Westfield officials received six responses to a recent request for proposals to develop a hotel at Grand Park—but no project has been selected.
The Westfield City Council on Monday approved rezoning 5.26 acres of city-owned land immediately to the west of the 371,000-square-foot indoor soccer facility to allow for a new hotel or lodging facility. But members did not discuss a specific developer.
Westfield chief of staff Todd Burtron told the IBJ on Tuesday afternoon that the city is prioritizing projects based on financial risk, quality of the product, experience of the development team and ability to complete the project in 2016.
Burtron said Greenwood-based Jonathan Byrd’s submitted one of the six applications—and is considered a "strong contender"— but has not been selected. The food catering company is already expected to have a presence at Grand Park. In July, it secured the naming rights for the 87,000-square-foot basketball and volleyball facility that is expected to open in January.
The area with the hotel would be known as “Haven at Grand Park” and it would be an independent brand, according to Burtron.
Craig Wood, whose family owns a majority of the land in the center of Grand Park, sent Westfield Plan Commission members a letter earlier this month requesting the city provide more information on the project before moving forward.
“While I am very encouraged about the potential asset it will bring to the Grand Park and the indoor soccer facility, my concerns are about the details and timeliness of their availability relative to the necessary approval of the project,” Wood wrote.
The Wood family owns the property surrounded by the 5.26-acre U-shaped site on 191st Street. Wood suggested information including the size of the building, value of the building, whether the land is being leased or purchased and the price point for the lease or purchase be shared, but city officials have not released those details.
Burtron said the city is still negotiating with the developers who responded to the RFP.
Westfield has seen a spike in demand for hotels since opening the 400-acre sports campus in 2013, but only has one hotel within city limits currently. A 153-room Cambria Suites is in the works, and development plans include space for a four-story hotel near the southwest corner of U.S. 31 and State Road 32.