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Congressman Tim Ryan

Representing the 13th District of Ohio

Rep. Tim Ryan Congratulates New Public/Private Partnership Building New Kent State University Hotel & Conference Center

August 30, 2012
Press Release


AUGUST 30, 2012
Contact: Ryan Press Office


Rep. Tim Ryan Congratulates New Public/Private Partnership Building New Kent State University Hotel & Conference Center

Applauds Job Creation, Economic Growth


KENT, OH – Today, Congressman Tim Ryan lauded the announcement of a unique public/private partnership that will enable the Kent State University (KSU) Foundation to fund an important new hotel and conference center that will create 472 local jobs and spur regional tourism growth and economic development.

“Today’s announcement is yet another example of the private and public sectors collaborating and making our community more successful,” Rep. Ryan said. “Our economic progress depends on projects like this, which bring together the strengths of business and public resources to create jobs and drive growth. This is a great step for downtown Kent, and more proof that northeast Ohio continues to be an example for communities across the nation of what we can do when we work together."

Project partners in the $15.6 million Kent State University Conference Hotel & Center in downtown Kent includes the Kent State University Foundation, The Pizzuti Companies of Columbus, City of Kent, DFWR, which is controlled by the Development Finance Authority of Summit County, and Finance Fund.  Funding for the project includes $9 million in New Markets Tax Credits (NMTC) from Finance Fund, and $6.5 million from Development Fund of the Western Reserve (DFWR).

The new 95-room hotel is part of a larger $100 million redevelopment project in downtown Kent that will offer retail, office and residential space. Construction of the hotel, slated to open in the spring 2013, will generate 430 construction jobs. When complete, the hotel and conference center will result in 42 permanent jobs in a community that has a 29 percent poverty rate.

The new hotel and conference center will serve university visitors and support area tourism overall. In addition, Kent and Akron-area employers are expected to hold corporate conferences and special events in the 5,400-square-foot, 300-seat ballroom/conference center. The hotel will also serve as a learning space for students, particularly for those enrolled in KSU’s hospitality management degree program.

Thousands of campus visitors are attracted to the area each year. KSU is now the second largest public university in Ohio with total student enrollment of more than 41,000.