A developer wants to replace a 157 E. Rosemary St. building long popular for its dive bars with an eight-story retail, office and residential building.
The existing two-story building now houses Bub O’Malley’s and Country Fried Duck. The site, roughly a third of an acre, is between the Daily Tar Heel building and a gravel lot at Henderson and East Rosemary streets. The town’s Wallace Parking Deck is across the street.
Architect David Ripperton submitted a concept plan July 26 on behalf of property owner James Paliouras, with Paliouras Enterprises LLC. The town’s Community Design Commission is scheduled to review the plan Sept. 27. It could go to the council for review and feedback in October.
A concept plan is not an official application.
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Paliouras, whose family built the building in 1967, wants to replace it with a 58,652-square-foot building that includes ground-floor retail, second-floor offices and 23 apartments, including three priced at an affordable rent. No parking is proposed, however, bike parking would be included.
The project is expected to attract students, faculty, residents and merchants, the plan states. It would need a rezoning from Town Center-2 to Town Center-3 to allow for a larger and taller building.
Paliouras, a Chapel Hill resident, wants to create “a building that provides visual interest and creates enjoyable human-scale spaces, a building that is creative in form and space, that projects visual variety, and includes a high level of architectural detailing to help maintain a strong sense of scale,” the plan states.
A large, eighth-floor clubhouse and a ground-level patio are planned along Rosemary Street.
The building, if approved, would be the tallest structure on East Rosemary Street. The plan notes it could “set the stage for future developments” on East Rosemary Street and suggests a design that reflects university and surrounding buildings:
▪ Brick at lower levels with arched openings similar to the Wallace deck
▪ Horizontal divisions and rooftop brackets similar to Franklin Street buildings
▪ Stepped-back upper levels in a lighter material, such as stucco
▪ Circular windows at various points, with Carolina Blue illumination on special occasions