Work on hotel slated to begin

GREENFIELD — Developers are gearing up to break ground on a new hotel in Greenfield.

Representatives from Fairfield Inn & Suites, a subsidiary of the Marriott chain of hotels, plan to begin construction this week on a 40,000-square-foot facility at William Way and Martindale Drive in Greenfield, near the Interstate 70 and State Street interchange.

The new facility, which will include 71 guest rooms and meeting space for up to 75, is slated to open in late summer to early fall of 2017, said Mohan Reddyreddy, CEO of Star Inns, which also owns the Holiday Inn Express in Greenfield.

In coming weeks, residents will begin to see crews running bulldozers and construction equipment to prepare the site, Reddyreddy said.

The two-acre site lies immediately south of the Hampton Inn and just east of the Holiday Inn Express.

In all, construction of the new facility will cost between $8 million and $8.5 million, he said.

Travis McMichael, who will serve as general manager of the new hotel, said prices for overnight stays haven’t yet been decided.

Reddyreddy purchased the two-acre plot of land that will be the future site of the hotel earlier this year for $400,000, real estate records show.

Skip Kuker, director of the Hancock Economic Development Council, said meeting space is in high demand locally.

Several of the area’s larger employers, including Elanco and Stanley Black & Decker, frequently fly clients and employees in for meetings and training, he said.

But companies often struggle to find local facilities that can accommodate a large group of people in a convenient location, he said.

While the area has plenty to offer in regard to dining and retail options, meeting space has become an sought-after amenity, Kuker said.

Greenfield Mayor Chuck Fewell said he and other city officials have been encouraging developers to consider accommodating that need.

When employers can’t find an adequate location to have large work events, they often drive to Indianapolis, he said.

“If we could fill that demand, then we’ll have more people staying and eating in the area,” Fewell said.

Though he declined to share specific figures, Reddyreddy said demand for hotel rooms at the Holiday Inn Express has grown in recent years.

Between 2013 and 2015, the number of guests staying at the Holiday Inn Express in Greenfield has increased by about 15 percent, he said.

With significant economic growth coming in on the west side of the county near Mt. Comfort, Reddyreddy said he expects that trend to continue.

Greenfield has roughly a dozen hotels and motels, the majority of which are clustered on the city’s north side just south of the I-70 exit.

Fairfield Inn & Suites has more than 700 locations around the world, including 25 in Indiana. Currently, the closest location to Greenfield is off East 21st Street in Indianapolis.

Rooms at that location start at $109, the website states.

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Daniel Morgan is a reporter at the Greenfield Daily Reporter. He can be reached at (317) 477-3228 or dmorgan@greenfieldreporter.com.