Austin-based marketing firm to help with lakefront development - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Austin-based marketing firm to help with lakefront development

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - Austin-based marketing firm CBRE won the bid to help develop the Lake Charles lakefront.

"They recommend a marketing analysis and we think it's a prudent thing to do. What is the market for the lakefront? What will it support," explained John Cardone, Lake Charles City Administrator.

CBRE will determine if the lakefront can support a hotel, and if so - what size is feasible. The analysis will also look at the demand for retail, restaurants, and residential. CBRE will charge the city $6,000 per month. According to City Council President Stuart Weatherford it's one of the best real estate marketing firms in the country.

"They're not going to sit on their hands. They're going to get it done, but they're not going to get it done quickly for the sake of getting it done quickly. They will have a reasonable timetable to provide a good product back to us," said Weatherford.

City officials believe a marketing analysis should take about 90 days. Based on the information, the council will then decide if the city should move forward with a full marketing and development plan with CBRE.

"At this point, let's find out what the market is before we decide if we want to start letting them market for us. There's other phases they proposed that they submitted to us. I think it is basically an 18-month window of 7 phases. The marketing analysis is phases 1 through 3. We want to stop at the marketing analysis and look at it. We'll then see what needs and how large the needs are for the lakefront," said Cardone.

Meanwhile, the city said since going with a smaller parcels approach on the old Harrah's property, several developers have shown interest. They've asked them to write a letter of intent. In the event those developments follow through, there won't be any service charge should the city employ CBRE to market the lakefront.

Copyright 2014 KPLC. All rights reserved.
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