County approves plan for downtown hotel near Bijou and Spruce

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El Paso County Commissioners gave conditional approval today to a deal to sell two former county buildings at 25 and 105 N. Spruce St. to a family who wants to build a 100-room hotel on the site.

Under the deal, the Jarosz Family Partnership, which already owns the Clarion hotel about a block to the south of the county buildings at 314 N. Spruce St., will pay $2.4 million for the county property, said El Paso County spokesman Dave Rose.

But the county’s approval is contingent on whether the Jarosz partnership can secure building permits by May, because commissioners wanted to make sure land would be developed and not merely purchased by an investor.

“Commissioners were adamant that they wanted to eliminate the possibility that the land would be bought for speculative purposes and become blighted while it sat vacant and undeveloped for years,” Rose said.

The buildings housed the county’s Department of Human Services before it moved to the county’s new administrative buildings at the former Intel plant on Garden of the Gods Road.

Rose said he knows Jarosz Partnership wants to build a 100-room hotel, but is unaware of  additional details about the development or what might happen to the Clarion.

The Jarosz partnership was not immediately available for comment.

Rose said the county received several development inquiries about the land on Spruce Street but that the hotel offer was the only one that materialized.