Published: Oct 12, 2012 12:22 PM
Modified: Oct 12, 2012 12:23 PM
CARY - The proposed downtown hotel now has a name, a budget and official town endorsement. The Mayton Inn, a 45-room boutique inn to be built by a private developer, will meet its $9.5 million budget with a mix of bank and government loans, town staff reported on Thursday.
The town will facilitate the project in a few ways under an agreement approved this week by the Cary Town Council. First, the local government would take a $1.4 million federal Housing and Urban Development and re-lend it to Colin and Deanna Crossman, owner of Durham’s The King’s Daughters Inn. The town also would allow the Crossmans 15 years to pay for the town-owned project site.
“This is not a subsidy. This is a real-estate deal,” said Downtown Development Manager Ed Gawf, who first approached the Crossmans about the project in December.
Cary would sell the project site to the Crossmans for about half the $1.9 million that it cost the government; town staff say the price is based on the price-per-acre that Cary has paid for the entire 13-acre “opportunity site” that would be home to a downtown park, the hotel and other potential development.
The town would itself pay for about $325,000 of work for the hotel, and the Crossmans would scrounge up the rest of the money, including a $5.3 million bank loan in their name. Should the project go wrong, the bank would have first dibs to recover its money.
Cary’s rewards for its efforts would be a “four diamond” hotel that could encourage further development and night life, staff and elected officials said. The hotel’s Art Deco-style rooms, renting for $200 to $250 a night, would bring about 8,200 sets of guests to downtown each year, according to town staff. The Crossmans also would pay to restore the historic Mayton and Waldo-Rood houses, which the town has agreed to move to the hotel site.
The inn would have in-room iPads, 42-inch televisions, a library, full bar, restuarant, meeting rooms and a public terrace, along with a gym and spa rooms, according to a press release. The project would sit at the intersection of South Academy Street and Park Street, with its back looking out onto the future site of a town park.
“That’s going to be a unique place to go downtown, and something to show our history,” said Mayor Harold Weinbrecht. “And it’s only going to serve breakfast, so it’s going to need some restaurants too.”
Town staff project the hotel could be built as early as 2014, and not later than 2017. A clause in the agreement guarantees that the project will be run as a “first-class facility” for at least ten years after construction, even if it’s sold, Gawf said.
News of the project last week drew a few questions and complaints about the town’s financial involvement, but Thursday’s meeting was all praise and well-wishing.
“If this is the catalyst that downtown Cary needs to continue the downtown improvement,” said downtown resident Andrew Schaefer, “then I’m in full support.”
The town council approved the plan and land sale unanimously.