A decade after developing its first hotel in historic Haymarket, Woodbury Corp. considering adding a neighbor.
The Utah-based company, which helped develop and now owns the Courtyard by Marriott at Eighth and R streets that opened in fall 2012, wants to build another Marriott hotel next door.
The 120-room property would be an extended-stay hotel under the Residence Inn by Marriott banner.
Josh Berger, director of development for the Woodbury Midwest office, said planning is in its early stages for the hotel, which will be built on land at Ninth and R streets owned by the University of Nebraska. A rendering shows a six-story building that is said to be about 65 feet tall.
He called the location a “tremendous pole position site” and said he thinks the new hotel would fit in well with the market as its target audience is slightly different from customers checking into other hotels. from the Haymarket.
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Rooms at the Residence Inn will have kitchenettes with refrigerators, an amenity that will appeal to people staying three days or more, Berger said. They can be business travelers, visiting scholars at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, or parents visiting their UNL students.
Berger said it will have common amenities such as a fitness room and a business center. He said Woodbury was working with the city to reserve spots in nearby parking lots for his guests.
Although the hotel is built on land owned by the university, the latter is not involved in the project.
Berger said Woodbury has a ground lease for the site which the NU board approved at its December meeting.
Woodbury paid just over $1.2 million upfront for a 35-year lease and has three five-year options to extend the lease at $100,000 each.
The site is the last piece of vacant property on the block bounded by Eighth, Ninth, R and S streets, which was identified more than a decade ago by Lincoln’s Vision 2015 group as the primary site for a potential center of arts and humanities which could potentially have art galleries, performing arts space, specialty shops and residential development.
It is not clear if this is still part of the university’s plans. Melissa Lee, spokeswoman for the university system, said the proposed arts and humanities block was part of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s strategic plan and she could not comment on it.
In addition to the neighboring Courtyard, the Residence Inn would join a Hilton Garden Inn and a Hyatt Place as hotels built in the Haymarket since work on the Pinnacle Bank Arena began.
In 2020 Drury Hotels bought the block northeast of Ninth and Q streets, the former production site of the Journal Star, but no development work took place.
Since planning is in its early stages for the Residence Inn, Berger said he doesn’t yet have a specific timeline as to when construction will begin or when the hotel will open. Woodbury plans to seek tax increment funding to help cover the costs of the project, a process that requires several stages of review and can take several months.
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