Hotel space seems to be a lacking resource for downtown Raleigh but reading through the city’s Budget and Economic Development (BED) Committee agenda yesterday shows more rooms may be on the horizon. Longtime readers will remember The Lafayette project proposed for what is called “Site 4”, the parcel of land along Salisbury Street that butts up against the Performing Arts Deck. That project is officially out the door and the city is ready for new blood to come into town.
Looking through the agenda, City Manager Russell Allen sent a letter to the BED committee to suggest they consider Request For Proposals (RFP) of the site. He mentions multiple requests have come in from interested parties. He includes a copy of one such letter of interest, copied again by me and pasted below:
October 27, 2011
Mr. J Russell Allen
City of Raleigh
P.O. Box 590
Raleigh, NC 27602
Dear Mr Allen:
Summit Hospitality Group, Ltd. would like to engage with the City of Raleigh in the appropriate process to acquire the three parcels of city property on South Salisbury Street at its intersection with Lenoir and South Streets. I believe this is generally referred to by the city as their “Site 4”.
The intent for the property would be the development of an upscale mixed use property, the largest tenant being a MArriott extended stay hotel. The hotel would be similar in scope and scale to a similar property located on Mint Street in Charlotte, NC. For purposes of illustration, I have enclosed photos simulating the hotel situation on the Raleigh site as well as photos of the Charlotte hotel.
We have a verbal approval for a Residence Inn by Marriott franchise and tentative financing from local conventional sources contingent on the strength of a market study by a nationally recognized form. As soon as we could enter into a Letter of Intent or Memorandum of Understanding with the city, we are poised to immediately contract for the market study and begin the design phase for the presentation to the city.
R. Doyle Parrish
The attached pictures are shown in this blog post. Here’s a Google Streetview link to the hotel in Charlotte. I’ll emphasize that the pictures here are not final and no designs exist at all. This is just a model, made up for visualization.
The Raleigh Convention Center needs more of this in order to host some of the much larger conventions that it can handle but are not getting because of lack of hotel rooms. Skyline fans may be disappointed as a building of this scale is nothing to cheer about.
For me, it’s a great project really. The building should make a great compliment to the Performing Arts deck, helping make use of the extreme oversupply of parking that we have in downtown Raleigh. Also, while not unique in character, the urban form is a fine addition to the sidewalks of Salisbury Street. If you take our Marriott hotel on Fayetteville Street for example, the street trees, tables, and chairs are inviting. I see people sitting and relaxing there on many occasions.
The location of this hotel is also primo. It’s easy to get in and out of downtown by car and visitors can experience the Fayetteville Street/City Plaza area with much ease.
We’ll stay tuned for updates.