September 27, 2008

My Two Cents: Stop Throwing Roadblocks at the Hilton Garden Inn


I wholeheartedly agree with the Letter to the Editor written by Mr. Arthur to the Island Gazette on 09/24/2008. Unfortunately, his words fell on death ears as the Coastal Resources Commission have since sided with PACE (Preservation and Accountability for our Coastal Environment) and have created yet another nettlesome roadblock for the Hilton Garden Inn representatives.

As a Carolina Beach homeowner and taxpayer, I'm growing weary of the financial weight that we are all feeling as we undergoe necessary town improvements. We need to seek out and court new businesses that will help draw additional tax revenues to help fund these & future infrastructure projects.

A hotel project like the Hilton Garden Inn is exactly what we need to increase our town's overall tax base . It is exactly what we need to bring in a new generation of visitors to shop at our stores, visit our attractions and dine at our wonderful restaurants. The Hilton Garden Inn is exactly what we need on the north end of the boardwalk as we move forward with the goals of the Master Development Plan.

So people, please stop quibbling over 10' and allow this project to quickly move forward. As it stands now, we are 18 months to two years away from this project being completed. To put it in simpler terms, we are two years away from me being able to enjoy an evening cocktail at the hotel's ocean side tiki bar. So if you tell me I'm going to have to wait longer than two years, I'm apt to get a bit grumpy.

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Island Gazette, Wednesday, 24 September 2008

We Want This Project To Proceed Full Speed Ahead

Dear Mr. Christenbury (North Carolina Division of Coastal Management):

It appears to me and I think the vast majority of my fellow Carolina Beach residents that government bureaucracy and a few backward minded people once again want to deny good things for Carolina Beach. The Hilton Garden Inn project is one that every Carolina Beach citizen that I have talked to welcomes and I spoke with many at the various meetings prior to the project being approved. Hilton Gardens is the type of project that will help our town grow and which will also improve our town’s infrastructure by using a good deal of someone else’s money other than the average tax payer footing the whole bill.

This whole fuss is about Hilton Gardens needing to add about 10 feet to several items on the roof of the hotel in order to comply with the bureaucratic “mumbo jumbo” that was referred to above. Listen, this project is good for Carolina Beach and our citizens. PACE’s attorney, Dan Bell, Esq., has brought forth a lot more “mumbo jumbo” legal tactics in order to delay the building of the Hilton Gardens project. That’s what it is, nothing more nothing less. If these misguided individuals have their way, Carolina Beach will be denied another chance to get a first class project that will benefit our town and our citizens.

We strongly urge the State Coastal Resources Commission (CRC) to approve Carolina Beach Town Council’s request to approve this amendment to Carolina Beach’s CAMA Land Use Plan. The opposition to this amendment has brought only procedural issues to CRC’s attention in order to block the amendment approval. We the citizens of Carolina Beach don’t care if the skylights, elevator, antenna or parapet wall is 10 feet higher. Heck, no one will ever see it anyway except maybe an airplane pilot. CRC and Mr. Christenbury, we want this project to proceed full speed ahead. We want progress and advancement and good things for our citizens here in Carolina Beach no matter what a few people say.

Respectfully yours,
H. Mark Arthur
Carolina Beach, NC

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