Information about hotel, conference center on tap

TYLER (TYLER MORNING TELEGRAPH) - Tylerites are expected to learn more about the possible development of a new hotel and conference center in the city when the Tyler City Council considers the plan on Wednesday at its meeting.
According to the agenda, the council could authorize City Manager Mark McDaniel to enter into a professional services contract with Dallas-based Garfield Traub Development to assist with design, construction, financing and operation of a conference center and hotel in partnership with a third party.

Last summer, council members learned that a preliminary study showed the city needs and could support a hotel and conference center. Consultants suggested a 250-room hotel and a 27,000-square-foot conference center that featured a main ballroom and a variety of smaller rooms.

PRK Consulting USA conducted a site analysis and market study, while consulting firm Garfield Traub examined a proposed building program and preliminary financing plan, officials said.

Officials estimated last year the 9-acre conference center-hotel project could cost between $57.5 million and $70 million, depending on location and hotel brand. Some funding could come from revenue from the hotel-motel tax, which generates about $2 million annually, and money generated from the 2011 passage of Senate Bill 349, which added 2 percent to Tyler's hotel/motel occupancy tax rate.

Council also is scheduled to hear a status update on the city's comprehensive plan, Tyler 21, at the meeting.

Tyler 21 originally was adopted by the City Council on Nov. 14, 2007, after nearly 18 months of community involvement and input, according to information from the city. This 20-year plan created a strategic framework for future actions for the city and is a community-based plan. It defines a vision for the future linked to overall goals and policies, and it contains strategies and action items for achieving the goals.

The plan calls for annual reports to City Council on the status of implementation as well as a comprehensive review every three to five years to revisit the vision, goals and principles. 

"This month, we will launch a comprehensive five-year review of the plan," City Planner Heather Nick said in a news release. "We have already begun preliminary work and analysis and are eager to involve the community in updating the plan."

The presentation that will be made to the council will include the scope of the work that will be included in the comprehensive review of the timeline, the release stated.

The Tyler 21 Plan addresses issues such as downtown revitalization, historic preservation, parks and recreation, transportation, and housing and neighborhoods.  For more information on Tyler 21, go to

The meeting is at 9 a.m. Wednesday at the Liberty Theater, 103 E. Erwin St.


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