Five potential hotel developers respond to Tacoma's request

Staff writerMarch 17, 2014 

City officials expect to make recommendations to Tacoma City Manager T.C. Broadnax and the City Council next month about how to proceed with development of a city-owned parcel adjacent to the Greater Tacoma Convention & Trade Center.

Five Western Washington developers have expressed interest in the nearly 2-acre site south of the convention center at South 17th Street and Broadway downtown, said Elly Walkowiak, the city's business development manager.

The city's development staff is evaluating those submissions, she said.  They will either ask for more detailed proposals if there are multiple proposals that are similar, ask City Council permission to begin detailed negotiations with one developer or recommend that development of the parcel be put on hold until more attractive proposals emerge.

The city in its request for information told potential bidders the city's vision for the site is a mixed use building including a 250-room, four-star hotel with meeting rooms, a ballroom and internal parking.

The city is asking $6.29 million for the site.  Whatever structure is built on the site would have to maintain vehicular access to the convention center garage through the development site.

The city wants to add to the area's hotel room inventory to attract more events to the convention center.  When that center was built, Hollander Investments of Bellingham constructed a 162-room Marriott hotel across Commerce Street from the center.  The 320-room Hotel Murano is located a block north of the center, and a 163-room Holiday Inn opened last fall about five blocks south near the University of Washington Tacoma campus.

A $17-million, 104-room Marriott Residence Inn project planned for Dock Street on the Thea Foss Waterway remains on hold while its developers await the issuance of building permits for the hotel.  That proposed hotel is located about three blocks from the convention center.



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