In early 2013, Paulding County and the Cities of Hiram and Dallas entered into a partnership facilitated by the Chamber of Commerce to conduct a feasibility study/market analysis for a possible civic center and/or conference center with adjoining hotel in Paulding County.
The Chamber of Commerce took the initiative to seek the assistance of a professional consulting group, Key Advisors Hospitality Consulting, to perform this market analysis. The Chamber Board, under the leadership of Don Barbour, Chairman, and Carolyn Wright, Chamber President and CEO, approved the funding of this study. Hiram was honored to agree to dedicate a portion of its Hotel/Motel taxes provided to the Chamber to promote tourism and trade for the purpose of funding this feasibility study/market analysis.
Linda C. Wilson, president of Key Advisors, Inc., presented the results of this market and financial analysis to the Paulding County Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors on Wednesday, Aug. 14. The objective of the study was to determine the need for hotel and conference space in Paulding County. The scope of work was to assess the current inventory of hotel product and meeting/event space, assess the current and future requirements for meeting space and upscale lodging, define a market driven building program, and estimate the financial performance for the recommended facility and building cost.
The recommendations based on her findings were that Paulding County could be well served by a hotel with approximately 80 guest rooms affiliated with a national select-service brand. The conference center, as part of the select-service hotel would have approximately 12,000 to 15,000 square feet of net rentable meeting space (163 SF of meeting space/guest room) a ballroom containing approximately 9,000 square feet to 10,000 square feet (divisible) and an additional 3,000 to 5,000 square feet breakout. The desirable acreage is estimated to be five to seven acres + with future expansion potential. The area in which this hotel conference could best serve the county and surrounding region would be near US 278/GA 120.
The estimated value of the project, not including market valuation is, is $8,900,000. The estimated cost of the hotel is $8,560,000. The estimated cost of the conference center is $8,450,000. The total project cost (not including land) based on the market analysis as provided by Key Advisors, Inc. is $17,000,000.
The next steps as recommended by the consultant are to finalize the report, identify potential public funding sources, prepare a solicitation document, and approach brands/developers. Some other issues that remain unresolved include establishing partnerships, performance clauses, operating losses, ownership, upkeep, uses, expansion, etc. Paulding County, the cities of Hiram and Dallas and the Chamber of Commerce look forward to working together to further their shared vision.