Emmit Smith Plans Harlem Hotel
Emmitt Smith is the marquee name among a group of investors aiming to build a hotel at the corner of Lenox Ave and 125th Street in Harlem. For a portion of the $80 million cost to finance the project they went to the New York City Capital Resource Corporation, run by Mayor Bloomberg. The NYCCRC had $120 million provided by the federal government in order to seed economic development in certain neighborhoods.
Emmitt's group requested $19.5 million, which was all that remains of the original $120 million. This week they were told they have been provisionally awarded the sum pending a full board vote, but with one serious condition: they must begin construction by the end of this year.
There have been many attempts and many promises made when it comes to revitalizing Harlem, and most have remained nothing more than attempts and promises. Assuming the investment group can source the remaining funds, it is said that the hotel will be a Hyatt, joined by retail and cultural establishments such as Whole Foods and a YMCA.