Capital Board will pay up to $1.3 million toward new hotel

The Allen County Capital Improvement Board this morning agreed to pay up to $1.3 million of the cost of a new downtown hotel.On another front in downtown development, the same board learned that a projection of the revenue and expenses likely from a proposed downtown arena won’t be ready for about another 45 days, Steve Brody told his fellow board members.

The board agreed to provide $1 million at closing toward the estimated $20.3 million cost of a Hampton Inn & Suites hotel proposed along Jefferson Boulevard across from the Grand Wayne Center. Based on construction costs, the board is to contribute up to another $298,000 when the 125-room hotel opens.

That $1.3 million is just part of the public funding behind the project. Other contributions already approved or sought include:

* $500,000 from the Tax Increment Financing district to pay for site work;

* $250,000 from the city of Fort Wayne toward the cost of a covered walkway from the Harrison Square parking garage to the Hampton Inn & Suites;

* The land on which the hotel will be built, which Fort Wayne Redevelopment Director Nancy Townsend said is worth $350,000-$400,000;

* and a 10-year tax abatement.

White Lodging, the developer of the Hampton Inn hotel, also was the developer behind the Courtyards by Marriott hotel at Harrison Square. Deno Yiankes, the president and CEO of White Lodging’s investments and development division, told board members the hotel is expected to employ 25 when it opens and about 120 construction jobs during the 14-15 months required to build it.

Regarding the downtown arena study, when the board hired Victus Advisors of Park City, Utah, to project the revenue and costs of its operation, results were due back around Labor Day. Brody told other board members today that he’s confident about the work Victus is doing, but the consultants need more time. He now expects a report around mid-November.