Project to bring jobs, tax revenue and tourism dollars.
By Sylvia Allen
LAWRENCEVILLE – May 4, 2023 was a day of celebration for the citizens of Brunswick County. A ground-breaking ceremony for HOTEL ELLE to be located at 10233 Governor Harrison Parkway beside the Brunswick Square Shopping Center was held drawing a crowd of approximately 100 people. Having a hotel to locate in Brunswick County has been a dream for many years and now it will be a reality. The Brunswick County Board of Supervisors hosted a reception at the Brunswick County Conference Center following the ceremony providing an opportunity for fellowship.
Alfreda Jarrett Reynolds, Director of Economic Development, offered a warm welcome.
”It is my distinct honor to welcome each of you here today for the ground-breaking ceremony for HOTEL ELLE.
“This project is the manifestation of the Brunswick County Board of Supervisors’ Vision 2035. It details a plan to position Brunswick County to be a premier ‘Location of Choice’ in Southside Virginia. HOTEL ELLE will be a catalyst in this effort to revitalize our community and pave the way for more exciting economic development opportunities of which our hotel development team is excited to share with each of you today. We are grateful for this partnership as we will continue to work together to develop this property in such a way that it will serve as a beacon of hope as we transform the economic landscape of this area. Brunswick County is The Location of Choice - The Gold Standard in business, leisure and education.
“We are taught that in everything we are to give thanks so at this time we invite Dr. Ronald Thornhill to give us the invocation,” Reynolds stated.
Dr. Thornhill thanked God for the many blessings we all enjoy and further stated that change is necessary. He prayed that projects like this will be a blessing now and for the future.
Supervisor Dr. Alfonzo Seward – Chair, Brunswick County Board of Supervisors, said because both of his parents are preachers he felt compelled to ask everyone to say “Amen” and they did.
On a more serious note, Dr. Seward said that without a vision, referencing the Bible, people shall perish. He thanked Reynolds and county administration for their work on this project and he also thanked the Industrial Development Authority and the Town of Lawrenceville calling attention to the collaborative effort.
County Administrator Leslie Weddington said it was a wonderful day for Brunswick County and expressed excitement about a hotel locating here. She said people have been working on this project for a long time and it is great to see the plans come to fruition. Weddington thanked the Town of Lawrenceville for their support, saying Brunswick County is the location of choice.
Reynolds stated, “This project will being jobs, tax revenue, and tourism dollars along with providing enrichment to the lives of our citizens. For many years, our county has been striving to acquire a hotel. With our many festivals, our proximity to Lake Gaston, and our convenient location directly on U.S. 58, a hotel is necessary and will be a positive addition to our community. This project will help bring the Brunswick County Board of Supervisors Vision 2035 of making Brunswick County a Premier Location for Economic Growth and Development to fruition. Brunswick County is the Location of Choice, the GOLD Standard for business, leisure and education. We truly believe that HOTEL ELLE is only the beginning of great things to come! We are excited about this project and the potential jobs that will come from this project, with a proposed salary range from $15.00 to $30.00 per hour. The proposed total jobs for this overall development from construction to operation is 167 jobs,” Reynolds stated.
Reynolds provided more information about the project: 110 construction jobs, 18 hotel jobs, 14 restaurant jobs, and 25 miscellaneous jobs. Between $164,093.00 and $251,693.00 of tax revenue is expected. Approximately $42,000.00 is expected in utility revenue to the Town of Lawrenceville.
Carla Bailey, Developer Project Whitehouse, LLC, thanked Reynolds and the Board of Supervisors for their support and for the warm welcome. She said the hotel would have 110 rooms calling it “world class” featuring a rooftop restaurant and meeting space. She said the peacock is the mascot for HOTEL ELLE with its beautiful colors. Bailey promised to deliver.
Kevin Blount, Developer Project Whitehouse, LLC, said he was excited to be a part of the project and further credited Reynolds for her work on the project. He said they wanted to be part of the community.
Chris Suber, Developer Project Whitehouse, LLC also thanked Reynolds for her work on the project and Wendell Green, the Architect. He said HOTEL ELLE wanted to support the community working with the high school and Southside Virginia Community College and other organizations.
Reynolds invited everyone to the reception to enjoy food and fellowship and see renderings of the proposed hotel. She also said the James Solomon Russell – Saint Paul’s College Museum and Archives would be open.
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