The city of Leavenworth has completed a transaction to sell the land for a planned hotel in northeast Leavenworth, and the property is now in the hands of the developer, a city official said.
City Manager Scott Miller said the city received the money from the sale of the land Dec. 31. The land was sold to JCJ Land Partners, a limited liability company that was established for the hotel project.
The city was paid $520,000 for land it acquired at Fourth Street and Metropolitan Avenue. The developer, John Ferguson, plans to build a Marriott brand hotel at that corner, which officials have said may be a Fairfield Inn and Suites.
“He’s working on the plans,” Miller said of Ferguson.
Miller has said the construction of the hotel likely won’t begin in the spring. But the developer has indicated he may soon begin final grading at the site and installation of some retaining walls.
Some grading already has been completed. The city was responsible for the work as one of the conditions of the agreement with the developer that resulted in the sale of the land.
Miller said the $520,000 received for the land was put into an economic development fund to be used for other projects.
“You never know what’s going to come down the pike,” he said.
Miller said getting to this point in the hotel project has been a long haul. The city acquired more than a dozen properties in the area of Fourth Street and Metropolitan Avenue that will now be part of the hotel site.
The City Commission also voted to vacate Cheyenne Street between Fourth and Fifth streets as part of the project.
Miller said the city has spent about $1.2 million in connection with the project. With the $520,000 that was received for the land, that leaves about $680,000. He said the project should be able to pay for itself through property taxes from the hotel within four or five years of the building’s completion. But he said the project may pay for itself sooner because of things such as the transient guest tax that will be collected at the hotel as well as money pumped into the local economy from people who stay at the hotel.