., a representative of the developer, said the largest roof unit can be seen by people entering the city from the east.
    "It's taupe in color," he said, which blends in with the building.
    He said any screen that would be put up also would be taupe. He said placing a taupe screen in front of a taupe unit doesn't seem practical. He said the addition of a screen also would be expensive.
    As part of the appeal process, commissioners discussed the matter during a public hearing. But, no one from the public commented.
    Commissioners approved the appeal with a 4-0 vote. Commissioner Davis Moulden was absent.
    After the variance was approved, Leavenworth Mayor Mark Preisinger asked when the hotel will open.
    Jeff Sharp, another representative for the developer, said officials are shooting for Sept. 15. He said a ribbon-cutting may be scheduled for Oct. 2.
    Also Tuesday, commissioners discussed adding a new parking classification to development regulations.
    The issue arises from First United Methodist Church's plans to building a multi-use building on church grounds. The building would be short the required parking under existing regulations by 213 spaces.
    Former City Planner Ralph Moore had suggested adding a recreational community center category to parking classifications in the city's development regulations.
    "It would lessen the number of parking spaces required," Miller said.
    He said the church still would be short by 95 spaces. But, church officials believe they would have a better chance of being granted a variance if the number was reduced to 95.
    Miller said commissioners were not being asked to make a ruling on the variance Tuesday. They were being asked to consider amending the text of the development regulations to include the new parking classification.
    The issue was placed on the agenda for first consideration. Commissioners agreed there was a consensus to advance the issue for a future vote.
     

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