New hotel study commissioned
By: Tammy Rollie
| Posted: Wednesday, Dec 11, 2013 08:23 am
A foothills community is investing thousands of dollars to study whether there is enough demand for a new hotel in the Diamond Valley area, with the goal of attracting more business to the community.
Black Diamond town council voted unanimously during its regular meeting last week to pay a maximum of $16,000 to allow an independent company to conduct a study to determine the feasibility of operating a new hotel in town. The study will be available to hotels and businesses interested in opening shop in Black Diamond and the cost will come from the Town’s economic development reserve fund.
“It becomes a very usable tool to approach many different hotels to see what they think,” Black Diamond Economic Development and Events Coordinator David Petrovich told council.
Two months ago, council reversed its motion to pay $8,000 for a family-owned private hotel franchise to conduct its own study following public concerns the results would only suit the needs of one particular chain.
Although Petrovich initially recommended this option, he said in hindsight the economic development committee agreed an independent study would better suit the community.
“It was discussed that we needed to go through an independent consultant so that whatever results come out of this would be independent of any influence,” he said.
Petrovich said some committee members questioned why businesses can’t pay for their own studies, but in the end agreed the Town would benefit.
“Hotels are gateways to many other businesses,” he told council. “It’s a huge drawing card for any town to have a family-oriented hotel.”
The study could also be used to attract other businesses interested in moving to Black Diamond, he said.
“We (will) have a document that talks about our town and describes what we are capable of and what kind of capacity we could fill for a hotel,” he said.
“It talks about not only a hotel but feasibility for bringing any business in town. It’s a broad view that focuses on a hotel.”
Black Diamond Hotel manager Lori Green said the addition of a family-oriented hotel in town could benefit the community and even bring more people into town.
“We are not family oriented,” she said. “You can’t bring your kids in here for a meal.
“I actually don’t think it would hurt.”
Petrovich said hotel chains often come with their own destination marketing fund, which benefits the communities they move into.
“It’s far beyond what we (could afford to) put into advertising for our town,” he said.
Petrovich told council in June he received three estimates for independent studies, with one as high as $16,000.
Although Mayor Sharlene Brown initially expressed concern over paying $16,000 for an independent study at an earlier council meeting, she agreed to the motion last week because the idea received support from the economic development committee.
“It needed to go through committee is why I didn’t support it,” she said. “Now that it’s gone through committee I’m happy with the decision because it’s something that needs to be done.
“I’m sure the committee and staff have done their research on it.”
Petrovich said for about five years the committee has been discussing the potential for a family hotel in Black Diamond, one that could support large groups coming into the community for tournaments and functions.
In addition to the Black Diamond Hotel, the community also has the Cowboy Trail Motel.