|By John Guerriero, Erie Times-News,
Pa.McClatchy-Tribune Business News
Aug. 22, 2006 - Nick Scott Sr. is at it again.
The Erie businessman is planning to build another hotel. This one will be a Hilton Garden Inn with about 100 rooms.
Scott, the chief executive of Scott Enterprises, said his company probably will start building the hotel late this fall behind the Scott-owned Courtyard by Marriott hotel, 7792 Peach St.
The Hilton eventually will replace the 83-room Motel 6, 7575 Peach St., which Scott said his company is selling to Cullom Properties, a Nashville, Tenn., development company that wants to put a Wal-Mart or another retailer in that area that now includes a mobile-home park.
Scott declined to reveal the Motel 6 sales price or many details about the Hilton property, including the cost of construction and employment.
"We're going to have a press conference in a number of weeks after we solidify the plans," Scott said Monday.
Scott said his company will be replacing the rooms it will lose, and add about 15 more.
Scott said the new hotel, which should take about 10 months to build, will be "a positive addition" to the tourism market in the upper Peach Street area. "It's a very strong, recognized brand," he said.
John Oliver, president of the Erie Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, said he's pleased to see that Scott is replacing rooms that would be lost to the retail development.
"You hate to see a block of rooms come out of the overall hotel inventory that we have,"Oliver said.
"I'm encouraged that he's confident in the growth of the market to move forward with the additional hotel and the additional rooms that he'll be adding to that inventory," Oliver said.
Erie County's tourism economy is a $654 million annual industry.
Oliver said that besides tourists, the Hilton Garden Inn would attract corporate travelers passing through Erie or staying here for business.
Scott Enterprises owns and runs seven hotels, seven restaurants, the Ambassador Banquet & Conference Center, Splash Lagoon Indoor Water Park Resort, and Lazer Tag in Erie County.
Construction has started on Scott's latest franchise restaurant, a Steak 'n Shake, which is being built in a vacant lot next to Scott's Quaker Steak & Lube at 7158 Peach St.
Scott has said he wants to build at least four Steak 'n Shake restaurants -- a well-known nameplate in the Midwest -- over the next 18 to 24 months.
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