We know a little more about what’s going to happen on the northwest corner of the intersection of 200 South and West Temple streets in downtown Salt Lake City. That’s the site — adjacent to the Calvin L. Rampton Salt Palace Convention Center — of a proposed convention center hotel that economic development and tourism officials have been pushing for more than a decade.
Preliminary plans and designs were released earlier this month for a 28-story skyscraper with flowing rounded construction and a glass and textured aluminum exterior. The plans have the $337 million development being built into the southeast corner of the convention center to allow easy flow of convention attendees between the two facilities. The design echoes the architectural line of the adjacent Salt Palace.
The 616,000-square-foot hotel will have about 725 guest rooms, developers said, and is planned to have a 25,852-square- ballroom, several meeting rooms, a rooftop garden area and a restaurant and corner market. The main (south-facing) entrance will be sandwiched between massive digital billboards, including a three-story-tall screen on the side of the tower.
“The economic vision will be complemented by an elegant urban and architectural design that is compatible with the surrounding buildings while sensitive to becoming a new urban marker and presence on the skyline,” John Portman & Associates, one of the project’s developers, said in design-approval documents submitted to Salt Lake City. A site-design review by the city is required on buildings planned taller than 120 feet.
Officials from the area’s convention, tourism and economic development offices welcome the progress toward getting the hotel built, citing the need for additional accommodations in the neighborhood for convention-goers. The city has long been hobbled in its efforts to bring in larger conventions and other events by a lack of hotel rooms downtown. Officials were close to a convention hotel deal in 2015 with Dallas-based Omni Hotels, but the deal fell through. Last fall, Portman and Ivins-based DDRM Cos. were given up to $75 million in post-construction tax rebates over 20 years by the Governor’s Office of Economic Development to build the hotel.
The hotel is scheduled to open in spring 2022.