It’s a gravel parking lot now, but a proposed hotel-condo development near Portage and Main is one step closer to reality after a civic committee agreed to allow vehicles to turn into it off of Main Street and to partially close a back alley if nearby property owners agree.
All of the city councillors on the downtown development, heritage and riverbank management committee unanimously agreed today to the proposal by Creswin Properties to allow it to build a 5.4-metre wide opening on the west side of Main Street about 40 metres south of McDermot Avenue.
As well, they also agreed to close part of the back lane between Albert and Main Street — as long as several nearby property owners agree.
The development proposal would see 237 hotel rooms, 30 condo units on the top six floors, a full-service restaurant and 40,000 square feet of office space.
Creswin Properties president Dan Edwards says he is pleased with the support and now they will speak to owners of properties on Albert Street which back onto the public lane running parallel to Main Street to see if they agree with a proposal to partially close the alley. The plan is to prevent cars and delivery vehicles from blocking construction access to the Main Street property, but still allow access to the rear of the buildings.
"We are very encouraged by today’s outcome," he said.
Edwards would not say what hotel is being looked at for coming into the building, but a conceptual drawing has ‘Project W’ in the lower corner and sources have said it is the Westin hotel chain.
But Matt Cornelsen, who owns 61 Albert St., says while he is in favour of the development, he wants to see how it would impact on garbage collection to his building, his loading dock and thru traffic.
"All of our garbage comes out there," Cornelson said.
"But that surface lot has to go."