While the COVID-19 pandemic has taken a toll on the economy, several economic development projects in Leavenworth appear to be moving forward, according to the city manager.
City Manager Paul Kramer said there are plans for a Starbucks location in south Leavenworth. And an announcement recently was made about plans for opening 60 hotel rooms at the former Immaculata High School building.
There also are plans for remodeling the Price Chopper store in Leavenworth.
Kramer said developers have building plans and applied for sign and demolition permits for a Starbucks location at the site of the former Payless ShoeSource, 4824 S. Fourth St., in Leavenworth.
The Payless ShoeSource store closed in 2019 when the company filed for bankruptcy.
Kramer said the redevelopment of the former Immaculata High School in downtown Leavenworth started out as a lofts project. But a recent online announcement indicates there are plans for at least a portion of the former school building to be used for 60 hotel rooms.
The announcement was made by Krishna Paliwal, head of architecture, design and construction for Wyndham Hotels and Resorts and president of the La Quinta hotel brand.
It appears from the announcement that the hotel rooms may operate under the Trademark Collection by Wyndham brand.
According to the announcement, the anticipated opening date for the hotel is Oct. 6.
“I’m hoping they found a good niche in the market,” Kramer said.
Immaculata High School, which served as a private Catholic high school, closed in 2017.
When Leavenworth city commissioners meet Tuesday, they will consider a resolution of intent to issue industrial revenue bonds in support of the remodeling of the Price Chopper grocery store and pharmacy at 2107 S. Fourth St.
Issuing the industrial revenue bonds would enable the developers to use the city’s state and local sales tax exemption for labor and building materials for the project.
According to a report Kramer prepared for Tuesday’s meeting, city staff members and the developers have reached a predevelopment agreement that includes other financial incentives that are subject to approval by commissioners.
The proposed financial incentives also include tax increment financing and a community improvement district, which will come before commissioners sometime in the future.