Avista mulls possibilities for motel site
Rodeway Inn City Center closes; lot could become parking complex or parkJuly 29th, 1999
Rodeway Inn City Center, at 827 W. First, has closed and the owner of the property, Avista Corp., is working to make the lot the motel sits on available for future development that could help rejuvenate that area of downtown Spokane.
Possible uses for the property that have surfaced in meetings between Avista and interested, but unnamed, developers include a parking garage and retail complex, a park, or a high-rise building, says Kim Pearman-Gillman, general manager of Avista Development, a subsidiary of Avista Corp.
There are plenty of that type of hotels serving downtown, and theres an opportunity for something really special there, Pearman-Gillman says.
She says as part of a long-term plan, the creation of a local improvement district to fund a combination parking garage-retail complex on the site has been considered. The parking facility could serve Steam Plant Square, a reopened Davenport Hotel, and The Metropolitan Performing Arts Center, as well as boost other businesses in the area.
Avista doesnt plan to develop the property itself, and probably would sell the property, which it bought several years ago when an oil spill was found to have spread to the lot from the utilitys former central steam plant.
Oil-spill cleanup work was completed last year, Pearman-Gillman says. Monitoring wells and other underground equipment will continue to operate at the spill site, but wont impede future development, she says.
The Rodeway Inn City Center, operated for Avista by Spokane-based Hospitality Associates Inc., closed at the end of June, says Pam Baker, who had been general manager of the motel. Hospitality Associates is overseeing the sale of the motels furnishings and fixtures.
Pearman-Gillman says Avista is preparing the lot for whatever new use might be chosen. She says the motel building probably will be torn down unless the selected developer sees a value in keeping it. No timeline for the demolition or for the selection of a developer has been set.