For the first time in years, we could soon see some changes to the Landmark Hotel. Tuesday night, Charlottesville City Council was supposed to vote on whether or not to declare the property blighted, but that changed with an eleventh-hour agreement.
Just minutes before the meeting, the owner of the property - John Dewberry - agreed to take the necessary steps to make the building safe. Last month the planning commission recommended City Council declare the skeleton of what would have been the Landmark blighted.
The city is asking the owner to increase the height of the fence around the building, secure the upper floors, and remove the graffiti from the building. Tuesday night, Dewberry agreed to those terms and City Council deferred the blight determination vote. But some aren't convinced things will really move forward.
"At this point I think they've met the spirit, they've addressed all the items that were of major concern to us,” said Jim Tolbert, Charlottesville’s director of neighborhood development services.
According to city staff the changes are expected to be made soon.
"I certainly don't want us to be in a situation where another three or four years from now they haven't gotten under construction and we're back here at the same point,” said Rebecca Quinn, who lives near the building.
If for some reason these changes aren't made, City Council can come back and declare the building blighted, giving Dewberry 30 days to make the changes. If they still aren't made, the city would have to make the changes.
At Last Minute, Landmark Owner Agrees to ChangesMore>>