It's been in the works for the last decade and finally plans are starting shape up for a brand new conference center in Edmond, near Sooner and Covell Roads.
“The major hurdles are through, so we would like to see some dirt moving out there very soon," said Janet Yowell, Executive Director of the Edmond Economic Development Authority.
The site plan was just approved last week for a 130,000 sq. ft. Hilton Garden Inn, standing six stories tall with about 160 rooms.
“It will be a full-service hotel with a restaurant with food service and then a place to hold meetings,” Yowell said. “So it will have event space and break out space, and that's the thing that's important to us and a new product to our market. We haven't had a full-service hotel in a number of years."
The center will fill a void in Edmond as traffic continues to pick up in the growing area along I-35. It is also where a public-private sports complex is to be constructed on the northeast corner of Sooner Road and Covell Road.
4/12/2012 Related Story: City Of Edmond Planning Bold New Development Project
The Summit Sports Complex will cater to basketball, volleyball and soccer players in a 170,000 sq. ft. complex on 19 acres of land the City of Edmond purchased for about $2 million. The City hopes these projects will lead to even more development and an economic boost.
"It's all about sales tax revenue and we're trying to generate more, more shopping choices for our citizens, more reasons for people to come in Edmond," Yowell said.
City officials paid $2 million for the property where the hotel and conference center will be built and invested $11 million overall. They are still taking bids on the project and have not yet determined a ground-breaking date.
Due to high traffic the development will attract, road improvements are currently being designed and engineered, and construction should occur simultaneously.