63ºF

Judge denies group's request to delay construction permits for controversial property

SAN ANTONIO – Construction of a controversial apartment complex near the Hays Street Bridge will move forward after a district court judge denied the Hays Street Bridge Restoration Group's request to delay construction permits for the property.

Many members of the community have spoken out against the planned five-story, multi-use building planned for 803 North Cherry Street, saying the building will obstruct the view of the Hays Street Bridge and ruin the historic look of the area.

District court Judge Laura Salinas denied the Hays Street Bridge Restoration Group's request, which asked that the permits be delayed as the Texas Supreme Court rules on a governmental immunity matter.

Those in opposition of the development believe that the property, which was donated to the city, is not being used as previously planned.

In July 2014, a county jury found that the property was not “owned, held or claimed as a park," and that the city should apply all funds, including those from the sale of the Cherry Street property, toward bridge restoration costs. 

The city said it complied with the judge's orders.

“The issue before the Supreme Court deals with a very narrow immunity issue,” said City Attorney Andy Segovia. “We are glad Judge Salinas saw that there was no linkage between the Supreme Court matter and moving forward on the project.”

The Monday ruling comes after city manager Sheryl Sculley stepped in and sided with the developer with the eight stipulations that must be satisfied before builders can move forward.

Mitch Meyer, with Loopy Limited, and his designer must make changes to the lighting to avoid spillover into neighboring residential properties and change the design of the structure, which includes the possibility of reducing the height of the building.

The Historic and Design Review Commission voted against the project twice.

Sculley stepped in, and in the documents provided to the developer, explained the HDRC did not have say over the use of the property, only its design.