Early Wednesday afternoon community leaders broke ground on what they say will be the finest hotel and convention center in Lubbock.
Though most of us who live in Lubbock may never stay in this hotel, come Spring 2009, the hotel means new job opportunities and big money for Lubbock.
"Lubbock deserves a first class, 4-star hotel and it's been a long time coming," said Marc McDougal.
For the McDougal family this new hotel is the completion of a dream 10 years in the making.
"This is what we talked about when we announced the project. Was having a hotel and convention center that not only compliments Texas Tech University but also downtown Lubbock," McDougal added.
The Overton Hotel and Convention Center will be a 304 room, 238,000 square foot, $70 million addition to the Lubbock economy that, at 15 stories, will also change the skyline of the city. But that's not all.
"Three hundred new jobs that did not exist here. You're looking at that, plus you're looking at a higher level of charge for the room rate. So you're increasing the taxes and the benefit to the community," said Marcy Jarrett with Visit Lubbock.
The average room at The Overton Hotel will cost more than $200 per night. That money will turn into revenue for the city because of the hotel/motel tax.
"It's going to be tremendous. I mean we're into the multiple millions from this structure alone because of the proximity to Tech and the recruitment tool for Tech as well," said Jarrett.
And a 50,000 square foot convention center is expected to bring in more than just out of town guests.
"You're going to see a lot of different conventions come to town and spend their money here that would have never happened without this facility here," said McDougal.
"This just gives us another tool in our belt to go after groups that might not have looked at Lubbock before," said Jarrett.
And not too long from now they'll be breaking ground on a 90,000 square foot, high-end shopping center and more student-housing with other amenities. All part of the McDougal master plan.
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