Allen Approves $85 Million Hotel and Convention Center

The Convention Center at Watters Creek
The Convention Center at Watters Creek

TCH Altera LLC has gotten the green light to move forward with construction of The Convention Center at Watters Creek. The $85 million development will bring 290 hotel rooms, 64,500 square feet of convention space, and a 1,000-car parking garage to Allen. It will sit on seven acres at Bethany Drive and North Central Expressway, next to the city’s Watters Creek mixed-use project.

When it opens in early 2017, it will be the largest convention center of the North Dallas suburbs, according to a study by HVS.

“The sheer size of the convention space opens the door for significant conferences and propels Allen to a whole new level as a destination city for business and tourism,” said Allen Mayor Stephen Terrell.

Terrell said the HVS study projects venue revenue from the convention center will reach $3.6 million annually by its fourth full year of operation.

As part of the deal, the city, Allen Economic Development Corp., and Allen Community Development Corp. will jointly contribute $12.3 million in capital investment and has agreed to provide additional support over time. The AEDC also will contribute the land, which it has owned since the 1990s.

Allen has been on a growth tear in recent months. It secured a headquarters from KONE Elevators and a new 860,000-square-foot office park that’s being development by Peloton Commercial Real Estate.

Dan Bowman, executive director of the AEDC, said Allen is evolving into a Class A office market. “This convention center and the adjacent Watters Creek mixed-use destination provide amenities that are critical for these corporate tenants,” he said.

The Convention Center at Watters Creek
The Convention Center at Watters Creek

According to Bowman, developer TCH Altera brings experience with a range of notable hotels, including the Mandarin Oriental in Las Vegas, The Knickerbocker in Manhattan’s Time Square, and The Fairmont Acapulco Princess in Mexico.

5G Studio Collaborative, which designed the Omni Dallas Convention Center Hotel, has been selected for architectural design. Plano-based Aimbridge Hospitality has been chosen to manage the property. The company currently manages more than 270 hotels in 38 states and the Caribbean and is the second-largest independent hotel management firm in the country.

TCH Altera, which has secured construction financing, expects to break ground by the end of the summer. A privately held consortium specializing in the luxury hospitality sector, it has developed more than 100 projects valued at more than $3 billion over the past three decades.

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