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Downtown Winnipeg building could become new hotel

Big changes could be coming to a large, empty building on Broadway in Winnipeg.

The Canada Revenue Agency vacated the property at 325 Broadway in 2020.

Now, the building's owner wants to revamp the site and turn it into a new hotel.

Don Campbell, who owns the food truck next door to the building, said the CRA's departure has left a hole for business.

"If you notice, there's no other chip trucks or vendors out on Broadway, because there's no reason to park in front of the building that's been closed,” he said.

Now, a new hotel redevelopment plan could bring people back to the building and provide jobs.

"I think it's an amazing signal again to see this potential investment into Winnipeg," said Michael Juce, president of the Manitoba Hotel Association.

A report to the mayor's executive policy committee said the building's current owner, 325 Broadway Nominee Inc., wants to refurbish the property for $38.6 million.

The redevelopment plan involves a 140-room hotel, with meeting facilities, food and beverage services, and other amenities.

This would bring 50 full-time jobs to the downtown area.

"New people every day coming downtown, trying new foods. It's good, it would be positive for us," Campbell said.

With some people working from home permanently, there is a push to transform downtown office space to housing or hospitality

Data company STR said that in April Manitoba had the highest hotel occupancy rate across the country at 74.5 percent -- a 28.5 percent jump year over year.

Proponents of the project say Winnipeg could use another downtown hotel.

"It's exciting. I think you look at all the great stuff that's happening at the Convention Centre, The Forks, the Human Rights Museum, the WAG, there are a lot of great tourist attractions down there," Juce said.

There is a financial subsidy on the table for the hotel deal.

The executive policy committee is being asked to approve a tax grant of 80 per cent of annual property taxes for up to 10 years to a maximum of $1.4 million.

"It enables us to draw down and attract investors, investors that want to invest in the downtown and that's really important,” said Coun. Sherri Rollins.

The project is set to be complete in the spring of 2025.

A city report says the grant will be provided if the developer can secure a similar incentive from the province. Top Stories

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