ESCANABA – A proposed hotel development on the site of the former Delta County Jail has been scrapped after the developer made no progress on the project, but city officials say the city will continue to look for other developers for the site.

The city and county have been partnering with Proxima Management Group since 2019 on the $ 23 million project, which will include a $ 13 million hotel and mixed-use retail and residential space on the prison grounds and on adjacent lots of occupied land would have been through the former Delta County Chamber of Commerce building. Early projections suggested the four-story, 80-90-room hotel would be completed next month after an 18-month construction period, but no construction or demolition work was done on the site.

“I am very disappointed with Proxima Management. You had two years and nothing happened except the work the state of Michigan paid for. said Escanaba Mayor Marc Tall, noting that no city or county money has been allocated to the project.

After Tall, City Manager Patrick Jordan and City Attorney John MA Bergman met with County Administrator Emily DeSalvo and Delta County Commissioner Patrick Johnson to discuss the matter, the city council held a closed session on September 2 to discuss the future of the agreement City with Proxima regular city council meeting.

In a press release released on Friday, the city said it had sent a letter to Proxima informing the developer that the city is observing the 60-day notice period required by the agreement.

“Regardless of the Covid-19 pandemic, council members felt that due to the two-year lack of progress in removing the old county jail and months of lack of any communications from developers, the city-Proxima agreement should end,” read the publication partially.

According to Tall, there has been no contact from Proxima for about eight months.

While very little has been done to develop the property, some of the preparatory work completed will be of use to a future developer.

“That brownfield work of looking at how the floors under the prison are, it has to be done anyway, and we have a copy of it so it doesn’t have to be redone for another developer, but that’s where we’re looking for new “ideas”, said Big.

In addition, the site has been designated as fallow land – which would have reduced project costs by reimbursing part of the taxes levied on the property to the developer – and the city’s urban development agency has reached an agreement with Proxima on the distribution of taxes as a result of the Naming the city of Proxima had sweetened the deal by eliminating much of the potential for competitive development. In February 2020, the council approved a three-year moratorium on building new hotels and motels in the city.

“Since this was a Council decision, we need to reverse this, as I expect we will at some point.” said Big.

Although the council “very disappointed” Due to the city’s relationship with Proxima and the end of development, Tall hoped for future development of the site.

“We have a very attractive location. It’s a nice view of the bay. I think we’ll find another developer. “ he said.

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