City of Fort Dodge Looks To Redevelop Vacant Downtown Hotel

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Warden Plaza Hotel in downtown Fort Dodge. (Roger Riley WHO-HD)

Warden Plaza Hotel in downtown Fort Dodge. (Roger Riley WHO-HD)

FORT DODGE, Iowa- The City of Fort Dodge is looking to develop a vacant hotel in downtown, which once provided luxury housing, and shopping.
Over the past number of years, Warden Plaza, has stood vacant.

During the past few months several developers have come forward showing interest in developing the old building into housing.

“We definitely have a need for market rate multi family housing,” said City Manager David Fierke. “We’ve done housing studies that indicate that is probably our key need to develop.

A new bio-tech plant northwest of town is driving the need for more workers to move here.

The City has an agreement with a Kansas City developer looking at brining the old hotel back to life.

“About 8 to 10 years ago started looking at the building for opportunities to redevelop and haven’t had a lot of success,” said Fort Dodge Mayor Matt Bemrich. “Here in the last year, 2016 we had a couple different developers come forward with the interest in putting the project together.”

The project will not be cheap, the housing portion could cost $30 million to renovate, and a possible rec center could add $15-25 million. There is no estimate yet on what commercial development might cost.

“We would like to bring this back to Ft. Dodge,” said Bemrich. “I Believe it to be a catalyst project which would put people back in the downtown, living, and working, and playing