Sunday, January 3, 2010

Pulver breaks ground on Coatesville hotel

After more than five years, Oliver Tyrone Pulver Corp. has broken ground in Coatesville.

The Conshohocken developer is moving forward with a $36 million Courtyard by Marriott and an 80,000-square-foot office building.

For Don Pulver, president of Oliver Tyrone Pulver, Coatesville holds great promise. “It’s Conshohocken 20 years ago and the Great Valley of 30 years ago,” Pulver said, adding: “This is our little piece of Southern California.”

Pulver should know. While not a SoCal guy, he’s the developer who made Conshohocken a thriving office submarket that has helped lead to the eventual revitalization of the former steel town. The hotel and office development will go on 22 acres at Coatesville’s main intersection of routes 30 and 82. The hotel will have 125 rooms and while infrastructure work is under way now, actual construction of the building will begin by the middle of next year and create nearly 500 construction jobs.

A Marriott is key to the overall development. “They have a way of creating demand,” he said. “We learned how important that brand is to getting people to come to a place and to the office buildings.”

The company succeeded in constructing two Marriott in Conshohocken.

Don Pulver is still waiting for approval of his revised land development plan before constructing the office building, which won’t be constructed on spec. Pulver is currently is scouring the market for tenants. Plenty of prospects are already in the market and Pulver believes he can draw them to his project. He hopes to eventually construct 600,000 square feet of office space in several buildings though the exact number hasn’t been determined.

Pulver has worked with state and local government officials since 2004 on the Coatesville project, securing state funds, zoning and other approvals as well as private investment needed to kick start it. The state is ponying up $10.5 million of the $36 million price tag, including a $5.75 million Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program grant, a $1.25 million grant from the Infrastructure Development Program, and a $3.5 million loan from the Business in Our Sites program. When construction is complete, the new hotel and office will be a much needed boost for the city. It will employ about 330 people, which is more than 10 percent of Coatesville’s current job base.

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