Town of Berwick studying potential development of branded, mid-scale hotel
a hotel development and council wanted to investigate the feasibility of such a proposal.
About two months ago, the town contracted Squires for a six-month period. Payne said they are hopeful there could soon be a proposal before council. The town doesn’t have a preferred location in mind but the study identified the close proximity of Berwick to Highway 101 as a positive.
“I assume that anywhere on the northern end of town would be preferred, as far as what the study proposed were concerned,” Payne said.
He said the investigation, at least to this point, has been positive. A hotel has the potential to serve as an economic development driver for the town, especially considering there is limited hotel space in western Kings County.
Having a hotel in the Berwick area would complement the KMCC and other amenities nicely. It would make Berwick more attractive as a destination for events held over multiple days – and the town isn’t far from 14 Wing Greenwood.
Payne said since the town has invested in a study and a consultant and there is interest in identifying potential local investors, a public announcement about the project was made at the Christmas reception.
Mayor Don Clarke said the town has seen considerable growth during the past few years and a hotel development would be “a great addition to the town and area.”
He said discussions of the possibility of a hotel go back at least to the time that the KMCC was built and it has been mentioned as part of various economic development initiatives.
Recent developments such as the second phase of the KMCC and the inclusion of a curling facility have led people to speculate if there isn’t a business case for a hotel in the Berwick area.
“The lack of a hotel space is a problem,” Clarke said.
He said the study had positive results and it looks like a hotel would be a viable possibility. The town met with potential investors but Clarke said it quickly became evident that they had to engage someone with expertise to see if the idea could be taken to the next level.
He said Squires has made significant headway during the past couple of months and they are hopeful the announcement of the project could spur some interest among potential local investors.
As the investigation progresses, Clarke said there would be a need to engage the public in discussions surrounding details such as location.