by Alexa Williams
MIDLAND: The plans for Hotel Santa Rita No. 1 in downtown Midland are still in full swing. On Tuesday morning, the Midland City Council approved a company to demolish the former Midland County Courthouse where the hotel will sit.
"I think we're fixing to have a world class project in front of us," Midland Mayor, Jerry Morales, said.
Morales is excited for Hotel Santa Rita No. 1. The council is moving forward with the project that will cost up to $100 million.
"We really want to make sure that we do everything professionally. That we keep all of the property owners in the area in mind as we're doing the demolition and so it takes a lot of time," Morales said.
The asbestos removal on the former courthouse will start next month and the building will be completely demolished by November 2015.
However, the new project hasn't come without criticism from some Midlanders. But Morales said the former courthouse isn't generating any tax dollars and the hotel will bring in benefits for the city including over 300 new jobs.
"By this new project coming in, we'll see those new tax dollars that are going to be added to the downtown help all of the taxpayers by keeping their taxes down," Morales said.
The project will bring in 120 hotel rooms, parking, shops, restaurants and much more. The city is anticipating that they will break ground on Hotel Santa Rita No. 1 in the first part of 2016.