Downtown has been missing out, RIDA President Ira Mitzner tells Bisnow: “A CVB study found we lost 630,000 room nights from conventions” between 2008 and 2012 because of a “lack of activity” around the George R. Brown Convention Center — the largest in Texas, says Mitzner, but only the fourth-most booked. Swamplot reported in December that RIDA worked with Morris Architects to develop a 30-story, 1,000-room Marriott Marquis — you might remember the rendering of a Texas-shaped lazy river on the roof. And other developments are coming. Houston First COO Peter McStravick lays them out to Bisnow step by step:
1 is the Marriott Marquis. 2 is owned by HISD and will be a high school for visual and performing arts, and the western half of block 3 may become a limited-service hotel. 4 is Houston First’s tract (1.5 blocks) and 5 is the site of the new [1,800-space parking] garage. 6 will house the Nau Center for Texas Cultural Heritage, and 7 (two blocks) will be the Finger 8-story tower.
Houston First wants that tract to become apartments and retail; the Finger tower of apartments and retail is planned for the same site where the Ben Milam Hotel stood until it went crumbling down in a cloud of glory in early December.
- Convention District Makeover [Bisnow]
- Morris Architects unveils downtown convention center hotel design features [Houston Business Journal]
- Previously on Swamplot: A Texas Island on the Next Convention Center Hotel