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story.lead_photo.caption A map showing a proposal for mixed-use development along Kavanaugh Boulevard.

A proposal for a mixed-used development designed to engage the "very vibrant neighborhood" along Kavanaugh Boulevard in Pulaski Heights is going back to the drawing board.

A limited liability company, 5701 Kavanaugh, wants to construct a four-story building at the southwest corner of Kavanaugh Boulevard and Fillmore Street that would "have balconies, both recessed and projecting, and projecting 'bay windows' over the public sidewalk to enhance this interaction" with the neighborhood.

The first floor would contain 4,200 square feet of space reserved for retail sales or a restaurant. The second floor would contain 6,250 square feet to be used as a dentist's office. The upper floors totaling 8,850 square feet would be for "approximately 5 high end condominium units," according to the application for variances from some city ordinances.

"The fourth floor enclosed area would be set back from the building edge [not extending over the property line] to create large terraces for the residences," according to the application.

But Hrand DuValian II, an architect with Cromwell Architects and Engineers, formally requested Tuesday that the project be deferred one month from consideration by the Little Rock Board of Adjustment.

The project at 5701 Kavanaugh Blvd. was scheduled to go before the board at its regular monthly meeting Monday.

DuValian said he requested the proposal be deferred until the board's next meeting on Jan. 28 to address concerns raised by city planning officials.

The request came after the city planning officials recommended to the board the application for variances be denied.

The variances requested included minimum setbacks of 25 feet from the streets and from the alley, from maximum building heights of 35 feet and from minimum parking requirements, which would mandate at least 27 off-street parking spaces.

The project has no setbacks, space for five parking spaces and a building height of 52 feet, all of which DuValian said in the application was designed to fit in an urban setting "in which the buildings are built to the sidewalk [property line] for a walkable community."

"Off-street parking ... would render the property useless for anything more than a parking lot [and] would destroy the urban character of the neighborhood.

But the staff said in its report that it viewed the requested variances "as unreasonable and feels the applicant is proposing to over-build the site."

The staff said the building height would be "out of character with other commercial buildings along Kavanaugh ... which have heights of one and two stories."

The report also said the "upper floors of the proposed building will overlook the existing single family properties to the north across Kavanaugh ... creating an undue burden on those properties."

The proposed size and use of the development, officials feared, would "create parking demand that will put a strain on the available parking in the immediate area."

The limited liability company was incorporated by Robert T. Smith in 2016, according to online records retained by the secretary of state's office. 5701 Kavanaugh purchased the property from Heartland Bank the same year for $1,340,000, according to online records kept by the Pulaski County assessor's office.

Heartland Bank took over the property in January 2016 from Ellen Golden, who operated an antiques store. Allied Bank, which was controlled by Lex Golden, also had a branch at the property.

The property is a block from a $1 million project a limited liability company led by Charles H. "Chip" Murphy III is undertaking to build a two-story office at 5616 Kavanaugh Blvd.

Catta LLC purchased the property earlier this year for $515,000 from William Keith Robertson and Emily Katherine Robertson, who owned a longtime beauty salon on the site. The previous building on the property, built as a residence in 1920 and home for years to a doctor's office, was recently demolished.

Business on 12/05/2018

Print Headline: Proposal for development in LR's Heights neighborhood sent back to designers

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