BOONE — The proposed 70-room hotel and a 169-space parking deck project at 783 W. King St. is close to getting underway after over a year of development and changes from a previously planned mixed-use development called The Marketplace.

The project, which will front King, Water and Howard streets on two tracts of land equaling 1.02 acres, will be for a “new multi-story hotel with restaurant and additional public parking in parking deck,” according to the zoning application filed in 2018.

The project will cost an estimated $10 million, according to a 2018 estimate. Including the 169-space parking deck, the building will be 124,661 square feet.

Due to the slope change of the tracts of land, the building will sit 40 feet above West King Street, 46 feet above Water Street and 50 feet above Howard Street, according to the concept plans.

Out of the 169 parking spaces, 49 will be specifically for hotel use, according to Boone Planning and Inspections Director Jane Shook. The entrance and exit to the parking deck will be along Howard Street, according to the design plans.

Shook said the project, submitted in April 2018, has zoning approval, but won’t be issued a building permit until “specific items” have been addressed, mainly an encroachment agreement from the N.C. Department of Transportation.

Shook said on May 24 there is no timetable for the NCDOT encroachment agreement. Engineer Jason Gaston of Valor Engineering said he hopes it’ll be approved in the next two weeks, saying it’s a “pretty simple change.”

“It’s the last item to get our zoning permit,” Gaston said.

Following the approval, Gaston said demolition of the current office space would occur, followed by the construction of the Marketplace Hotel. There is currently no timetable for completion of the project.

“It’s pretty exciting, it’s going to be a fantastic project,” Gaston said. “We’ve seen a couple other successful downtown projects like the Horton Hotel. We’re all ready to roll.”

The project is the work of Howard Street Ventures, a group of investors including John Winkler, Scott Cook and others. The group owns the combined 1.02 acres.

Winkler declined comment on the Marketplace until the project is finally approved and construction work starts.

The architect for the project is Brent Davis of Davis and Taft Architecture of Boone.

The Marketplace project is a change from the previously planned mixed-use space with apartment and commercial space, which stalled when it was estimated to cost $30 million, Winkler previously said.

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