Hotelier hopes for fall start

SUNSHINE INN Executive Suites developer Kim Tran says hotel tours gave him ideas for the hotel he is going to build here in Terrace.

SUNSHINE INN Executive Suites developer Kim Tran recently returned from Florida where he says hotel tours gave him ideas for the hotel he is going to build here in Terrace.

“I went to look at new hotels to see what they have and I take these ideas into Terrace,” said Tran.

“Now lighting has central control with a very small touch screen for everything,” he continued, highlighting the fact that he wants his Sunshine Inn in Terrace to have up-to-date design features.

The developer’s general idea for the development hasn’t changed—it will be a 90-100 room hotel with 13 or 14 condominiums on the top floor and a restaurant on back-to-back lots located at 4812 Hwy 16 beside Kalum Tire and 4813 Lazelle Ave. beside the Terrace Bowling Alley.

Tran said the engineering of hotels hasn’t changed much in the last 50 years but that trips like this are necessary to keep interior design features from falling behind quickly changing trends.

Like the other developments slated for Terrace, there is a lot of technical and bureaucratic legwork Tran still needs to have done.

This means waiting for engineering reports to come back before he proceeds to apply for a building permit.

And the provincial highways ministry still needs to give the green light to the proposed project because the new building will have an effect on traffic flow on Hwy16.

Engineers are currently finishing a geo-technical study on the site.

After the report is prepared, Tran will apply for a building permit and hopes to begin constructing the foundation this fall, although in the case that the permitting takes longer, then construction would begin in March 2014, Tran said.

Tran said a construction price tag anywhere from $12 million to $16 million is possible.

The condominium sales will appeal to snowbirds who live part of the year down south, said Tran, and the plan was also heralded by city council members at a previous meeting as part of the answer to a shortage in smaller housing units in Terrace.

Tran was successful in getting a regulation change to add a storey for the condo units.

The first Sunshine Inn development in Burns Lake opened almost 14 years ago, Smithers followed more than four years ago and the one in Houston is nearing its one year anniversary. At 58 rooms, Smithers is currently the largest Sunshine Inn development so far, soon to be surpassed by the one in Terrace.

Tran owns a construction company, and will be doing the general contracting himself once he gets the building permit. In the meantime, Tran will keep adding detail to the plan, and says he has also been looking at Canadian hotels for ideas as well.