Summerside hopes land transfer offer will kickstart stalled hotel project

The City of Summerside is hoping a land transfer deal with developers will pave the way for a new hotel at Credit Union Place. The project would see 1.86 acres of city-owned land sold for one dollar.

Construction has been delayed by COVID-19 pandemic, rising building material costs

Summerside officials hope a hotel will help Credit Union Place host additional and larger signature events after the pandemic is over. (Nicole Williams/CBC)

A proposed hotel attached to Credit Union Place in Summerside, P.E.I. is a step closer to construction.

The city is hoping a land transfer deal with developers will pave the way for a new hotel to be built at Credit Union Place.

Council is prepared to sell 1.86 acres of city-owned land for $1 to make the deal happen. The fair market value of the land is estimated at under $99,000.

Officials first announced the 100-room hotel project in July 2019. The Microtel Inn and Suites was originally slated to open in 2021, connected to the main lobby of Credit Union Place by a breezeway.

J.P. Desrosiers, the city's director of community services, said the COVID-19 pandemic and rising building material costs have stalled the hotel plans.

"The future of hotels in the midst of a pandemic is a little bit uncertain," he said, though he added: "The fact that the developer is still continuously communicating with us is positive."

The land is currently zoned for a hotel and the city has been trying to attract a developer for years. It hopes a facility will allow Credit Union Place to host larger events and conventions.

The stalled project included plans for a pool, gym facilities, meeting spaces and restaurants. It was expected to create about 30 full and part-time jobs.

'We're still hopeful that the project will move forward,' said J.P. Desrosiers, the community services director for the City of Summerside. (Steve Bruce/CBC)

While the proposal opens the door for the transfer, the land would not officially change hands unless the project moves forward.

Desrosiers said the original developers are still involved and the transfer could prevent delays during construction season.

"It's just so that if the project does proceed, we won't have to wait for that two-week process because it will already have gone through," he said.

"We're still hopeful that the project will move forward."

There is a two-week period for the public to provide feedback on the transfer.

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