“We are excited to see plans starting to unfold for a major revitalization of industrial property that will attract tourists, events, provide jobs, and fuel economic growth in the region,” said Allison Colthorp, executive director of Tourism Ch’illiwack.
Chilliwack has had a dearth of hotel accommodations since the closure of the former Best Western, and others.
The new hotel property will become an anchor tenant on a 4.5 acre parcel at the Fraser Gateway Centre, part of a new 12.4-acre development.
Dealing with a spike in demand for Chilliwack hotel rooms, “this will help alleviate that pressure,” Colthorp said.
“Marriott is a trusted and respected hotel brand and we are thrilled to partner with P.R. Hotels, and Meridian Development, to bring this much-needed accommodation to a key location in Chilliwack,” says Denciti CEO Garry Fawley.
The recently-inked agreement with Denciti Development will facilitate the return of the Marriott name to Chilliwack when the hotel is built in 2025.
“What a great concept to put on the highway,” Fawley said. “It’s going to be a beacon.”
Fawley was the one who identified the site’s potential at the growing Lickman Interchange.
“It’s a unique piece of real estate,” he said. “We had to be patient to find the right tenant because it’s a destination site.”
Denciti acquired 12.4 acres at 43971 Industrial Way and 7985 Lickman Road in Chilliwack in September of 2021.
The hotel will be on the southern portion of Fraser Gateway Centre, along with the Tim Hortons and a liquor store. The Tim Hortons will be receiving reconfigured access and parking, with a new 15,000-square foot building for the liquor store and other retail tenants.
Chilliwack’s strong potential as one of the fastest-growing B.C. cities in Canada in the last census was central to the decision to build a new hotel on the highway.
“There was a return to travel and tourism across B.C. in 2022 and a resulting resurgence in the demand for hotel rooms,” says Jeff Krivoshen, CEO of P.R. Hotels Ltd. “We chose this location because we see promise in Chilliwack and are committed to growing with the community for the long-term.”
Denciti is also in talks with tenants for a service station and family restaurant. The northern portion of the development will be a light-industrial business park with up to 25 small and large-bay warehouse units.
“The plans for this top-tier site align squarely with our objective to see underutilized properties in the community redeveloped to support increased economic activity,” said Brian Coombes, president of Chilliwack Economic Partners Corp (CEPCO).
For the past few years, demand for industrial land has skyrocketed in Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley, putting additional pressure on the Lower Mainland where industrial vacancy rates are below one per cent.
The development permit for the new hotel was issued to Denciti by the City of Chilliwack on June 20.
Construction is expected to begin in Fall 2023.
The construction of the Fraser Gateway Centre will be completed in phases and the hotel is expected to open by summer 2025.
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