There was plenty of fanfare when Shamrock Development was picked by the city and the Metropolitan Entertainment and Convention Authority to turn parking lots at 10th Street and Capitol Avenue into another full-service hotel.
That was November 2011, and developers were saying they’d have the hotel –and apartments and shops and office space — completed by December 2014. But as time went by, that schedule seemed to be getting more off track. MECA’s recent move to sign off on its part of the deal, however, signals that the project is again picking up speed. Shamrock now says it expects to break ground by the end of the year and will have much of the development wrapped up 18 to 24 months later.
So what was the hold up?
Mike Moylan, Shamrock’s president, said the project’s timeline was pushed back by several issues. First, there was the challenge of finding a company willing to open up a new, full-service hotel in a less-than-stellar economy. Then, there was a long process of back and forth with the city and MECA on a purchase agreement.
“Bottom line is that since the award, we have been negotiating to put things in order for the development,” Moylan said.
And more recently, he said, Shamrock has been sorting out environmental issues on the site — a complication of building on what was once an industrial site. He said there were a few tanks buried on the site that will be removed.
Moylan said he expects the purchase agreement to show up on a City Council agenda in about a month.