UPDATE: City Council approves bonds for downtown garage

UPDATE: City Council approved the bond proposal in a unanimous 9-0 vote.  We’ll have much more on News 3 On Your Side at 6pm.

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The Savannah City Council on Thursday will consider whether to issue up to $33 million in bonds to finance the building of a parking garage in relation to the Richard Kessler development on the west end of River Street.

City Staff call the project  “transformative”  in the sense that it will include a 419 room hotel, up to 20,000 square feet of retail along with more than a dozen restaurants.  In addition, Kessler told us there will be meeting spaces.

Today City Manager Stephanie Cutter issued a memorandum on the concept saying “Kessler would personally guarantee the bond payments for the first four years of the project.”  The document says after that a management company (of Kessler) which would be managing the garage would pay for all operating expenses and future bond payments. If the council approves the deal, Cutter’s document says the bonds could be issued as early as July of this year.

The memorandum also says that the project (when completed) would provide up to 700 jobs and that up to half of the parking spaces in the garage (about 250) would be for public use.

See the news report video above to learn more about the project.

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