The plan to renovate Akron's City Center Hotel could lead to greater development in an area that’s slowly seeing people move downtown.
Cuyahoga Falls-based Testa Companies plans to invest $25 million in the building. The hotel had struggled for the past decade before closing last year. The proposed redevelopment would set aside six floors for a new hotel, and the rest for apartments.
Akron City Planner Jason Segedy says it’s one of several much-needed projects downtown, along with the Landmark Building and the United Building.
“Not only are they great residential re-uses, but they're kind of in the place where we really need them right now downtown."
Segedy says the specifics of the plan are still being worked out, and he’s glad the building won’t sit dormant while that part of town is redeveloped.
“We kind of have had this resurgence in the north end of downtown with Northside; with the area near Crave. Kind of a similar thing going on in the south end of downtown with the student apartments and where Bricco is. This middle part -- there are a lot of government offices [and] people come in in the morning and then they leave at night. What I really love about this Testa project: we kind of get that middle part of downtown finally activated.”
The City Center Hotel opened as a Holiday Inn at 20 W. Mill St. in 1971. Segedy says the new hotel will likely be part of a national chain, making it more visible on booking websites.
Testa Companies would manage the hotel with Concord Hospitality. The two firms also run the nearby, recently opened, 10-story Northside Courtyard by Marriott.