Hartington — A new motel is on the horizon for the city of Hartington.
Jeremy Griesbach, vice-president of development for Cobblestone Hotels and members of the Hartington Economic Development Corp. met with the Hartington City Council Monday.
The proposed motel would be constructed along Hwy. 57 where the Court of Arens is currently located.
The motel would have 28 or 29 rooms plus a space that could be used for meetings, according to Griesbach.
“The motel will provide six full-time positions and max out at eight full-time down the road,” Griesbach said.
The estimated cost of the project is expected to be right at $2.1 million.
Cobblestone Hotels and a number of other investors will be involved in the project.
Council members gave their approval for a $50,000 grant that would come from the LB840 portion of funds, which are brought in from a city sales tax, for the motel project.
Council members were also supportive of using Tax Increment Financing (TIF) for the project which is a form of bonding that utilizes future tax revenue generated from the project to repay the bonds.
The taxes on the value of the property, before any improvements are made, will continue to be dispersed to the city, county, school and other taxing entities.
The taxes collected on the portion of the value that has been added will be used to pay off bonds that were secured for the project.
Cobblestone Hotels has worked with other communities with projects similar to the one planned for Hartington, according to Griesbach.
“We have 13 hotels open. Two of them are in Nebraska – at Wayne and Fairbury. Five are under construction,” Griesbach said. “We have been trying to find that certain piece of property that would work well here in Hartington. This site definitely meets our needs.”
Economic Development Board member Brandon Baller told council members the Development Corporation did not choose the location being considered for the new motel.
“We had made the decision to not be involved in choosing the site for the project,” Baller said.
A land agreement has been signed, according to Rob Miller.
“This is not a small project. This has been brewing for a long time,” Miller said. “It was hard to find a piece of ground. From what we had to choose from, this was the only spot. We do hate that people have to be displaced.”
Chris Miller, one of the land owners, said selling the land had been a difficult decision to make.
“When the trailer park was put in it was done to serve a need in Hartington. It was a tough decision to make,” Miller said. “We do have a concern for the residents that are there. We will be working with them – but change is never easy. The residents will have time to relocate.”