May 10, 2017

The McMinnville city council gave a a green light to the proposed Atticus hotel and gave a caution light to proponents for an air show at the Mac airport.
The council, acting as the urban Renewal Agency Board, unanimously okayed a 100-thousand dollar forgiveable five year loan to an eight point three million dollar upscale 36 room hotel to be located at Ford and fourth streets. There will be a ground breaking 7am Monday morning and the 300 dollar a night hotel should open spring of 2018.

Owners say the Atticus should generate more than $200,000 a year in local lodging taxes, create 50 jobs and pump two million dollars a year into the local economy..
The hotel is expected to cater to upscale wine country tourists who want an upscale place to stay. McMinnville Planning Director Heather Richards said this type of urban renewal project would make most city urban planners do a happy dance. 99 dollars of private money will be leveraged by one dollar of government funds. That initially caused city councilor Kevin Jeffries to balk, feeling urban renewal monies should be kept for projects that desperately need the money. Atticus co-owner Erin Stephenson says the urban renewal monies are vital, citing escalating building costs. She says sheet rock costs alone have risen 150-thousand dollars in the last several months.

Meantime, councilors threw the bracks on a proposal to hold an air show in Mac, feeling city police and fire services would be overwhelmed. Police Chief Matt Scales said he had significant concerns about this. Councilors said they want to work with air show proponents over the next year to make sure any such show would not cause major issues to the city. It's expected up to 15-thousand people could attend an air show. it would be a scaled down version of the Hillsboro air show, but designed for McMinnville and not just a knock off of Hillsboro.