The Leavenworth Times - Leavenworth, KS
  • Hotel construction won't begin until spring

  • Construction of a planned hotel in northeast Leavenworth isn't expected to begin until the spring, a city official said.
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  • Construction of a planned hotel in northeast Leavenworth isn't expected to begin until the spring, a city official said.
    City Manager Scott Miller said it's too late in the season to start now because of the threat of winter snowfall, which he said would halt work.
    And Miller said the developer is still working on construction plans for the hotel at Fourth Street and Metropolitan Avenue.
    The developer plans to build a Marriott brand hotel, which officials have said will be a Fairfield Inn and Suites.
    The city has a contract to sell land it has acquired at Fourth Street and Metropolitan Avenue to the developer for $520,000. The contract originally was scheduled to expire in April 2011, but there have been multiple extensions. Leavenworth city commissioners approved another extension of the contract when they met Tuesday. The contract is now extended through Jan. 28.
    The contract previously listed Ferguson Hotel Development as the company that will purchase the land. But an amended version not lists the buyer as JCJ Land Partners.
    Miller said JCJ Land Partners is a limited liability company that's being established for the hotel project. He said the same developer, John Ferguson, is involved with JCJ Land Partners.
    The amended contract lists Ferguson as the manager of JCJ Land Partners.
    Even though there have been multiple extensions to the contract, Miller said Ferguson is still interested in the project.
    "He's going to do the hotel," Miller said.
    The city manager said the developer has put a lot of money into the project.
    The city has met the conditions required of it in the contract. With the city's work completed, the developer was given a 120-day inspection period.
    Commissioners had been asked Tuesday to approve a extension of the real estate contract through Jan. 15. But Commissioner Mark Preisinger suggested extending the contract through Jan. 28, which he said will coincide with the end of the 120-day inspection period.
    The city also has been trying to attract a developer to build a new downtown hotel at the site of the former Nights Inn. The former hotel site is now owned by a bank.
    A St. Louis, Mo., company has expressed interest in building a hotel there, but Miller said the project is "stagnant." He said the company is involved in other major projects.
    "This (downtown hotel) has kind of been pushed to the side," he said.
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