council approves plan for new six-storey hotel
April 13, 2010
A new six-storey
hotel is expected to begin rising from the ground later this year
after Charlottetown city council unanimously approved Monday night
APM’s plans for lower Queen Street.
Council gave its OK to a height variance and a lot consolidation
that will see the property development company begin work (subject
to a signed development agreement) on a $22-million project called
the Welsh-Owen Hotel and Plaza Development.
CEO Tim Banks is looking to develop a 120-room hotel, an underground
parking garage with 66 spaces, 14 fully furnished apartment units
and six condominium units.
The height variance for that location permits a height of no more
than 39.4 feet. Council approved the height variance that will see
the hotel rise 75 feet in the air.
Coun. Kim Devine, chair of the planning and heritage committees
(which also approved the project), said the building would certainly
stand out. “This is a large development, large in scale and
there’s no question it will stand out,’’ Devine said after council’s
“I think it is a good development opportunity in the sense that
we’re going to be incorporating heritage property. There’s going to
be infill on a parking lot on a prominent corner and I think it will
really change the streetscape down there and bring a lot of
The properties in question include 43 Queen St., 45-49 Queen St.
(the former Kays Bros. Building), 49-57 Water St. and 31 Queen St.
(a vacant lot at the corner of Queen and Water streets currently
used as a parking lot). Devine said 74 letters were sent out to
property owners in the area. The city received four opinions back,
all concerned over the scale of the development.
“They were generally (concerned) about the scale of the development
and how that development will affect their properties but I think
what planning board and heritage board members looked at overall was
the opportunity for development of this property.’’
Parking will be an issue. The building requires 184 parking spaces,
yet the hotel will only provide 66 so APM will be paying the city
more than $500,000, cash-in-lieu for the 118 spaces the hotel cannot
Mayor Clifford Lee said the city could force APM, or any developer,
to provide the parking but all that means is the developer would
buy a lot, pave it and put up a lot and that’s not what the city
wants. “At some point and time that ($500,000) will be
allocated towards either expanding our current parking garage
facilities or building new parking garage facilities,’’ Lee said.
The Homburg company, currently building its hotel on Grafton Street,
is paying the city $900,000 for parking spaces it can’t provide. The
city is currently in talks with the Charlottetown Area Development
Corporation (CADC) over possibly expanding the Pownal Parkade.
Banks hasn’t revealed the brand name of the proposed hotel but was
hoping it was going to be the Courtyard by Marriott. Construction is
expected to begin in September with the hotel opening in July, 2011.