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Government watch: Durham Board of Adjustment, April 27

Stone Bros. & Byrd planning some moves

A new mixed-use development appears to be in the works at the long-time downtown garden store Stone Bros. & Byrd.

According to an application with the Board of Adjustment, what’s planned for the site at 512 W. Geer St. are tenant spaces at the front of what is currently the store, a residential lobby and structured parking.

The Board of Adjustment will hear this matter and others at its monthly meeting at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday.

When The Spring Magazine reached Stone Bros.’ long-time owner George Davis this week, Davis referred questions to Beacon Street Development of Raleigh.

Beacon Street recently built “620 Wade,” a five-story condominiums development located at 620 Wade Ave. in Raleigh. The swanky condos, the web site for which boasts of their 10-foot ceilings and white oak floors, and amenities such as a fitness center and a rooftop terrace, are near the corner with St. Mary Street. The luxury development is located next to the Raleigh Rehabilitation Center, at 616 Wade Ave.

A fire station where?

Durham Fire Department wants to build a new fire and EMS station in a residential area in South Durham.

The new station, proposed for 6919 Herndon Road, would be just two miles from the existing station in the Parkwood subdivision, and is proposed to be facing two homes and tucked behind the cul-de-sacs of two neighborhoods.

Of the department’s 19 locations, the new station’s site would be the most residential in all of Durham. Most other stations are on sites that are far from other buildings, or in commercial or industrial areas.

The fire station in the Parkwood subdivision, located at 1409 Seaton Road, is across from a neighborhood shopping center. There are also three other stations in South Durham on Hope Valley Road, on South Miami Boulevard in a commercial area, and on Farrington Road, where it is located on a site big enough to offer natural buffers from residences. 

Fire Chief Robert Zoldos did not respond to a request for comment. Deputy Chief Chris Iannuzzi replied over e-mail that the new station will replace the Parkwood station, which was a volunteer station with Durham County Fire Rescue that was absorbed into the Durham Fire Department in 2018.

Th fire department also wants to build a new station at the corner of N.C. 54 and Davis Drive, slated for 2023-2024.

Kress Building variance

The developer of the new condos proposed for behind the historic Kress Building in downtown Durham wants a variance for the structured parking ground floor design standards.

The downtown district requires a minimum interior depth of 20 feet and ceiling height of 14 feet, and the developer seeks a variance for about 12 feet depth of interior space.

CityPlat and White Oak Properties, both of Raleigh, announced earlier this year plans for a six-story, 26-condo mixed-use development at 0.15 acres at 162 Ramseur St., at the site of what’s currently parking behind the Kress Building.

According to the application with the Board of Adjustment, the developer wants the change in the design requirements to fit in an HVAC chiller, parking space and loading aisle, among other things, and the 12-foot interior, instead of 20 feet, is all that would remain to fit into the small lot.

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