The future of a major hotel and office building in the downtown core will become clearer this week as the 2G Group finalizes discussion with developers.
“We have two groups interested, one is a hotel chain and the other is a collection of business people interested in more multi-use purposes like office space,” said 2G Group CEO Geoff Greenwell, adding he expects to award the project to one of the two in early July.
Regardless of who the successful developer is, Greenwell said the next step will be to go to the City of Prince Rupert and request a variance for the site. The area is zoned for a building up to five storeys, but it will need to be bigger than what current bylaws allow.
“Whichever group takes this, to finish it inside and out will be about $50 million. That is a lot of money, but in order to get a return on investment it would need to be seven storeys,” he said, noting the development could bring more than $1 million in property taxes to city coffers.
“There is some economic feasibility to consider. If the city wants this $50 million investment, it will have to go to seven stories … the variance process invites public comment, so mayor, council and the people will have to decide.”
As well as potential developers, Greenwell is in discussions with the Metlakatla and Lax Kw’alaams bands to ensure they realize benefit from the project through either a partnership or a stake in the building.
The 2G Group announced on April 17 its plans to build an integrated office, hotel, apartment and restaurant complex at the site of the old Elizabeth Apartments. The project, in partnership with the Blended Capital Group and Stuart Olson Dominion, is expected to be open next summer.