The Allentown, Pa., Neighborhood Improvement Zone Development Authority has given initial approval to a $16.6 million plan to renovate the city’s Holiday Inn hotel.
City Center Investment Corporation (CCIC), which plans to complete its purchase of the 35-year old property by the end of the year, will cut the current number of rooms by more than half, creating a 100-room hotel with expanded meeting rooms, a renovated lobby and exterior, and other features, as well as approximately 30,000-sq ft of office space. The hotel, which would remain open during the estimated year-long renovation project will also be rebranded and operated under a new name to attract business travelers.
Originally built and operated as a Hilton Hotel, what was once Allentown’s premier downtown hotel suffered in step with the city’s declining economic fortunes. Newer, more modern hotels have capitalized on Allentown’s recent revival, leaving the outdated style of the Holiday Inn behind.
CCIC will complement the hotel renovation with the construction of a seven-floor mixed-use retail and residential building on a currently vacant site nearby. The company will be able to borrow up to $235 million via the authority to help finance both projects, which are scheduled to begin next year.
According to its website, CCIC has overseen the planning, design, financing, construction, marketing, leasing, and management of more than 1.4 million square feet of new development.