Carl Small Town Center featured in Tupelo’s Daily Journal

January 30th, 2015 Comments Off on Carl Small Town Center featured in Tupelo’s Daily Journal

Corinth tourism wants downtown boutique hotel

By Lena Mitchell

Daily Journal Corinth Bureau

CORINTH – Corinth tourism officials want to spark interest in building a boutique hotel downtown, and the Mississippi State University Carl Small Town Center is doing the groundwork.

Corinth Area Convention and Visitors Bureau Executive Director Christy Burns and tourism council president Russell Smith met this week with MSU School of Architecture student Hannah Waycaster and Carl Small Town Center Director John Poros to review the feasibility study for the project.

“It’s been a problem for us for a long time that Corinth doesn’t have enough hotel rooms,” Smith said.

At times like the mid-March weekend when Corinth hosts a popular Bible conference at a local church and a state gymnastics meet at the Crossroads Arena, Corinth hotels are fully booked and some people who plan to attend must stay in hotels in nearby cities, he said.

The proposal Waycaster and Poros presented was developed with the help of a professor in the university’s real estate department.

It outlines a 49-room hotel to be built on one of several available properties in downtown Corinth that the team scouted. Those properties range in size from a few thousand square feet, requiring the hotel to be built vertically with several stories, to as large as more than 35,000 square feet.

“I stayed at the Alluvian Hotel in Greenwood for the Mississippi-Alabama Rural Tourism Conference, and I think something like that could work in Corinth,” Burns said.

The Alluvian is described as “a cosmopolitan boutique hotel in the heart of the Mississippi Delta,” and is situated across the street from the Viking Cooking School, which attracts visitors worldwide.

“Our hotels seem to be booked Mondays through Wednesdays,” Burns said, “but we’re trying to help sell weekends. For group tours a boutique hotel might be a target for that, or something like a girls’ weekend.”

Waycaster, under Poros’ direction, has developed several community improvement projects in Corinth, including a recently completed pocket park at the corner of Wick and Franklin streets, and a proposal for renovations at Crossroads Regional Park. A $40,000 grant from the Pierce Foundation – $10,000 a year for four years – is being used to support these projects.

Waycaster’s next step is to create a schematic design for the hotel, using a 20,000-square-foot lot to create the footprint for the design. She expects to have a design to present by early summer.

“This work will show prospective builders the feasibility of the project, but they would need to use their own people to decide on going forward with it,” Poros said.

lena.mitchell@journalinc.com

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