From AP - News Headlines -

Two Hotel Operators Interested in Urbana’s Shuttered Historic Lincoln Hotel

Urbana's economic development manager says two hotel operating groups are interested in the Historic Lincoln Hotel.

Tom Carrino didn't name the two companies during Monday night's Urbana City Council meeting. But he says both are interested in possibly bringing a major hotel brand to the facility --- while preserving the building's architectural integrity.

The Historic Lincoln was designed by local architect Joseph W. Royer. It opened in 1924 and closed last March --- about the same time it was acquired by Marine Bank of Springfield in a foreclosure. Its previous owners had struggled to compete with newer hotels located closer to interstate highways. Carrino says the Historic Lincoln's location in downtown Urbana may be a plus to the two hotel groups now considering the property.

"That means that it's relatively close to the University of Illinois", says Carrino. "It's close to some major employers in downtown Urbana. The fact that it was involved in a foreclosure, the bank is motivated to sell the property. That means that a good hotel group could get the property at a relatively reasonable price.

Carrino says he expects both companies will prepare competing offers to Marine Bank for the Historic Lincoln in the coming weeks. He says both companies have discussed possible tax incentives with city officials --- those incentives would be possible due to the hotel's location in a Tax Increment Finance District and a city Enterprise Zone.