A positive AURA

Posted 3/3/15

Dave Chandler has a curious and completely misinformed vendetta against the Arvada Urban Renewal Authority. A few weeks ago, he drafted an editorial in another publication titled “Arvada urban renewal: Everything that can be wrong with local …

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A positive AURA

Posted

Dave Chandler has a curious and completely misinformed vendetta against the Arvada Urban Renewal Authority. A few weeks ago, he drafted an editorial in another publication titled “Arvada urban renewal: Everything that can be wrong with local government.” Last week, he submitted to the Arvada Press a guest column titled “Arvada government’s hotel bailout scheme equals Hilton handout,” referring to the Hilton Garden Hotel which is proposed at the former Brooklyn’s restaurant site and now temporary home of the Vineyard Church at 5445 Olde Wadsworth Boulevard.

Let me begin by stating that it has long been a goal of the Arvada City Council to establish a hotel in our community. With the exception of an extended stay hotel on Sheridan Boulevard, this City of nearly 110,000 people does not have lodging opportunities for visitors or people in town on business.

Mr. Chandler states that “Arvada government has a scheme to give away more than $2.7 million to a private hotel developer.” What Mr. Chandler fails to disclose is that any money paid to the developer is generated exclusively from the development. There is no transfer of money from the general fund. In fact, the agreement states that the authority will be paid back in full over the life of the agreement.

Mr. Chandler also accuses the authority of deciding “that this is where a hotel ought to be in Arvada. The market place isn’t deciding; the hotel industry isn’t deciding; free enterprise isn’t deciding. The government is deciding.” To the contrary, it is a well-known fact that the developer approached the authority with the request to construct a hotel on the site. The market place is absolutely deciding the location. Five different hotel studies conducted between 2003 and 2014 have independently concurred that a hotel will be successful in the vicinity of I70 and Wadsworth. In fact in 2011, a hotel developer commissioned a study to look specifically at 5445 Olde Wadsworth (the site of the proposed hotel). This study states, “The results of our analysis of supply and demand in the Arvada and surrounding competitive markets revealed pent-up demand for hotel rooms in Arvada. We recommend that the proposed subject property operate as an upscale, all-suites, limited-service hotel.”

Mr. Chandler states that “the government tries to paint ‘positive’ impacts from this project.” Indeed, the impacts will be very positive for our community. It is estimated, for example, that hotel guests will spend approximately $3 million in the local economy annually, and generate more than $100,000 in additional sales tax. Over the next 17 years, the hotel will generate over $6 million in sales, property, and lodging taxes that will go directly to AURA and the City of Arvada. Finally, the hotel will provide 60–80 new jobs in the area.

I am thrilled to have a hotel, especially one as upscale as a Hilton Garden Inn, located in the vicinity of our bustling Olde Town and the Gold Line transit station. It will provide a much needed amenity to our business and residential community.

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