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Raleigh Residents Protest Glut of Hotels

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RALEIGH — Some Raleigh residents say they're fed up with hotel development. A few years ago, it was tough to find a room in Raleigh. Now, hotels crowd many of the city's main roads.

A group of residents spent the morning protesting at city hall about development along the Glenwood Avenue corridor. There are already 17 hotels on Glenwood. Now the Carolina Corporate Center wants to build another one on a five-acre plot of land it owns. The site is located about a quarter mile north of Crabtree Valley Mall.

The developer believes Raleigh is ready for another hotel and believes the location is right.

"We do believe that this area, generally in which this property is located, is one that the hospitality industry has identified as a very important area for hospitality," said Tom Worth, attorney for those who want to build the hotel.

About 30 homeowners from a neighboring subdivision disagree. They say it's not a case of 'not in my backyard'. The land is already zoned for an office park. They believe, rather, that the addition of another hotel would add to the traffic problems that already exist in the area.

"A hotel is a very loose definition. It could mean anything from just a simple, low-cost hotel to, possibly, one of the high-tech conference centers with a helicopter pad," said Kay Wicker who opposes the hotel. "We don't know, and without that kind of knowledge it's very difficult to support another hotel in the Glenwood Avenue corridor."

One of the other concerns residents have regarding traffic is the fact that the site is on a steep incline on Glenwood, in an area where a hotel entrance and exit could create the need for another traffic light.

City planners have put off making a recommendation on this project for another month. They're hoping the two sides in the debate will get together and come to some sort of agreement before planners have to make a decision.

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Len Besthoff, Reporter
Gil Hollingsworth, Photographer
MJ Ainsley, Web Editor

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