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Developer has big plans for Lorain's historic Broadway building, hotel and more in the works

Posted at 5:35 PM, Dec 20, 2017
and last updated 2017-12-20 17:46:17-05

Time has stood still inside Lorain’s Historic Broadway Building which was built in 1925.

The old hotel has deteriorated since becoming vacant 15 years ago. Room key cards still sit on the lobby counter.

Despite being run down, the building has attracted the eye of developer Ariel Ventures LLC, thanks to the building's scenic views of Lake Erie.

Lorain Port Authority Director Tom Brown said the building was donated to the Port Authority by the previous owner, the Spitzer Auto Group.

Ariel Ventures plans to put several millions of dollars of renovations into the building.

The plans include a hotel, a restaurant and two event centers, which both offer views of Lake Erie.

"I mean definitely I like that it has a lake view, if it didn't have a lake view it would have been harder to do. I think that there's value, because we do run event centers and I feel the fourth floor with a lake view could be an option for an event center," said Radhika Reddy with Ariel Ventures.

"It's just a very unique building and the views are spectacular and that's going to be a wonderful proposal for Broadway. We bring four to six thousand people down for a concert and everybody says boy I wish I had a hotel room. People come in for Christmas and say my family doesn't have any place to stay. We're the tenth largest city in the state of Ohio and there's not one hotel room," said Brown.

Brown believes the project could attract other businesses to fill some of the vacant buildings nearby.

“The developer said what a beautiful downtown, but why is it empty.

I think we've all talked about potential for so long and they saw and shared in the vision of what Lorain can be and what Lorain should be," Brown said.

Reddy said if all goes as planned, construction could start in July.