The red-brick trapezoid former bank building that for years has stood out like a sore thumb on North Main Street near the Historic Stockyards will be razed soon to make room for a six-story Springhill Suites by Marriott.
Hunter Goodwin, president and chief operating officer of Oldham Goodwin Group, said Friday that an asbestos abatement is being completed before the building can be torn down. Once that’s all done, construction on the hotel will start right away, likely in a little more than three months, he said.
Construction will take 14 to 16 months, with the 170-room hotel open to guests in the fourth quarter of 2018, Goodwin said.
Bryan-based Oldham Goodwin Group, a commercial real estate brokerage, development and management firm, bought the property at the northwest corner of North Main and 23rd streets in October 2015.
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Until a couple of years ago, the building housed a Wells Fargo Bank branch and other offices. It became a reference point for visitors to the Stockyards, knowing that when they saw it they were close.
More important, it also served as the impetus for the adoption of a form-based code for the Stockyards area, as a way to provide protection from an odd-shaped building. A form-based code is a type of zoning that places emphasis on building form, rather than land uses.
People were annoyed with it. It just didn’t fit. We welcome the new hotel.
Keith Powell, Stockyards Business Association president
Keith Powell, president of the Stockyards Business Association, said many business owners and residents on the north side won’t be disappointed to see it come down.
It was affectionately — or not — called “the wedge,” Powell said. “People were annoyed with it. It just didn’t fit. We welcome the new hotel.”
Oldham Goodwin has managed the Hyatt Place hotel owned by the Hickman family on East Exchange Avenue in the heart of the Stockyards since 2005. That experience, Goodwin said, has allowed the company to understand the culture and heritage of the Stockyards and to incorporate that in the design of the new hotel.
The hotel will have modern comforts and amenities, but it also takes in what a “real cowboy” would expect if they were at their own ranch, Goodwin said.
Marriott has been involved at every step in the design process because the hotel is 100 percent custom, he said.
“It’s been exhaustive,” Goodwin said of the design process. “I believe it’s imperative that we deliver a product that looks and feels like the Stockyards. We’ve had to do a lot of selling of what that ‘real cowboy’ means.”
The developers have partnered with Fort Worth celebrity chef Tim Love for a rooftop bar and the hotel will feature a conference room, pool and a gigabyte of fiber to each guest room, he said.
Goodwin declined to say the cost of the hotel, but some records place construction costs at $24.5 million.
The building does fall in the boundaries of the Stockyards Design District approved earlier this year, which places guidelines and standards on new construction. It does not fall in the Historic District overlay, which would have placed even greater restrictions.
The building was sold by Keith Kidwell, Jerry Lofton and Alvin Lusky, according to deed records. It was built in 1969 for North Fort Worth Bank. It later became Central Bank & Trust, which was acquired by Norwest Corp. in 1992. Norwest is a Wells Fargo predecessor.
In 2014, Wells Fargo moved from the building to a new building a few blocks north on Main Street, near Billy Bob’s Texas.