“We’ve been looking at this market for a few years, and we are happy to obtain this location and the opportunity to build another nice hotel here,” said Jim Daly, president of construction and renovations for Daly Seven.
The Danville-based firm previously developed a Fairfield Inn and Suites that is adjacent to the planned five-story structure.
“We’ve continued to see a lot of growth in college towns,” Daly added.
The new hotel will actually be home to two Marriott-branded franchises. Springhill Suites is marketed to the business traveler and TownePlace is geared for extended stays.
The Flaming Wok & Teppan Yaki restaurant and a glass warehouse currently occupy the 3.7-acre site.
“The existing buildings on the site would be demolished and there is a three-quarter-acre outparcel that is being reserved for future development,” said Albemarle County planner J.T. Newberry.
Commissioners also recommended approval of a parking structure. Newberry said it would not be visible from U.S. 29.
No members of the public spoke during the hearing.
The commission’s recommendation comes at a time when several hundred additional hotel rooms are either under construction or in the planning stages.
“We’re one of the top markets in the state of Virginia for occupancy percentages, and that’s why we’re so attractive to developers,” Warner said. “People see more opportunity here.”
Warner said there are currently more than 3,700 hotel rooms in the two localities.
More hotels are on the way, including one further north on U.S. 29.
Staybridge Suites has submitted a site development plan for a four-story building with 103 rooms at the northeast corner of Timberwood Boulevard and Meeting Street in Hollymead Town Center.
Several new hotels also are being planned within Charlottesville’s city limits.
Land clearing is well under way for the new 117-room Fairfield Inn & Suites at the corner of Cherry Avenue and Ridge Street. There is still no timeline for when developer John Dewberry might resume construction of the long-stalled Landmark Hotel on the Downtown Mall.
A 103-room hotel at 201 Monticello Ave. is in review and nearing approval, according to city planner Brian Haluska. A final site plan for a nine-story hotel at 1106 W. Main St. has been approved, and Haluska said construction could begin in September.
Next week, the Charlottesville Board of Architectural Review will meet with the new developers of 501 W. Main St. Architect Bill Atwood had been seeking design approval to allow construction of a residential and office building, but he is no longer associated with the project. Instead, new developers want to construct a hotel.
Warner said that if recent trends are any indication, the new rooms will satisfy growing demand.
“The new inventory added in recent years — such as the Marriott Residence Inn, the Hyatt Place and Homewood Suites — really hasn’t made a dent in our occupancy percentages,” said Warner. “The average daily rate that is obtained for guest rooms in the area is still strong and climbing.”
Warner said more hotels in Albemarle and Charlottesville mean that visitors won’t have to travel to Waynesboro and Staunton to find a room during peak weekends.
“There are so many reasons to come to our area,” Warner said. “Six to 10 years ago, we were mainly known as being the home of Monticello and the University of Virginia. The destination has evolved, I think, with a lot more to offer in terms of culinary offerings, wineries and, of course, weddings.”
Warner said, as more rooms are built, it is possible that there could be a slight dip in the occupancy rate.
“All things considered, I think that we are good to go in looking forward to having this additional inventory,” Warner said. “We will see how the market adjusts to all these added hotel rooms.”