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Hotel Project Moves Forward After City, Developer Reach Deal

A Four Points by Sheraton hotel and airport parking lot, proposed for the corner of College and Howell avenues, is back on again.

A proposed hotel development for the corner of College and Howell avenues is alive once again, with a new incentive package that alleviated the concerns of top Oak Creek officials.

The agreement between Oak Creek and development group Syner G reduces the city's financing from $4.5 million to $2.75 million. The money will come through a tax-incremental financing district and be repaid over nine years.

Money provided by private investors, meanwhile, has increased. T2 Development upped its investment into the hotel by $500,000 and committed an estimated $1.6 million for a long-term parking lot that will be used by Mitchell International Airport travelers, according to a report to council members.

As additional collateral, Syner G agreed to provide a letter of credit for one year's worth of real estate taxes.

Put together, the changes "significantly reduce the city's risk" in the project, City Administrator Gerald Peterson said. Oak Creek officials  for the proposal, saying it presented an "unnecessary risk" for the city and taxpayers.

"That's not to say that this is without risk," Peterson said.

"It ends up to be a balance over time. At least from my standpoint, I think this is a reasonable balance that I can recommend the council consider."

Council members had rejected calls to withdraw the city's financing, saying the proposal had great potential to create jobs and add to the Oak Creek tax base.

They wanted Oak Creek officials and Syner G representative Greg Trapani to continue working on finding a solution to the city's concerns and were pleased an agreement was reached.

"I'm happy you pushed as hard as you could to actually come away with a satisfactory agreement, at least from my point of view," Alderman Tom Michalski told city staff during the council meeting.

Plans call for a 107-room Four Points by Sheraton Hotel that will feature a full-service restaurant, bar, fitness center, swimming pool, business center and meeting facilities. 

Additionally, developers are planning a 1,515-stall parking lot for airport travelers. The city will receive 5 percent of the revenue generated by the parking lot.

To reduce construction costs, the parking lot will no longer be covered. This had been a point of contention for neighbors of the development. But aldermen said the lot will no longer abut the residential neighborhood, as was first proposed, and should no longer be an issue.

The proposal was . Because of delays, the zoning has expired, meaning the plans need fresh approvals. The proposal will go through the Oak Creek Plan Commission, and a public hearing will be held.

Mark August 22, 2012 at 04:19 PM
Unbelievable. The last thing we need is another airport parking lot. Milwaukee is no longer a hub with many airlines competing for travelers. The halcyon days of non-stop flights everywhere are over and aren't coming back. There are much fewer flights and therefore less travelers. Another blunder by the idiots in charge of OC. One after another. Zero vision for the future and what this city really needs. How's that Drexel Town Square recruiting doing? We're going to have a city hall and library right in the middle with NOTHING around it for a decade.
Neeq79 August 22, 2012 at 06:42 PM
It just feels like it will be another eye sore...How many hotels do we have within a five mile radius of the airport? Do we really need another one?? We may have an international airport, but it's not THAT busy that the already existing hotels cannot handle...
BringBackOakCreek09 August 22, 2012 at 09:51 PM
Mark, you could not have said it better for this hotel. With the delphi site businesses they want have no interest in this site. They still have to haul all that concrete out, they still have water and utilitys to redo on this site. The city will strain its resources trying to complete both projects and end up flat on their faces. Besides that, the city now has put 2 million dollars toward lake shore development. Im unsure what reality the city council is living in but its not one where oak creek comes out for the better. Try maintaining our city for once, not destroying it.
vocal local 1 August 22, 2012 at 10:38 PM
Unbelievable... Alderman Dan, 1st district, knows his constituents are against this development that is going to invade their back yard privacy with lights and noise and who knows what and who else 24/24. Plus, there is most assuredly going to be storm water run off problems with all that non-pervious surface if not at the site then further downstream and later in South Milwaukee. Admitting he had reservations, Danny boy voted in favor along with the "good ole boys".. None of the first district residents were in attendance. No one in the audience spoke for them. That’s a pretty old district. I suspect the residents are all as aged and senile as their representation. 6 yeas. City council and mayor are giving the city away. $2,750,000 of tif district funds (that’s our tax money in case you don't know) plus were going to put the property tax revenue of the residents into paying off the TIF debt. Folks, it's going to take apx. 16 years for the city to recoup the 2.75 million from Syner LLC via the developments property taxes estimated at $177,000 per year. No wonder Mr. Peterson, City Administrator admits the project is still risky. In a depression, the city is moving progressive forward for those of us that don't know. The project is so risky and harmful to the residential neighborhood it abutts that the council should have voted NO and let SynerG LLC go elsewhere. LET THE CORNER STAND EMPTY.
Connie Ploch August 23, 2012 at 07:51 PM
YES, there is a need for DECENT hotels in the airport area! The fact is business travel is increasing. Just because airlines are merging creating less of a choice for passengers doesn't mean travel is down. Have you tried to get preassigned seating lately? Or change your flight without costing a substantial amount more? Yes, that is because flights ARE full...and yes, Milwaukee and surrounding areas attract plenty of travelers. If jobs are created--even BETTER. Take a look at the Hilton Garden Inn, is that an eyesore? I don't think so!
vocal local 1 August 24, 2012 at 11:49 AM
Obviously Connie you don't live next to the proposed project. Would you like a hotel and 24 hour parking facility in your back yard? Further, SynerG seems to be lacking in cash to support this project and is relying on taxpayer funding to make a profit. Jobs??? I'm sure you'll be in line to apply as a maid at min wage; ?tu habla espanola? Airline travel problems? Just another example of white collar welfare, inflated CEO profits. Give me a break. Do your homework don't rant personal problems and opinions. Whats going on with the failed postal plan on the other end of the street?
Dirk August 24, 2012 at 02:08 PM
Most of these letters are ridiculous. So a 4-star hotel and parking lot will wreck havoc in the area? What will it inconvenience, the abandoned house adjacent to this property? So rather than placing a beautiful maintained hotel, which will add jobs, exposure for Oak Creek and new tax revenue, you prefer an empty eyesore lot that collects trash? Absurd.
vocal local 1 August 24, 2012 at 05:44 PM
Dirk, pay attention. The residents behind the corner will be affected. When they bought their homes the now empty corner had residential homes that contributed to the tax base. I can't remember the history, but some developer bought out the residential and never developed for what ever reason. NEW TAX REVENUE...not for 16 years and about that time don't ya think Sheridan will sell or tear down and rebuild? JOBS?? NO, There probably won't be one "gainful employment" job for any OC resident at that site. Were not talking a high rise Sheridan Sherator this will be a small two story that close to the airport,
concerned citizen August 28, 2012 at 01:03 AM
Anyone that buys property near vacant land in a growing city should always anticipate changes. If you dont want to live in a city, dont live in a city, find a township outside the city limits.

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