A city commission approved the construction of an outdoor beer garden area that would be open to the public at Hotel Red across from Camp Randall during Monday night’s meeting.
At a meeting of Madison’s Plan Commission Hotel Red owner Mike Erickson said the outdoor seating area would be located on the hotel property across the street from Camp Randall Stadium. He said the seating area would be located on the ground floor level and would be open to the general public.
The project would be an addition to the 48-room hotel that opened in August, Erickson said.
Ald. Mike Verveer, District 4, said the outdoor seating area proposal for Hotel Red has already been granted approval by the Alcohol License Review Committee.
Commission members questioned Erickson on a number of points on the project, including the plan for restroom facilities as proportionate to guests.
The approval from Plan Commission was the final step required for Hotel Red’s process with the city.
The neighbors around Hotel Red in attendance voiced their support for the project.
Richard Scott, a neighbor who lives close to the proposed project, called the hotel’s owners and management a “class act” and spoke in support of the proposal.
The Plan Commission also weighed a proposed apartment complex slated for Madison’s east side, a proposal that sparked concerns from area residents but was later approved by the body.
Brian Stoddard of Planned Unit Development introduced the plan for an apartment development at 6854 Stockbridge Dr., on Madison’s east side.
Stoddard explained there would be advance landscaping along the street to allow additional parking for residents and would take pressure off street parking.
Ald. Lauren Cnare, District 3, said the apartment development would be in a part of the city that is mostly single-family homes, and a number of neighbors turned out to voice concerns about the proposal.
Stoddard said planners have remained engaged with neighborhood residents, asking for their input on various aspects of the project.
“We have been very sensitive to the neighborhood,” he said.
Overall, the project was met with minimal resistance from commission members, aside from logistics for access areas on one side of the building and how to connect to a city park path.
Cnare said the assurance the apartment complex would not have a negative impact on the neighborhood would be crucial in the decision making process.
“This apartment building will go up, and the neighbors will have a continuing good neighborhood,” she said.
The proposal was sent back with comments on areas of improvement from members for later consideration.
Since 2008, the Madison City Council has been trying to find a use for the Garver Feed Mill, which is located near Williamson Street, a debate that continues without resolution in the city.
Community Development Manager Dan Rolfs explained the May 2012 deadline to find a use for the property was probably the last chance to salvage the structure.
“Given all the hurdles that have to be jumped … if we don’t get past this May 2012 deadline, it will be very difficult to complete the project,” Rolfs said.
Rolfs’ group applied for a grant through Sen. Herb Kohl’s office for $3 million dollars to renovate the mill but did not get that grant money.