The construction of a 3-story hotel addition to a 19th-century house on West William Street again was debated before Delaware City Council on July 9.
The plan had been scheduled for its third reading, after which council ordinarily casts a vote, but the vote was delayed by Mayor Carolyn Kay Riggle, based on the request of Councilwoman Lisa Keller.
Keller was out of town and earlier asked that the vote be delayed until her return. Because the proposed hotel is in Keller's 2nd Ward, Riggle granted the request. The next council meeting is 7 p.m. July 23.
Developer Jim Manos, who has other properties in Delaware and Columbus, plans to build the hotel at 235 and 239 W. William St. It would be an addition to a house Ohio Wesleyan University professor Hiram Perkins had built in 1880.
The resulting Wesleyan Inn would have 47 rooms and 47 parking spaces.
Manos earlier said it would be a "first-class" hotel and its main customers would be parents of OWU students.
Keller said during the meeting June 25 she opposes the plan, based on neighbors' concerns.
Seven residents spoke against the plan June 25, and several were among the six residents who spoke against it at the last meeting.
Opponents have said the hotel would create heavy traffic as well as safety concerns and parking issues.
They also objected that the plan requires rezoning part of the site from single-family residential to planned-office institutional district.
Another resident who spoke June 25 urged council to let Manos renovate the Perkins house and build the hotel.
Bill Ferrigno, the city's director of engineering services, said during peak usage, westbound vehicles trying to turn into the hotel site might back up traffic to nearby Elizabeth Street.
A left-turn lane could ease that concern, he said.
Ferrigno also said the city already has considerable right of way on both sides of the street at the site.
That would allow the possibility of widening the pavement to create a "bump" curb recessed toward nearby houses, he said, long enough to hold five or six parked cars and reducing concerns about parking.
The city planning commission recommended June 6 that council approve the plan.
Council is considering three ordinances -- to approve a rezoning amendment, grant a conditional-use permit and approve a preliminary development plan.
Manos earlier cited Main Street Delaware awards he received for other renovation projects in the city.
"My properties are very nice. I keep them nice," he said, adding that the hotel would have security cameras and its parking lot would meet city security standards.
He said he is sensitive to neighbors' concerns and is willing to plant trees and conduct landscaping to create a visual buffer from nearby residences.