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Keller Development Corp. Wins Approvals for a 97-room Holiday Inn and Suites
 to be Connected to the Thelma Keller Convention Center in Effingham, Illinois

By Samantha Newburn, Effingham Daily News, Ill.McClatchy-Tribune Regional News

November 25, 2009 --A five-story hotel is scheduled to go up soon in Effingham.

Holiday Inn and Suites obtained a variance from the Effingham Zoning Board of Appeals Tuesday night for a hotel that will be five stories tall.

The existing height limit is three stories in a highway commercial district, and that required Keller Development Corp. to obtain a variance before construction begins.

Greg Webb, who presented the hotel plan to the board, said the variance was needed for the 78-foot pitched roof.

In September, Effingham Plan Commission approved a site plan and preliminary and final plats of the subdivision where Thelma Keller Convention Center, the proposed hotel and Hilton Garden Inn are located.

The new hotel will be connected to the convention center on the south end. The Hilton is attached at the north end of the convention center.

Ninety-seven guest rooms will be located in the 50,038-square-foot building that will take up 16,432 square feet south of the convention center.

Thirty-six king rooms, 61 double-queen rooms, eight two-room king suites and eight two-room queen suites will be available.

Fire Chief Joe Holomy said the building will be fully covered by sprinklers, fully alarmed and will have water hoses in the stairwells. Holomy also said fire truck ladders will be able to reach all five stories.

Building Official Bruce Devall said the Holiday Inn and Suites will be a masonry bearing structure and will be connected to the convention center by concrete masonry. The outside will consist of cultured stone.

Some of the additional parking required for the new addition will be constructed off site to the east of the existing parking lot that is southeast of the convention center. Fifty-two spaces of the 181 required and 203 that will be available will be located to the south and far east of the existing parking lot.

Samantha Newburn may be reached at 217-347-7151 ext. 131 or samantha.newburn@effinghamdailynews.com.

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To see more of the Effingham Daily News, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://effinghamdailynews.com.

Copyright (c) 2009, Effingham Daily News, Ill.

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