ALBANY, GA (WALB) - An over $13 million project to acquire a historic six-story building is set to bring a number of new jobs to Albany, according to officials.
The Albany Downtown Development Authority (DDA) voted Monday to adopt a redevelopment plan of the former Water, Gas, and Light Commission building, which for half a century was one of the finest hotels in the South, the Hotel Gordon.
The plan includes a proposal from J Car Development, LLC to acquire the 58,000 square foot property.
The $13.6 million project will create at least 43 new jobs, officials said.
City officials said in a release that the “Dual Powered Development Project” will have “several beneficial economic factors.”
“As a developer and entrepreneur, I thrive on opportunities that connect people, community and technology," Jason Benedict with J Car Development said. "Downtown Albany is full of what I call ‘untapped opportunities’ and the 207 Pine Avenue property is just one among many of those opportunities. This project will be the first and only one of its kind, and it will integrate technology and development in a way that’s never been done before. We are excited to work with the city to bring this ‘Dual Powered Redevelopment Project’ to Downtown Albany, Georgia.”
The project will be a mixed-use development which includes a boutique hotel with a “well-known and respected hotel flag affiliate,” City of Albany officials said. The project will also include a blockchain technology data center. A blockchain is a distributed digital ledger or database and which cannot be manipulated, according to telehouse.com.
“The 88-room hotel will have a unique guest rooftop experience, an event center, bar, and restaurant,” officials said in a release.
According to city officials, the data center will give technology students an opportunity to “obtain valuable experience in a state-of-the-art data center environment.”
”This project is a game changer for the City of Albany," Thelma Johnson, downtown development authority chairperson, said. "It creates both economic impacts and provides a financial return. 207 Pine Avenue has been off the tax roles for well over 40 years. With the development of this project, the tax increments alone are a gain for the City of Albany. We have a win/win with this development, capital investment into downtown Albany, increase in property taxes, and a revenue-generating project. This is the type of project DDA’s love to have in the mix.”
The project will be presented to the Albany City Commission at the April 9 commission meeting.
“The economic energy of the downtown continues to incite investor interest, and the confidence in the direction of the downtown is definitely an essential factor in the project being announced today,” Lequrica Gaskins, Albany downtown manager, said.