$50 million 221-unit apartment and mixed use complex receives final go-ahead from Planning Commission —
What is arguably the biggest development in downtown Fayetteville’s history was approved April 23 by the Fayetteville Planning and Zoning Commission. The Meridian on the Square mixed-use development of retail and Class A apartments will represent a $50 million investment in the evolution of the downtown area.
Groundbreaking comes next. Since the site is already zoned for the development, it will not have to receive further approval from the City Council.
Developer Miles Hill, who also built the Meridian Apartments at Ga. Highway 54 West and Lafayette Avenue, requested and received approval for several variances for the development situated on 6.81 acres on the northwest corner of Lanier Avenue and North Glynn Street, up one block to the north to Lafayette Avenue and extending west a portion of the way toward Tiger Trail.
The property was already zoned C-1 (downtown commercial, which includes mixed-use).
Three of the five buildings, those closest to the intersection of Hwy. 54 and North Glynn Street, will include approximately 18,500 sq. ft. of retail on the first floor.
The all-retail building on the corner of Hwy. 54 and North Glynn Street will be 1-2 stories. The remaining buildings will be 4 stories. One of the variances allows elevations to 66 feet in height.
As for the 221 apartments, Hill said 128 will be 1-bedroom averaging 690 sq. ft. and 93 will be 2-bedroom averaging 1,060 sq. ft. That number may vary one or two units as we complete the architectural drawings, Hill said, adding that pricing for the luxury apartments has not been set.
“All buildings will be elevatored and all corridors will be enclosed and fully conditioned,” said Hill. “With these features, not currently offered anywhere else in the market, we anticipate a varied resident profile, ranging from young singles and couples just out of school and entering the workplace, to roommates and other young professionals, to older singles and couples.”
Hill said the value of the development, which he described as the top market in Fayette County, totals approximately $50 million.
“Of course, one of our greatest advantages, is being able to walk downtown, go out to eat and then walk home,” said Hill, echoing the preference of a large number of residents who participated in the city’s Comprehensive Plan process.
Hill during his comments to the commission said the project’s goal is to create a place where people want to go.
“This is a complex, but fantastic project and a gateway to downtown,” said Hill. “I feel great responsibility for this site. We know it will set a standard going forward, and we take that responsibility very seriously.”
Designed to fit into the historic district, the buildings will share a common overall architectural theme using a mixture of brick, stucco, split face, concrete masonry and parapet roofs.
Hill also noted that the development will have more of a historic look than the rendering shown at the meeting depicted.
Among the other features of the project will be 14-foot brick paver sidewalks, sidewalk seating on the streets, outdoor patios, sidewalk trees in tree wells, bike parking and outdoor restaurant seating.
Hill told commissioners it would take 4-6 months of preparatory work prior to construction. Once underway, and to be accomplished in one phase, construction is expected to take 18-24 months.
During the public comments portion of the agenda item, only one person spoke. The owner of the property adjacent to the Meridian on the Square site, the business owner had questions pertinent to his property.