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Choice of Builder for Downtown Hotel Due Within 6 Months

May 08, 1986|MARTHA L. WILLMAN | Times Staff Writer

Glendale city officials say they expect within six months to select a developer and preliminary design concepts for a major first-class hotel to be built in the downtown financial district.

Members of the Glendale City Council on Tuesday authorized the city's Redevelopment Agency to review qualifications of potential hotel developers and operators.

Susan F. Shick, deputy redevelopment director, said five or six developers have expressed strong interest in negotiating with the city. By July, the city plans to narrow the list to no more than three developers, she said. Final selection is scheduled for October.

The agency last year proposed that the hotel be built on one of two sites on Central Avenue. The two sites are situated immediately north and south of the Ventura Freeway. They are next to major office-parking garages, which generally are empty at night and could be used to accommodate hotel parking, Shick said.

City officials have worked for more than seven years to entice a major hotel into the downtown. They say there is a critical need in the community for a facility with meeting rooms for community and business groups. The lack of meeting rooms became more pronounced two weeks ago when Pike's Verdugo Oaks Restaurant closed, Shick said. The restaurant had served as the center of social and civic activities, and there are no other facilities in the city to accommodate large banquets.

The agency has specified that it wants a 300-room, full-service commercial hotel affiliated with a major chain. Amenities would include restaurants, a cocktail lounge with entertainment, meeting and banquet rooms, swimming pool, health club, retail shops and travel-related services.

An earlier proposal to build a hotel near the Galleria shopping mall collapsed in 1984 when the Mariner Corp. of Texas, blaming poor economic conditions, withdrew from negotiations with the city.

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