Hotel planned at former co-op site in south Fayetteville

Photo: Todd Gill, Fayetteville Flyer

A hotel has been added to the overall redevelopment plan of the former Farmers Cooperative site in south Fayetteville.

Planning Commissioners this week approved a request from Specialized Real Estate Group to change the plans for the project at the southwest corner of South School Avenue and Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard.

The company last year announced plans to convert the property into a mixed-use development, and later in the year received approval from the commission to begin the project.

The goal was to complete an adaptive reuse of the 1950s co-op buildings, add new apartments and build a public park along Tanglewood Branch, all while preserving the character and history of the site. That’s still the idea, but the details have changed a bit.

The original designs called for 220 housing units on the 8-acre site. The new plan will reduce the amount of apartments to 128, and will add a boutique hotel on the property. The project will also add about 1.6 acres to the south adjacent to Frisco Trail where a Mexican restaurant operated for many years.

“We envision a community hub with casual indoor and outdoor gathering spaces including restaurants and a beer garden,” said Sarah King, head of marketing and communication for Specialized Real Estate Group.

The project will be completed in three phases, according to planning documents.

King said construction will begin first on the apartments, with the commercial areas – including the 1950’s adaptive reuse – soon to follow. Streambank restoration work, King said, will continue throughout construction as part of the creation of a new public park that will be donated to the city.

Aside from the former Mexican restaurant building, the project also includes land once home to Sala Thai restaurant and the former Korean Food Market location. The Central Emergency Medical Service headquarters and Vaughn Battery building are not part of the project.