Hotel and water park project sailing through approvals

7/17/2013

By SCOTT AUST

By SCOTT AUST

saust@gctelegram.com

The proposed redevelopment of the former Fun Center property near the bypass and Schulman Avenue continues to breeze through city approvals as the Garden City Commission on Tuesday approved three items related to the project.

Local hotelier Amro Samy plans to build a nearly $25 million development that includes a 22,000-square-foot indoor water park, a 90-room hotel and a 6,000 square-foot Old Chicago restaurant.

Generally located at 2800 E. Schulman Ave., south of Menards, some dirt work has started on the project.

Tuesday, the commission scheduled a public hearing for Aug. 20 to hear comments about the tax increment financing plan and the creation of a community improvement district being used to help finance the project.

The TIF allows increased property taxes generated by the improved property to be used to finance construction of infrastructure for the project, and the CID would allow property owners to levy an additional 1 percent sales tax on their customers, not only within the new development but on sales at the Sleep Inn and Clarion Inn, both Samy-owned properties.

Financing of the water park will also use transient guest taxes collected from the new hotel and the Sleep Inn.

The commission also accepted a petition during Tuesday's meeting requesting the creation of the CID, which includes property within the development, a couple of existing buildings in the Stone Creek Addition, and the Clarion Inn and Sleep Inn.

The city created the TIF district on July 2.

Hard construction costs estimate the hotel will cost about $7 million, the restaurant about $2.9 million and the water park around $7.7 million. The remainder of the other $24.2 million estimated cost includes things such as site work, land acquisition, utility and street construction, and soft costs such as architectural, engineering, and legal work and miscellaneous other costs associated with developing property.

Developers hope to begin work on the restaurant and hotel in the fall.

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