For many years a one-hotel town, Mansfield became a destination for six new hotel franchises before its economic boom waned a few years ago.Those hoteliers now say seven is enough -- at least until the economy strengthens.Representatives from several hotels asked the City Council on Aug. 27 to impose a moratorium on hotel construction after they learned about preliminary plans to build what would be the city's eighth, on vacant land adjacent to the Fairfield Inn & Suites at 1480 U.S. 287.They insisted the city has more hotel beds than it needs now and that more will weaken the market and make it harder for the existing hotels to ride out the rough economy."Right now we are recovering, but another hotel could bring the market down again," Kim Chong, a manager at Holiday Inn & Suites, at 201 U.S. 287, said in an interview last week. "We just need a little more time."The hoteliers said that the 437 beds in the newer six hotels have an average occupancy of 54 percent, and rates have dipped since the economic downturn hit home in 2008, fueling increased competition for fewer customers.Dwayne Renfroe, a founding member of the Mansfield Hotel and Lodging Association, said that full hotel parking lots on the weekends may create misperceptions about hotel health in the city."We just want the city to be aware of the state of the hotel market in Mansfield," Renfroe said.The council did not respond to the hotel officials' comments because the issue was not on the council's agenda.The 1.5-acre site already has the commercial zoning needed for a hotel, said City Planning Director Felix Wong.The council has authority to change the zoning, he said, but it would be unlikely to do so because the site would then be the only highway-frontage property in that area without commercial C-2 zoning.Mayor David Cook said the zoning matter wouldn't be discussed by the council unless the staff brought it forward or three council members asked to put it on the council agenda."I do think they were looking at it from a competition standpoint," he said of the hotel officials' comments. "From the city's perspective, obviously we don't want vacant hotel buildings. At the same time, those types of matters are better dictated by the market."The potential hotel site is under contract and should close "in the near term," said James Young, a commercial real estate broker who is representing the seller and potential buyer of the property.He said the hotel would have 50 to 60 rooms -- that would be fewer than any of the other hotels in town -- but he emphasized the plans are only tentative. He declined to name the hotel franchise proposing the project."These are very reputable people, and obviously they're going to build the quality that the Mansfield City Council, the staff and the citizens expect," said Young, adding he believes the current hoteliers are unreasonably concerned about competition. "You've got all the football playoffs in the fall; you've got Big League Dreams and Hawaiian Falls. I don't see where there's a problem with another hotel."Chong said the popular sports park and water park are big draws that help fill the hotels on weekends, but weekday business is minimal."The reason all these hotels are here is that people were anticipating a lot more than Big League Dreams," Chong said. "They were anticipating The Reserve and The Shops at Broad Street" -- two planned major mixed-use developments that have stalled amid economic pressures.The city's hotels are of the so-called limited-service or select-service variety, meaning basically they don't have restaurants or bars.Renfroe said the hoteliers wouldn't be opposed to a full-service hotel with convention facilities, which would bring big weekday business to town.Cook said the city's new tourism department was created in large part to recruit business conventions and workshops.The city's original hotel, Courtesy Inn & Suites, was built in about 1984 in the southwest corner of U.S. 287 and East Broad Street. It was the city's only lodging facility until 2001, when Comfort Inn & Suites opened across Broad Street from Courtesy.The other five -- Holiday Inn Express, La Quinta Inn & Suites, Best Western Hotel, Hampton Inn & Suites and Fairfield Inn & Suites, all on or right off of U.S. 287 -- arrived in a flurry, from 2007 to 2009.Renfroe said the first noticeable impact on the local hotel market occurred with the opening of the Hampton Inn in September 2008.Then when the Fairfield opened in April 2009, "It really brought saturation to the market."The Hampton started with its $129 standard rate, he said."After the Fairfield opened, those rates dropped to $109," he said, adding that the economy also played a role. "Everybody had to drop their rates to fight over the business that was here."There is some good news, Renfroe said. The average daily room rate charged by Mansfield hotels increased 7 percent to $82.28 during the first six months of this year compared with the same period last year.But the Mansfield market trails its closest competitor, the Fort Worth-Arlington market, which had about a 60 percent average occupancy, compared with Mansfield's 54 percent occupancy, according to Smith Travel Research, which tracks and analyzes data for the hotel industry.Another key measure is revenue per available room, or RevPAR, a function of the total rooms a hotel has to rent, how many it did rent and what rate it charged.Smith Travel Research calls it the real measure of a hotel's profitability. Mansfield suffered in that comparison as well -- a $44.54 average per room, $11 less than the Fort Worth-Arlington market."You're really not profitable until you're running at least 60 percent occupancy and have RevPAR in the $50s," Renfroe said.Also, the travel report said competition is increasing in the Fort Worth-Arlington market, where 16 new hotels are planned, one is under construction and another has recently had zoning approved for its site at Interstate 20 and Collins Street. The effect of that saturation level will affect Mansfield, Renfroe said."The demand is not changing," he said. "Just the supply."