Hotel size increase denied

North Elba ZBA denies variance for overhaul of Quality Inn

North Elba Zoning Board of Appeals Chairman John Hopkinson, left, and attorney Bill Kissel are seen at a ZBA meeting Monday. (Enterprise photo — Griffin Kelly)

LAKE PLACID — In a 3-to-2 vote, the North Elba Zoning Board of Appeals denied a height variance Monday for a Hilton-network hotel that would replace the main Quality Inn building on Saranac Avenue.

The board decided that the benefit to the developer, Dual Development LLC, did not outweigh the detriment to the community. Board members Linda Friedlander, Bill Morris and John Hopkinson voted to deny the variance, and board members Charlie Rascoe and Todd Rissberger voted to approve it.

Seven members of the public attended the meeting.

Dual Development Operation Partner Bhavik Jariwala had no comment Tuesday on any future plans for the possible hotel.

Dual Development was looking to tear down the two-story main building of the Quality Inn at 2125 Saranac Ave. and replace it with a four-story building that would contain 196 rooms. The current building has 73 rooms.

The Quality Inn on Saranac Avenue in Lake Placid is seen in February. The two-story building up top is planned to become a 192-room, four-story Tru-Homewood Suites in the future. (Enterprise photo — Griffin Kelly)

The design of the building would’ve changed to an “L” shape but with relatively the same footprint at 34,868 square feet.

There were no plans for any other buildings on the property, just the main one.

The company’s plans also include rebranding the hotel as Tru/Homewood Suites by Hilton instead of Quality Inn.

Currently, the land use code permits buildings to reach a maximum height of 35 feet, and that’s how tall the current hotel is. The new hotel would add 19 feet. Also, any building taller than 40 feet requires approval by the state Adirondack Park Agency.

A variance would not have changed the land use code; it would’ve applied specifically to the proposed hotel.

This rendering shows what a new 192-room, four-story Hilton-brand hotel could look like on the grounds of the current Quality Inn on Saranac Avenue in Lake Placid. Photos from other vantage points are on display at the North Elba Town Hall.

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