Tuesday, December 08, 2015

City Updates VICC Hotel Market Studies

Distributed December 8, 2015

City to issue RFP for hotel site

At the December 7, 2015 Special In Camera Council meeting, staff were directed to issue a Request for Proposal (RFP) to seek interest from the development community to build the conference centre hotel at 100 Gordon Street.   In an effort to ensure those interested in developing the site have current information, Council requested staff undertake an update to the existing market studies for the hotel and Vancouver Island Conference Centre (VICC).  Council believes that in order to make an informed decision concerning a future hotel, an open, transparent and competitive RFP process is necessary.

The updated market studies at an cost of $50,000.00 are anticipated to take three months to complete and will provide Council and the development community with a better understanding of the opportunities and challenges of developing the hotel property and the adjacent VICC.

* The RFP will be issued in the spring of 2016 with a quick turn around time for responses. Council will use the evaluation criteria in the RFP to determine the most suitable proponent.

* The construction of the hotel and its opening date will be determined through the RFP process.

* Council has agreed not to consider repurposing the VICC until the market studies and RFP process are complete.

"A conference centre hotel and the success of the VICC is a priority for both this Council and the community as a whole. We want to use an open, transparent and competitive process to find a developer who can deliver this important project for Nanaimo"  -  Bill McKay Mayor City of Nanaimo



  1. Can somebody explain to me why these discussions needed to take place in camera? Was council afraid that somebody might see them actually doing something that may benefit the city? Or perhaps they were confused about where to park their unicorns.

  2. Can't say we don't keep trying. Let's hope a third attempt is successful then.

    1. Yes, a REPUTABLE market study should determine if conventioneers will come - and there will therefore be the need for a big hotel to put them up in.

      Again, it must be a reputable study to see whether the convention business is viable for a city the size of Nanaimo, in a place across the water and more expensive to get to than just a car ride from the major population centres.


    2. Time for someone smart in city admin. to start checking data - showing conventions in North America are dropping rapidly, despite new hotels being public-privately funded!

      All the hotel rooms in the world are not attracting delegates nor meetings!

  3. I thought such ventures were to be performed by the Nanaimo Economic Development Corporation which we fund to the tune of nearly $1.5 million annually. Can someone please explain when taxpayers are supposed to fund economic development work directly and when we are to do it indirectly through NEDC?


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