CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - An historic preservation group is launching a federal lawsuit to keep the owner of a downtown Charleston building from turning it into a hotel.
The Carroll Building on East Bay at the Market has housed restaurants like Hooked Seafood, office space and was once the home to the Art Institute of Charleston.
According to the lawsuit, the owners, Carroll Building LLC, have asked the city for permission to make it into a hotel.
The Historic Charleston Foundation filed the suit saying there are already too many hotels in downtown Charleston, and that adding another in this building will take away from the character and livability of the area.
According to documents in the lawsuit, the Historic Charleston Foundation has an interest in the property because it was given a Conservation deed to it back in 1984 to protect its historical integrity.
The suit claims that easement gives it the right to restrict how the building can be used.
The city has not yet ruled on the Carroll Building owners’ request to build a hotel on the site.
The Historic Charleston Foundation says if the city does allow it, the judge should allow the preservation group to receive proceeds from the sale.