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Garfield Traub Development and Armada Hoffler Chosen as Finalists to Develop
 a 700 room Convention Center Hotel in Virginia Beach, Virginia

By Deirdre Fernandes, The Virginian-Pilot, Norfolk, Va.McClatchy-Tribune Regional News

September 16, 2008 - VIRGINIA BEACH -- The city has narrowed its search to two finalists to develop a convention center headquarters hotel. This morning, Dallas-based Garfield Traub Development and Armada Hoffler, a local firm, were chosen to move forward with more detailed discussions.

The two companies have proposed 700-room hotels to help the city lure larger groups of convention-goers to its new convention center.

A team made up of city staff, council members, and development authority officials picked Armada Hoffler and Garfield Traub out of four proposals. The team passed on plans by Garrison Walker for a 400-room hotel and Harmony Hospitality for a renovation and expansion of its Doubletree Hotel next to the convention center.

The appeal of both Armada Hoffler and Garfield Traub was their experience in building and operating headquarters hotels and their ability to tap financing for the project, said Page Lea, vice chair of the development authority.

In the coming months the selection committee and a consultant will review the proposals in more detail, including the companies' financing plans and potential taxpayer contribution.

Armada Hoffler anticipates the first phase of its plan, with 400 hundred rooms, will cost $110 million. Garfield Traub expects its first phase, with a similar number of rooms and a 650-space parking deck, to cost $112 million.

Read more details about this in Wednesday's edition of The Virginian-Pilot.

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To see more of the The Virginian-Pilot, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.pilotonline.com.

Copyright (c) 2008, The Virginian-Pilot, Norfolk, Va.

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