A new delay for convention center hotel - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Harmony Hospitality asking for more time to build convention center hotel

Future site of convention center hotel Future site of convention center hotel

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - Harmony Hospitality is asking to extend its agreement with the city to build the convention center hotel built.

Harmony representatives will meet Monday morning with city leaders to talk about the extension.

Mayor Bill Saffo explained that Harmony needs more time to get its funding in place.

He said the hotel group has investors ready to provide funds to the project; however, there is a hold up at the federal level with getting paperwork approved to get money for the hotel through a program called EB5.

The federal program gives permanent residency to people who invested at least a million dollars (or at least $500,000 in a designated zone) to a new commercial project in the US.

The program allows those foreign investors to bypass the eight year waiting list for a green card and bring their families to America.

Saffo said numerous private equity firms and developers are utilizing the program to raise capital, which is causing a backlog with federal approval for the investors.

For more information about the program, read this story on another project in Wilmington utilizing EB5.

Harmony Hospitality plans to build a $33.6 million, 186-room Embassy Suites. According to the City of Wilmington, the proposed 163,000 square foot hotel would include a second story full service restaurant and 6,000 square feet of meeting space.

The all-suite hotel would be about the same height as the nearby Hilton Hotel.

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