Downtown convention hotel set to ‘top out’

Jan 28, 2014
Austin American Statesman

The JW Marriott will reach a milestone Tuesday when the final steel beam is hoisted atop the building, marking the structural completion of the shell of the $300 million convention center hotel under construction on Congress Avenue downtown


The hotel is scheduled to open March 1, 2015. Construction began in 2012, and is running about three weeks ahead of schedule, Jay Spurr, the hotel’s director of sales and marketing, said during a media tour Monday. About 600 construction workers are on site now — a number that will peak at about 700 in the next month-and-a-half


With nearly 1.3 million square feet space, the hotel will be the city’s largest, and the biggest JW Marriott in the United States


It is one of several hotels either under construction or proposed for downtown, which combined would add more than 3,200 hotel rooms during the next three years. That would be about a 40 percent bump in the existing downtown room supply of about 8,000


With 1,012 guest rooms and more than 112,000 square feet of meeting, banquet and exhibition space, city and hotel officials say the JW Marriott will help Austin attract larger conventions


So far, more than 286,000 rooms rooms have been booked, with first groups due to arrive the day the hotel opens. Those bookings are about 20 percent above projections for this time, Spurr said


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