New Developments For Downtown Lake Charles

September 6, 2006
Reported by Vince Atkinson

Over the past few years we have all heard a lot about revitalizing the Downtown Lake Charles area. Some of the ideas have been successful, while others have fallen by the wayside. As of Wednesday night, there is a new plan in the works. That plan centers around the old Sears building in Downtown Lake Charles.

This is not the first time the now vacant Sears building has made it into the news. You may remember that the city of Lake Charles purchased the massive structure more than a year ago. Now it is being put back on the market and for a very surprising project.

Downtown Lake Charles is slowly beginning to be transformed back into what it once was. Abandoned buildings are being sold and then fixed up nearly on every corner, except for the old Sears building. The vacant building is currently owned by the city and has become an eye sore that takes up nearly an entire city block of prime real-estate.

Wednesday night the Lake Charles City Council adopted a ordinance authorizing the mayor to sell the building. Two different parties placed offers on the table, both for about $800,000. In the end, the Lake Charles Hotel Group, LLC. won the vote of the council. The company has some big plans for a building that has sat vacant for years.

The Lake Charles Hotel Group plans to finish out the first floor of the building for retail and restaurant facilities. The upper floors of the building will be converted into a hotel with the potential for office, condominiums, or apartment units. If everything goes well with the new plans for the old Sears building, developers hope to build a structure that fits in better with other historic landmarks in the area. The sale of the Sears building by the city is not a done deal just yet. The company that is attempting to purchase the structure is still completing a feasibility study.