Appeal denial sinks $5M downtown Little Rock project

Posted: February 2, 2018 at 4:30 a.m.

A map and information about the planned Fort Steele Commons

A plan to build a $5 million, 16-home development on a vacant Little Rock block is dead.

Stacy Hurst, the director of the Department of Arkansas Heritage, has rejected Carol Worley's request that Hurst reconsider a Capitol Zoning District Commission decision halting the Fort Steele Commons development on the city block bounded by South Gaines and South Arch streets and West 15th and West 16th streets.

[PREVIOUS COVERAGE: Procedure in question for development OK]

In an email to Worley on Thursday, Hurst said laws and rules governing the appeals of commission decisions to the Department of Arkansas Heritage director don't provide for reconsideration.

Worley said that given the uncertainty over a recent Arkansas Supreme Court decision stating the state has sovereign immunity from lawsuits, she didn't want to go to the expense of appealing Hurst's decision to Pulaski County Circuit Court.

Worley, who also is commission chairman but didn't participate in the deliberations involving the development, said the attorney general's office is developing an opinion on appealing commission decisions.

-- Noel Oman

Use the form below to sign up for any or all of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette's free newsletters: