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American Canyon City Council likes proposed Hampton Inn

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Hampton Inn site

The American Canyon City Council on Nov. 16 cast the initial votes needed to bring a Hampton Inn to Highway 29 near Donaldson Way, with additional votes possible on Dec. 7.

Hampton Inn looks to be a cinch to become American Canyon’s fifth hotel approved along Highway 29, though it will take the City Council more time to make things official.

“Good to see the project moving forward,” Mayor Leon Garcia said.

The Planning Commission previously recommended approving the three-story, 112-room hotel near Donaldson Way. The City Council last week endorsed the proposal.

But going through the legal steps to wrap up the necessary approvals will take more time and more votes. That’s because the 2.5-acre site at 3443 Broadway — Broadway is another name for Highway 29 within the city — is zoned “local serving mixed-use,” which doesn’t allow hotels.

Rather than change the site’s zoning, the city intends to change “local serving mixed use” zoning to allow hotels with city permission.

The proposal for the Hampton Inn first came before the City Council almost a year ago. Council members have made several requests of the developers since then.

Originally, the hotel was to have a “modern,” relatively Spartan style in three colors with a flat roof. The council wanted a “farm” style to match the adjacent Canyon Plaza shopping center and the developers complied. The revised architecture has sloped roofs, wood siding and stone veneer in front.

The site presently has several buildings, including a residence with a windmill. The council asked that the windmill remain and be part of the landscaping.

The council wanted easy pedestrian/bike access to the Canyon Plaza shopping center, which entails building a 10-foot-wide bridge over a drainage swale. It wanted vehicle access to Donaldson Way, so guests heading to wine country wouldn’t have to make a U-turn on Highway 29.

“Literally, everything we asked them to do, they did,” City Council member Mark Joseph said. “I know sometimes they didn’t do it with a smile, but they got it done.”

City Council member David Oro said the planned bridge connection to adjacent businesses will increase commerce. The developers will under remove a power pole in keeping with the city’s desire to underground utilities along Highway 29.

“What a wonderful project,” he said.

The council had previously worried about the oversaturation of hotels. The developers submitted a marketing study showing the south county could support another hotel in the “upper midscale” and “upscale” range.

American Canyon already has the Fairfield Inn & Suites, Holiday Inn Express & Suites, and Doubletree. A Home2 Suites is to start construction soon, city officials said. In addition, a hotel is planned away from Highway 29 at Watson Ranch.

There are two other sites along Highway 29 with zoning that allows hotels and have enough land to accommodate one. These are the 4-acre Marshall Farm Honey property north of city hall and the 15-acre Union Pacific Railroad property on the northern edge of town, a city report said.

“Both of these properties are larger than needed for a typical hotel in American Canyon,” a city report said.

If the council follows through with allowing hotels in the “local serving mixed-use” zoning district, then a 4-acre site at Crawford Way and Highway 29 could also have a hotel. But the property owners for several years have been considering residential, a city report said.

The council on Nov. 16 approved the first reading of an ordinance to allow hotels in the local serving mixed-use zoning district. On Dec. 7, it could adopt the ordinance and vote on a use permit for the hotel.

This video shows a wine warehouse being built in the city of Napa from April to late October, 2021.

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You can reach Barry Eberling at 256-2253 or beberling@napanews.com.

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Napa County Reporter

Barry Eberling covers Napa County government, transportation, the environment and general assignments. He has worked for the Napa Valley Register since fall 2014 and previously worked 27 years for the Daily Republic of Fairfield.

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