Hotel Conference Center “Before” and proposed “After” design concepts.

Project Summary

In 2018, the Bartholomew County Heritage Fund supported an initiative called Envision Columbus to study the needs and potential for future growth in Columbus.  That study identified 3 opportunity zones for development; commercial, residential and park systems.  The commercial area targeted the 2nd and 3rd Street corridor in downtown Columbus as an area that could be revitalized into a destination that would attract cultural, dining and entertainment opportunities.  Their recommendations included a hotel/conference center, urban grocer and multi-family housing as vital to the growth of the area and a building block for further public and private development.

In late 2019, the Columbus Redevelopment Commission chose the development team of Sprague Hotel Developers and real estate developers, Flaherty & Collins Properties to take the lead in the development of a hotel/conference center, urban grocer and multi-family housing in downtown Columbus.   In February, 2020 a Term Sheet was executed as an agreement between all parties in regard to the scope of the project.  The developers quickly began contacting potential hotel brands and grocers and found a great deal of interest from businesses in regard to locating a new property in downtown Columbus.  At the request of the developers, the Commission has authorized a traffic study be completed involving 2nd and 3rd Streets and the possibility of converting those streets to two-way traffic.  The process has also been put in motion to rezone the potential properties for commercial development.

The primary elements of the project are a branded conference hotel, which can be a full-service “lite” brand or select-service “plus” brand with the following elements:

  • 140+/- Guest Rooms
  • 9,000+/-SF Divisible Ballroom
  • 4,000 – 5,000 SF of Divisible Breakout Meeting Rooms (at least five divisions)
  • 3-Meal Restaurant that activates the street and has as much street presence as possible, likely on a corner.
  • Parking for the hotel and conference center. Currently estimated to be 380+/- spaces.
  • Urban Grocery on the property or in the immediate vicinity

Project Timeline:

2018: Envision Columbus: Downtown Strategic Development plan studies the needs and potential for future growth in Columbus. The study recommendations included a hotel/conference center, urban grocer and multi-family housing as vital to the growth of the area and a building block for further public and private development.

June 2018: CRC engaged Hunden Strategic Partners (HSP), a leading advisor in Destination Real Estate Development, to perform a market and financial feasibility study for a potential conference center and hotel in downtown, Columbus.

Late 2018: HSP provides their findings to the community. There is a need for an approximately 140 room hotel and 9,000 sq. ft. of ballroom/meeting space.

March 2019: CRC issues an RFQ for hotel/conference center developers and multi-family/urban grocer developers.

July 2019: CRC invites four pre-qualified finalist teams to respond to an RFP for a hotel/conference center and multi-family/urban grocer development.

Late  2019: The Columbus Redevelopment Commission chose the development team of Sprague Hotel Developers and real estate developers, Flaherty & Collins Properties to take the lead in the development of a hotel/conference center, urban grocer and multi-family housing in downtown Columbus.

February 2020: A Term Sheet was executed as an agreement between all parties in regard to the scope of the project. The developers quickly began contacting potential hotel brands and grocers and found a great deal of interest.

March 2020: The COVID-19 pandemic hits and the hospitality industry is crippled.

2020: The Commission has authorized a traffic study be completed involving 2nd and 3rd Streets and the possibility of converting those streets to two-way traffic.

2021 and Forward: Continuing project efforts.

Phase 1 Environmental Reports

2nd & Lafayette Site Phase 1 Report

County Site Phase 1 Report