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Aporkalypse

New 8-12 story downtown NLR Hotel

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This is in the NLR Development thread but probably deserves its own thread.

Officials in North Little Rock have announced a plan to build a $28 million hotel near the city's Riverwalk and Dickey-Stephens Ballpark.

The hotel will be in the Argenta District in the downtown area at the corner of Broadway and Maple, at the former Rye Furniture location. Tthe hotel will have 130 guest rooms and 25,000 square feet of meeting space. It is supposed to be 8-12 stories tall.

A 300-space parking deck will go up adjacent to the hotel.

The brand name is not yet known.

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This is in the NLR Development thread but probably deserves its own thread.

Officials in North Little Rock have announced a plan to build a $28 million hotel near the city's Riverwalk and Dickey-Stephens Ballpark.

The hotel will be in the Argenta District in the downtown area at the corner of Broadway and Maple, at the former Rye Furniture location. Tthe hotel will have 130 guest rooms and 25,000 square feet of meeting space. It is supposed to be 8-12 stories tall.

A 300-space parking deck will go up adjacent to the hotel.

The brand name is not yet known.

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I wonder what brand the hotel is going to be. For the number of rooms it will be limited service. If it is not the Aloft that may go up in downtown LR or a Hampton Inn or Courtyard by Marriott since they are also in downtown LR what may the brand be? Maybe a Hilton Garden Inn, Hyatt Place, Four Points by Sheraton or even a Wingate by Wyndham to go across the street from the Wyndham.

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The developer said it would not compete with the Wyndham next door. So, does this mean that it will be more upscale? He also said they had talked to Aloft but they were no longer in the mix. More should be known about the hotel after Monday night. The NLR City Council will consider: "Approving waiver requests (height and set back requirements) for property located at the intersection of Maple and Broadway in the City of NLR ".

If all goes as planned will the owner of the Wyndham dust off his plans to add his talked about hotel tower addition? His contract with Wyndham is good for another 3 years will he, at that time, try to upgrade?

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The city passed the waiver request and now the next step will be the TIF district vote set for December 22nd. The TIF vote is to finance the parking deck for the project.

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The NLR Schooll District is suing the city over the TIF District. This is going to hold up and maybe even kill the development of the parking garage. This going to hold up or kill the hotel development.

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There are loads of articles about this. You can read about it on virtually all of the local television station websites as well. They are suing because what was being attempted wasn't appropriate.

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Appropriate? The city wants to use the funds to build a parking deck. Although it will benefit the hotel it will also provide much needed parking. The developer of the hotel is the only one providing new development in Argenta at this time. Here is an example of the school district not being able to see what is best for the city and in the long run what is best for the district. Maybe the district wouldn't need the money if it would stop running ads on TV about how great NLR High School is.

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I disagree that this was appropriate usage of the TIF. That's all, and that sentiment is fairly universal.

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The biggest issue is the capture of property taxes on a building that is already constructed without the use of TIF money and assemblage of the TIF district from three different TIF districts that are "connected" by right of way. TIF's are intended to create incentives for redevelopment in economically depressed areas where it would not feasible without subsidy. It is achieved by diverting away from schools the increases in property tax revenues caused by an improvement in order to finance a bond or loan taken by the city to help the developer. At least that is my understanding. The Enclave developed without TIF money, but now they are trying to capture the property taxes on the improvement after the fact to build the deck elsewhere.

Most of the people I've talked to about the issue think it is not appropriate.

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Quote your sources on your statement. You can claim the "sentiment is fairly universal" but you cannot prove it, only the court can.

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Then why would I quote a source if only a court can prove it. It's out there...you know that...give it a read. If you search for North Little Rock and TIF, you'll find plenty of articles. There have been many who have suggested that Hays reached too far with this and few who have disagreed.

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Does it meet any one of these 4 criteria?

(1) Property located in the proposed redevelopment district is in an advanced state of

dilapidation or neglect or is so structurally deficient that improvements or major repairs

are necessary to make the property functional;

(2) Property located in the proposed redevelopment district has structures that have

been vacant for more than three (3) years;

(3) Property located in the proposed redevelopment district has structures that are

functionally obsolete and cause the structures to be ill-suited for their original use; or

(4) Vacant or unimproved parcels of property located in the redevelopment district are

in an area that is predominantly developed and are substantially impairing or arresting

growth of the city or county due to obsolete platting, deterioration of structures, absence

of structures, infrastructure, site improvements, or other factors hindering growth.

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I rest my case when you stated: "There have been many who have suggested that Hays reached too far with this and few who have disagreed." This is not an universal sentiment and the majority of those against the TIF are not versed in the law. Ex., Mr. Fletcher is more interested in being the only hotel in downtown Argenta, the school district only wants funds no matter what the outcome...

Not only are funds from the TIF going for a parking deck but also meeting space and street improvements between the Enclave and this project.

I think the main question to be answered is can this area be classified as "blight". I would think "blight" would cover this area more than the wetlands where the Shoppes at North Hills is planing to go. Since Alltel Arena was built there has been little private investment in the area except for the Enclave and the hotel developer's projects. Other projects have been announced by other developers but they have backed out.

I think the school district might be wise to give up a little now in order to gain a lot more in the future.

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