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KETCHUM – Four hotel and residential projects valued at $2 billion in the central Idaho resort area of Ketchum and Sun Valley that have all been approved by local officials remain stalled due to the difficult economy, developers and city leaders say.
Developer Jack Bariteau wants to build a four-story, 73-room hotel called Hotel Ketchum but said he can’t find any banks or private investors willing to put up money.
“That’s the only thing holding it up,” Bariteau told the Idaho Mountain Express. “We spent all those years trying to get approved, and when we finally did, there was no market.”
A problematic forecast for the hospitality business has caused investors to shy away, he said.
“Historically, banks were always there for these kinds of things,” Bariteau said.
Sun Valley Co. has a massive project planned with a base village on 138 acres at Bald Mountain’s main skier entrance of River Run, adding a hotel, restaurant and shops. The plan includes family residences and three parking garages.
The other two projects are the Bald Mountain Lodge and the Warm Springs Ranch Resort, a residential project that includes a nine-hole golf course.
A sign as to why investors might be wary of putting money in new lodging is that two existing hotels are in financial trouble.
SOURCE: Associated Press
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