Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

Mayor's Prediction: Hotel Work in July ; Franchise, Financing Are Only Hurdles Left

Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

Mayor's Prediction: Hotel Work in July ; Franchise, Financing Are Only Hurdles Left

Article excerpt

Mayor Lloyd Winnecke said private financing and a franchise agreement for the new Downtown convention hotel are expected to be settled this month, with visible site work starting this summer. HCW of Branson, Missouri, is developing the 257-room convention hotel, which is to be connected to Old National Events Plaza and the Ford Center. The $71.3 million project also includes an apartment tower, parking and street improvements.

The hotel is to be a Hilton DoubleTree, but Dunn Hospitality Group of Evansville filed an objection to the licensing application with the Hilton chain, saying the planned DoubleTree would pull business from existing Hilton properties in this area.

HCW officials, who were in Evansville last week, told Winnecke they expect Hilton will make a decision on that issue in a few days. Winnecke said HCW has looked at potential backup franchises for the new hotel, but company officials are "optimistic it will have a Hilton flag."

Once the franchise issue is settled, other hurdles to get the hotel project started can be cleared, Winnecke said. …

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