Motel will become apartments

Published 11:01 am Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Following a public hearing, members of the Kenbridge Town Council approved a rezoning proposal allowing the conversion of a motel on the town’s main street into apartments.

The council made its decision during a July 18 meeting.

Robyn Fowler

The decision was unanimous, Town Manager Robyn Fowler said, with two council members, R. Michael McGrath and C.A. “Cathy” Gilley, absent. The council members who voted, Fowler said, were Danny Thompson, Raymond Hite, Ken Blackburn and Mike Bender.

Kenbridge Town Mayor Emory Hodges and Fowler said no public comment was offered during the hearing, which examined a proposal to have the Budget Inn motel on

519 Main St. rezoned from a general business to residential property.

The applicant, Fowler said, had approached the council about the proposal during the previous month’s meeting, and after discussing the rezoning, the council decided to hold a public hearing.

According to Hodges, the proposal would permit the business’ future owner to convert the motel into single occupant apartments, which could be rented for short or long term.

“A local businessman is in the process of purchasing the existing motel,” Hodges said, noting the motel property includes all of its room and the innkeeper house on the premises, “and convert them into apartments.”

According to the rezoning application, Tony and Dimple Hansa Mistry, the motel owners, have granted Lee Smyth 60 days to purchase the property with intent to convert into an apartment complex.

Smyth is a real estate professional with Long & Foster Realty.

Hodges said the apartments would be consistent of single occupancy spaces and efficiencies, or short term housing for people who may be working temporarily in town.

According to Fowler the apartments could give people additional housing options in the area.

“After proposed work is complete, the property will consist of apartments available for rent,” Fowler said in an email. “This gives people more options to choose from if they are looking for a place to live in Kenbridge.”