This morning, the Tyler City Council voted in favor of building a Hilton Gardens Inn and Suites in South Tyler. The site is located East of South Broadway and North of the Grande Boulevard extension. The Hilton will be built on the West portion of the six acre lot, away from homes. Just East of the hotel, commercial offices will go up. The hotel's developers tried to get the land earlier this year, but the city council tabled the issue. The developers then changed the hotel plan, but those changes are not enough to satisfy some residents.
Concerned residents packed the city council meeting this morning, hoping council members would vote in their favor.
"There was a petition that was presented to the plan and zoning against this," said Dennis Shepard, nearby resident. "I've seen nothing except for developers and land owners that are for it." The hotel developer and property owners presented the council with changes they feel will benefit the residents. One concern addressed is the hotel being too close to homes. The hotel has now been moved as far West as possible and commercial offices are being built between the hotel and homes. The hotel's size has also been reduced from four stories to three, and to address the privacy concern, developers will add an eight foot fence around the hotel and will preserve as many trees as possible. Despite the changes made by the hotel developers these residents say there are problems a hotel would bring that can't be avoided.
"Those concessions are going to do little if anything to increase the property taxes we will surely have too pay, and it's not going to do anything to improve our ability to sell our homes," said Gloria Duke, nearby resident. Mayor Joey Seeber says the Hilton will be the best thing for this piece of property.
"It is very close to Broadway," said Seeber. "It's too close to commercial development and if you look at that piece of property nobody is going to build a home there." Still, many residents feel the land could have been put to better use.