LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – The University of Louisville is working with a developer to build a six-story Marriott branded “conference center hotel” with a one-story Target store and restaurant near the heart of the Belknap campus.

The hotel would essentially provide an on-campus option for visitors who currently diverted to accommodations near the airport or downtown, as well as educational opportunities for business students and a potential future hospitality program, said Dan Durbin, chief financial officer of U of L.

“This is a facility right on the edge of our campus that offers our students a lot of comfort,” Durbin told the WDRB.

The development would replace the aging, single story Cardinal Center on S. 4th Street and Cardinal Boulevard that housed the former Gray’s Bookstore and currently has a grocery store, laundromat, and other businesses, according to documents approved for a U of L . A committee of the Board of Trustees has been prepared, which will deal with the project today.

Provident Resources Group, a nonprofit development company based in Baton Rouge, LA, would build and manage the hotel until the bonds to fund the project are fully repaid. Thereafter, U of L is entitled to full ownership of the hotel or its net cash flow after expenses according to the termsheet.

Provident did not respond to a request for comment. It has built hotels, conference centers and student dormitories at several other universities, according to his website.

Durbin said formal university support for the project will allow Provident to investigate the feasibility of funding. With U of L as the beneficiary of the project, the developer can get cheaper, tax-exempt bonds, Durbin said.

The trustee’s finance committee is being asked to sign a non-binding letter of intent on Thursday to move forward with legal arrangements for the project.

U of L has “no financial obligations” under the business other than leasing the portion of the property it owns to house it. However, according to ownership records, the site is primarily owned by a private party, Cardinal Center LLC.

“This is … a very attractive proposition. And that’s one of the reasons we’re interested in it,” said Durbin.

A lawyer representing the partners of the Cardinal Center did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The documents do not include a timeline for the project, and Durbin said Provident is controlling the timing.