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KDH moves a step closer to new hotel

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Site of the proposed TownePlace Suites hotel.

TownePlace Suites set to open in 2018

The Kill Devil Hills Board of Commissioners unanimously approved a site plan for a proposed new 152-room hotel at its Nov. 14 meeting, bringing construction of the town’s first new hotel in nearly three decades closer to fruition.

      Expanding hotel capacity has been a hot topic in Kill Devil Hills, which approved an amendment in 2015 lowering the Floor Area Ratio in the Ocean Impact Residential Zone for new multi-family or hotel development from 60 to 40 percent of the total lot size and held a forum in January to explore ways to reverse the trend of decreasing hotel and motel rooms in the town and county.

      The project will be built on the site of the Ebb Tide Hotel and the Ship’s Wheel restaurant at Milepost 8.5. After submitting building plans, the developers hope to receive their building permit and begin construction by January, with a target opening date of spring 2018.

      Mayor Sheila Davies told the Sentinel she is excited  by the proposal. "The beauty of tonight is that it was passed easily, with very little discussion, and you have a developer that worked within the existing ordinances of the town,” she added.

      Thanking the board for its approval, real estate broker and developer Eddie Goodrich said the hotel "will be quite an addition to the community and something we need badly."

      The commissioners approved the site plan without discussion, subject to the developers, Williamsburg, VA-based First Flight Hotel LLC, meeting two conditions recommended by the town's planning board. They include correcting side yard setbacks on the hotel side of the development to 34 feet and preparing required water meter service sizing forms. Developer Ratnam Patel had previously agreed to meet the recommended conditions.

      Kill Devil Hills-based engineer Mike Robinson told the Sentinel that the 83,997-square-foot TownePlace Suites hotel, part of the Marriott franchise, will be built on the west side of N.C. Highway 12, with an "oceanfront amenity" located across the street. This will consist of a ground-floor entry, second floor pavilion and swimming pool and a third floor restaurant.

      "The swimming pool will be elevated to about the height of the dune," Robinson said, "with an infinity edge that doesn't appear to end."

      "This is a unique proposal in the sense that they have lots on both sides of the Beach Road, with the hotel built on the west side and, on the oceanside, the outdoor pool and restaurant,” Davies noted. “I think it's a great way to use the space that they have — and really a win-win."

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