WATCH:The developer behind a new hotel to be built beside the Vancouver Island Convention Centre has filed its development application and more detailed plans.
It includes artistic renderings. Kendall Hanson reports.
This is the first look at the artistic renderings for the new hotel proposed to go beside the Vancouver Island Conference Centre.
The City now has the development application and the plans are for a bigger hotel than initially proposed.
“This plan is much better than the original plan that we anticipated because we expected a six-storey wooden frame hotel building but now we’re going up to nine floors, a concrete structure, so it will be a lot better,” said Nanaimo City Councillor Jerry Hong.
It’s long been believed the Conference Centre has never realized it’s potential because there was no adjoining hotel. This one won’t be connected to the convention centre as previous councils hoped but it will be right across the street with 155 rooms. It will also have an indoor pool and a bistro, with patio, at street level.
“This will add a lot for downtown,” said Hong. “I think having more hotels is key, one of the key parts of revitalizing all downtowns … and this is a high profile project that has never come to fruition.”
It will be the first Courtyard by Marriott on Vancouver Island. And while there have been previous artistic renderings for other hotels at the site in the past Hong, who sits on the city’s design advisory panel, says this developer has the money and this hotel will be built.
“This company is Utah base and they have the capital and they have the money so they’re not waiting for investors to come,” said Hong. “They’re just waiting for the permits.”
Nanaimo residents have mixed opinions about the hotels plans.
“I think they look very nice and I think anything that will help attract people to Nanaimo will be a good thing,” said Nanaimo resident Mrs Maguire, who declined to give her first name.
“We don’t need another hotel in Nanaimo,” said Nanaimo resident Jane Saxton. “We do not need a nine-storey hotel.”
Hong says the building will only be three stories above the convention centre and won’t go much above the bluff.
Hong says the hotel will use the convention centre’s parking which will also bring in additional revenue.
The land’s sale is expected to finalize in November with construction beginning in the spring.