Will the project generate more or less traffic?
According to the Traffic Impact Study prepared by Stantec and reviewed and accepted by the City of Naples, the project will generate less traffic than was generated from the previous hotel. This is primarily a function of less hotel rooms (216 instead of 319), less meeting space (12,000 square feet instead of 24,000 square feet), and a better parking and traffic circulation design and program, including the consolidation of hotel parking underneath the hotel and Market Square, which will eliminate unnecessary valet traffic along Gulf Shore Boulevard North to and from numerous parking lots as was the case with the previous hotel, along with a first-class valet parking program.
How much parking will be provided?
Athens will provide 552 parking spaces for the hotel, Market Square and the golf and tennis facilities as required by the parking plan that was approved by the City Council. All parking will be provided in garages under the hotel and Market Square, and in adjacent surface parking areas along with a first-class valet parking program. Additionally, each residential condominium will have its own parking garage for its residents and guests as required by the City’s code. Athens will also be providing, at its sole cost, an additional 11 parking spaces to the community for enhanced beach access at the 8th Avenue North public parking area next to the hotel.
As required by the City of Naples review and approval process for the project, The Athens Group and its approved parking and traffic consultant, Stantec, created a valet parking plan, a parking needs analysis, and a traffic impact study that analyzed and addressed the resort’s parking needs and traffic impacts.
As the number of hotel rooms is being reduced from 319 guest rooms to 216 guest rooms and the current meeting space is being reduced from 24,000 square feet to approximately 12,000 square feet, the new hotel’s parking requirements and traffic demand (as opposed to the residential parking requirements, which is provided separately from the hotel’s parking) will be reduced.
Recognizing the importance of improving the resort’s traffic patterns for the neighborhood, the community and the resort’s guests, The Athens Group studied vehicular and pedestrian movements along with improvements to Gulf Shore Boulevard North in order to create a plan that is expected to reduce the resort’s overall traffic with sufficient on-site parking in garages under the hotel and Market Square, along with a first-class valet parking program. By consolidating the hotel’s parking underneath these buildings in garages, traffic will be reduced on Gulf Shore Boulevard North, as the valet attendants will no longer need to shuttle cars to and from the hotel and/or the Clubhouse conference center to multiple hotel parking lots that are spread out on the property as was the case with the previous hotel.
Will the hotel’s parking valet attendants continue to need to cross the street?
On-site, under-podium garage parking for the hotel and Market Square should alleviate much of the need for valet attendants to cross Gulf Shore Boulevard North.
Will the community be able to park at the hotel?
Valet parking at the hotel will be available to everyone who would like to enjoy the resort and its facilities, although access may be restricted during high-volume events.
Will there be bike lanes?
Yes, the bike lanes along Gulf Shore Boulevard North will be retained. With respect to South Golf Drive, it is our understanding that the City is considering a series of improvements, including the addition of bike lanes. Athens will continue to work with the City and our neighbors on any street improvements that require our assistance or input.
How will the redevelopment plan affect the public beach parking on the south side of property?
The City’s public parking on 8th Avenue North next to the hotel will be expanded by Athens, at its sole cost, with the addition of 11 parking spaces along with additional landscaping. Athens also will construct a sidewalk from Gulf Shore Boulevard North along the resort’s southern property line to provide improved pedestrian access along 8th Avenue North.
Will the pedestrian travel experience and safety from both sides of the resort across Gulf Shore Boulevard North be improved?
Yes. Currently, there are multiple pedestrian crossing points across Gulf Shore Boulevard North that can be made safer and also more efficient for vehicular traffic on the street. The Athens Group’s plan consolidates the multiple pedestrian crossings into one at-grade crossing that is currently called the “Coconut Connector” along with the creation of a landscape median that separates the north-bound traffic from the south-bound traffic. As a result, there will be less interruption of vehicular traffic along the street, and the pedestrian experience will be safer with enhanced and improved lighting and other pedestrian safety technologies.
Will the hotel and conference center/Clubhouse have any self-parking?
In order to reduce traffic and to improve the resort’s parking capacity, all hotel and Clubhouse conference center guest parking will be serviced by the first-class valet parking team. As a result, self-parking options are not currently envisioned.
Where will the project’s loading docks be located?
The hotel’s loading docks will be located in a concealed area that will be part of the renovated Clubhouse conference center, with an additional hotel loading dock in the hotel garage that is smaller than the other docks. These dock locations will improve the Gulf Shore Boulevard North traffic flow by eliminating the need for delivery trucks to maneuver in the street in order to access the property’s loading docks, as was the case with the previous hotel, since there will now be adequate space on-site for delivery trucks to conduct all necessary maneuvers internally.
Will the hotel’s delivery trucks back out into the street as they did previously?
The Naples Beach Club, a Four Seasons Resort will further improve the previous hotel’s traffic situation by providing a new and improved loading dock that will be concealed from the public’s view, with additional on-site delivery truck circulation space so that all delivery trucks can be maneuvered and accommodated on-site without the use of the surrounding public roads, which was not the case previously. The traffic delays resulting from delivery trucks backing out onto the street will be eliminated.
Where will the resort’s trash be located and picked up from?
The resort’s trash will continue to be consolidated and picked up from a shielded facility in the center of the golf course, as was the case with the previous hotel.