Several buildings on Mike’s Pike, Phoenix Avenue and Milton Road are coming down in preparation for The Hub, even though construction on the controversial student-oriented apartment complex might not start immediately.
Lindsay Schube, the attorney for Core Campus, the developer of The Hub, said the company got a demolition permit from the city of Flagstaff in April and has been steadily working on removing the old buildings on the 2.39 acres. Nearby businesses that are not part of the project were notified in advance of the demolition.
Representatives Brake Masters, People’s Mortgage Company and Ruff’s Sporting Goods have said the demolition is noisy and dusty but it hasn’t affected their business.
Frankie Zanzucchi, the general manager at Granny’s Closet, said business has actually been pretty good.
“We sold more wings and milkshakes this weekend,” he said. “The noise and dust really haven’t bothered business.”
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Schube said a timeline for construction of the actual building has not been set yet. That may depend on an appeals hearing set for the city’s Board of Adjustments in July.
Stand Up for Flagstaff and 120 Cottage Place, LLC. filed an appeal with the board on June 17 stating that The Hub did not meet the requirements for the city’s special transect zoning. It is planned for up to five stories and nearly 600 bedrooms in a neighborhood of low-rise, small-scale buildings. Opponents contend that makes the project as proposed ineligible for the more-dense transect zoning, with its relaxed parking requirements.
City staff maintain that the zoning allows more density with mixed commercial and residential projects, and the Hub is what the regional plan envisions for Southside, even though such designs have not yet been implemented.
The Board of Adjustments is a type of appeals commission that a developer or a resident can go to after a decision made by the city’s Community Development staff on a project or if there is an issue with zoning for a project. A developer or member of the public can appeal any decision made by the Board within 30 days to the Coconino Superior Court.
The city of Flagstaff has also scheduled a series of four public input meetings in July to discuss updating the city's regulations on large, mixed-use residential buildings, such as The Hub. Each meeting will be limited to 30 people. Residents are encouraged to reserve a seat at www.flagstaff.az.gov/hohplan. The first meeting is from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. July 12 at Firecreek Coffee, 2 E. Route 66.
Ed.note: This story has been changed from the original.