Council hears concerns about status of downtown hotel project

Todd Hanes, owner of the former location of The Station Inn along Depot Street, addressed members of city council on Monday evening, informing them that Bob Yoder has still not closed on any of the properties in that location and requesting their assistance in moving the project forward. Yoder is involved with plans to purchase the former Station Inn property, as well as other properties in that area, so that a hotel can be built. "It was announced at the last council meeting that the closing of the properties down there would be the following Friday or Monday at the latest. Well there have been two Fridays and we're on the second Monday as of tonight," Hanes said Monday evening. "I didn't know if council could do anything to nail Mr. Yoder down on the time frame."Council members stated that they were unaware that Yoder had not yet closed on the properties and asked if Hanes had been given any indication as to what was causing the delay. "Money," Hanes said. "Funding keeps getting delayed. We don't really know if it's really happening or not. That's what we don't know."Hanes also explained that he needed to know if the sale of the properties was going to move forward because he was recently presented with another option regarding his property."I'm in a unique situation because I have another buyer, but that puts the city in a position and it also puts my neighbors in a position and I don't really want to do that, but I don't know how much longer I can wait. This has been going on for two and a half years," Hanes said. "I was wondering, can the city do something? Have a meeting with him? Nail him down?"City Solicitor Mark Jacob responded that the city would not be able to do anything until the matter was discussed with City Manager Dave Greene, who was not in attendance at Monday evening's city council meeting. Public Works Director Mike Mullaney, who filled in for Greene at the city council meeting, indicated that Greene would be back at work today. "What I would do is when Dave gets back, I will speak with him regarding the issue that you brought up and have him contact Mr. Yoder to see what the status is," Jacob said. Hanes explained that he had not been able to get a direct answer from Yoder about the status of the project.