A developer wants to build a boutique hotel in the Glenwood South neighborhood.
MJM Group, a commercial real estate development company in Raleigh, is asking the city for permission to put a 60-room hotel at 615 W. Peace St. The 0.36-acre site is at the corner of North Boylan Avenue between McDonald’s and Starbucks.
“There’s a lot of interest and demand for a boutique hotel downtown in general,” said Mack Paul, an attorney representing the developers. “It would serve business travelers who want to be downtown.”
Boutique hotels, which are typically upscale and smaller than traditional hotels, have become popular in the Triangle and across the nation. Aloft Raleigh opened on Hillsborough Street near the N.C. State University campus. The Unscripted hotel is set to open this summer in downtown Durham. The Mayton Inn opened in downtown Cary in February 2016.
Raleigh leaders have said the city needs more downtown hotels. A 2015 report showed that Raleigh is home to 12 major hotels, about one-third of them downtown. Five new hotels, including two near the convention center, are expected to open by 2018, bringing about 750 rooms.
A Hampton Inn is two blocks away from the proposed Peace Street site. Also nearby, Heritage Properties plans to build a hotel with up to 150 rooms as part of the One Glenwood project at Glenwood Avenue and Morgan Street.
Paul said there’s a need for another hotel on downtown’s northern edge, where Raleigh plans to upgrade the sidewalks along Peace Street and Kane Realty wants to build apartments with retail space.
A house that sits on the Peace Street property would be torn down to make way for the hotel. The site is currently zoned to allow a three-story building, but the developer wants the city to change the zoning to allow for five stories.
Some residents who live in The Paramount condominium building behind the site voiced concerns during a community meeting last month that a five-story hotel would hinder their view to the north, Paul said. Others said they worried about more traffic on Peace Street.
Developers are working on a plan that would “maintain a more open view” from The Paramount, Paul said. They want residents to be able to see Devereux Meadow, a 14-acre park Raleigh plans to build near Peace Street and Capital Boulevard.
The Hillsborough Citizens Advisory Council will hear a presentation about the boutique hotel plans at its meeting at 7 p.m. Thursday at Pullen Memorial Baptist Church, 18801 Hillsborough St.
Advisory councils make recommendations about proposed developments. The Raleigh City Council would decide whether to rezone the site.
Peace Street connects Cameron Village and downtown, so projects along the corridor deserve plenty of consideration, said Bob Geary, chairman of the Hillsborough CAC.
“We ought to be careful about it,” he said. “There’s an awful lot of traffic between Glenwood and Cameron Village.”
Geary said he thinks the current zoning that allows for three stories is appropriate, but he’s willing to hear what the developers have to say about increasing the height.
“I want to see the presentation,” he said.