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Vandals destroy latest plan to redevelop Fayetteville hotel

Posted December 10, 2013

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— A Fayetteville landmark will soon go on the auction block for the third time in seven years after a developer on Monday dropped his plans to renovate the Hotel Prince Charles.

David Levinson bought the 87-year-old hotel a year ago and planned to spend $4.5 million to transform it into a mix of office space and 80 downtown condominiums.

"I was doing it only because I was asked to do it. I was doing it as a favor, and I thought it was interesting," Levinson said Tuesday.

Hotel Prince Charles window Developer drops plans to restore Fayetteville landmark

Copper thieves destroyed the building's plumbing, wiring and ventilation system, which would add more than $2 million to the renovation cost, he said.

"What was perfectly feasible before the damage was done was not feasible after the damage was done," he said.

Levinson's departure is the latest in a line of failed attempts to revive the hotel, which was twice declared unsafe for habitation a few years ago.

Fayetteville Mayor Nat Robertson said he would love to see the hotel restored to its former glory, but he said the city isn't in the business of subsidizing developments like that.

Councilman Bobby Hurst agreed that Fayetteville can't afford to pick up the extra $2 million redevelopment cost.

"With crime and economic development – jobs – I think those are two priorities that don't mix with $2 million," Hurst said.

Unless a deep-pocketed developer buys the hotel at auction, he said, the building should probably be torn down.


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  • Vietnam Vet Dec 13, 2013

    You have to wonder how all this damage could have been accomplished directly across the street from the police station. How long has this building been vacant and declared unsafe for habitation. Shouldn't someone have noticed activity there???

  • seapeeay Dec 13, 2013

    Spend the $2,000,000 to catch the dope smoking thieves that did the damage. I've heard of I don't know how many houses, empty rentals, or homes with people gone for a weekend, come home to find all the plumbing and the A/C gone.

    Gotta put better controls on the ones BUYING the copper!

  • Glass Half Full Dec 12, 2013

    It's a shame this much damage was done to this building directly across the street from the police department. Unfortunately it appears to be time to tear it down if it's too costly to repair and renovate. It will be sad to see it gone but better than watching it further deteriorate as it is now. The lot next door the developer is retaining is not a parking lot; it has a large fountain on it and is planted with grass and has some sidewalks passing through it. The parking lot you refer to is next to it, beside the train station.

  • mautry Dec 12, 2013


  • philipw Dec 11, 2013

    This hotel is directly across the street from the Fayetteville Police department - directly. I find it not believable for someone to say $2 million in pipe was stolen from it. If such a thing happened, there would be an insurance claim. Is that what this is about? Let the building get foreclosed but collect on an insurance claim? That is, sell it for taxes but give me my $2 million insurance claim? The owner says he's letting the building be sold, but keeping the parking lot.

  • alanmagid Dec 11, 2013

    Simply require scrap metal dealers to submit photo and prints of every seller of every lot to the county sheriff. These people who stole the copper are not vandals. They are reckless thieves who committed multiple felonies for selfish reasons.

  • Good Bye WRAL Dec 11, 2013

    "buy houses, cars, clothing, food, and entertainment for themselves and their children, and are able to pay for utilities and pay taxes. What a ridiculous and insulting thing to say."

    So, the $100k in tax payer supplied salary gets spent on cars, food, taxes, entertainment, etc., correct? Assuming they save 10%, that leaves 90,000 of the money going to purchases/taxes, etc. So, yes the 'economy' gains this $90k but the us tax payers lose $90k, less the ~20% that comes back as taxes on their income & purchases. So $100k out the door equals $20k back in, a loss of $80k, right?

    Please tell me when 'Government Jobs' = Economic growth, especially at the state or local level? Too many modern Americans are drinking the Kool-aid....!

  • Brian Jenkins Dec 11, 2013

    "Employed (Government) workers earning a salary"

    I had to stop at "earning". Funny though.

  • goode88 Dec 11, 2013

    Stolen from a building directly across from Police HQ.

  • horsyset Dec 11, 2013

    When the Government hires people, it does not stimulate the economy. Government employees are an Expense to the taxpayers, not economic growth. pause to consider

    Employed (Government) workers earning a salary contribute to the economy by being able to buy houses, cars, clothing, food, and entertainment for themselves and their children, and are able to pay for utilities and pay taxes. What a ridiculous and insulting thing to say.