Ranch hotel proposed, conference center attracts no interest – Loveland Reporter-Herald
A request for proposals for the construction of a hotel and conference center as part of the expansion of the Larimer County Ranch Events Complex in East Loveland met with no interest.
The request for proposals, published on February 24 and closed for submissions on April 7, did not generate any proposals. The county is now trying to figure out why.
“We are investigating,” senior operations manager Mark Tinklenberg said. “We still want to do the project,” he said, but the county isn’t sure why potential hotel and conference venue developers haven’t shown interest.
Voters approved the expansion of The Ranch complex in 2017. Between then and 2020, the county sought input from stakeholders and worked on plans to gradually expand the popular complex which now includes the Budweiser Events Center where the Colorado Eagles play, the Larimer County Fairgrounds, and multiple buildings used during the fair and throughout the year for professional and personal events. Tax revenue from voter-approved sales and use tax began to be collected in January 2020.
Planners submitted the Planned Ranch Unit Development Plan to the City of Loveland and received City Council approval. The ranch, although owned by the county, is in the town of Loveland.
So far, the only ongoing project is the relocation of Arena Circle, the main road through the complex. It will be moved from the proximity of the buildings in the center to the outskirts of the complex.
Tinklenberg said “as of today” roadwork is underway, but not directly on Arena Circle. Roads connecting Arena Circle are under construction.
The next steps in The Ranch’s expansion include figuring out why the hotel project hasn’t garnered interest, while moving forward with other elements of the property’s five-year plan.
Tinklenberg said other elements of the plan include a 4-H youth arena, expanding some buildings, building RV campsites and expanding the maintenance facility. These are expected to be completed by the end of 2023. Bids for these will be solicited soon, he said.
The initial discussion of expanding the Ranch included the potential construction of a new Events Center that would replace the functionality of the Budweiser Events Center, and then the repurposing of the Budweiser Center. Tinklenberg said that was not part of the five-year plan.
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