VANCOUVER, WA-The Vancouver Public Facilities District board will meet Oct. 11 to begin the selection of one of four developers’ proposals to design and build a hotel and conference center in Downtown Vancouver. The developer would pay for the hotel, while the city would pay for the conference center.

Two Texas-based firms–Garfield Traub Development of Dallas and Landmark Organization of Austin-joined Renaissance Resources Group of Chandler, Ariz. and the Port of Vancouver in responding to the city’s request for proposals prior to this week’s deadline. Renaissance, which also had proposed a sports arena, lost exclusive negotiating rights for the project earlier this year after being unable to drum up financing.

The proposals, submitted prior to Wednesday’s deadline, all will need further clarification, according to city officials. All proposals would develop a three-star/three-diamond hotel. Three of the proposals are based on the convention center being built on land south of Esther Short Park, near Sixth and Columbia streets. The Port’s proposal is to build a larger hotel on the site of the Red Lion Hotel at the Quay, which is controlled by West Coast Hotels.

Renaissance proposes a 153-room hotel also operated by West Coast Hotels and a 78,000-sf convention center. Garfield Traub proposes a hotel of at least 150 rooms that would be held in trust for the city by a non-profit entity that would use tax-exempt bonds to finance construction, but did not address the convention center. Landmark also proposes a hotel of at least 150 rooms, which would be operated by Marriott International, financed by U.S. Bancorp/Piper Jaffray and designed by Portland-based Fletcher Farr Ayotte, but also didn’t address the convention center. The Port proposes to replace the Hotel at the Quay with a hotel of at least 300 rooms and says it might be able to make room on the site for the convention center as well.

It may not matter that few addressed the size of the conference center, as it remains in flux. Wednesday also was the deadline to submit bids for naming rights to the conference center, but none came in. That likely means the size of the conference will shrink, but it should still have enough money to operate it. Clark County says it will devote about $500,000 a year in sales tax money to the convention center. The city’s preferred plan up to this point has been for a 174-room hotel and a 28,000 sf convention center.

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