Council to hear new proposal for changing Flatiron Building into mixed-use development

Photo: WLOS

After a plan to turn the historic Flatiron Building into a hotel was withdrawn, a new plan proposes changing the building into a mixed-use development, which would still include a hotel.

"While hotels really help the economy in a lot of ways, the local businesses and the presence of local people is really important to the community building aspect here," said Ron Ainspan, Owner of the Fresh Quarter.

Asheville City Clerk Maggie Burleson confirmed a new plan to renovate the Flatiron Building will go before city council later this month.

At the council meeting on June 25, council members will consider conditional zoning of the building to include a restaurant, retail spaces, commercial office space on the second floor and 71 lodging units on floors 3-8.

The original plan proposed 80 hotel rooms.

With the proposal, roughly 70 small-business tenants would be displaced.

Just last month, a developer pulled his application to turn the historic building into a hotel, a proposal that caused outcry in the community.

"I was really disappointed when it didn't go through the first time," said Victor Taylor, owner of Appalachian Natural Soaps.

Taylor's business is located on Wall Street, which is just a few feet away from the Flatiron.

"I’m glad it’s back on the table and I hope it goes through for the owner and the new people coming in," added Taylor.