Landmark mess: Hotel construction scales back

On the morning of Tuesday, January 13, a skid steer loader fills in a hole with gravel, prepping the site for an alleged 60-day abandonment.

Two sources tell the Hook that over 100 workers have been furloughed as construction on the luxury Landmark Hotel will come to a halt as early as Thursday and the site may remain dormant for 60 days.

"The only work we're doing now," says a construction worker, who wished to remain anonymous, "is getting it to where we can just leave it for a while."

The hotel's owner Halsey Minor had not immediately returned the Hook's calls for comment at the time of this post. His attorney on the project Steve Blaine says that, in the coming days, passers-by may see an apparent decrease in the amount of production on the site, but that this is not a shut down, but rather a chance to stop and re-evaluate the progress of the project.

"As with any project," says Blaine, "the owner is making certain he's going to deliver the project in the most financially efficient and viable way."

This, says Blaine, is not cause for alarm.

"Halsey Minor is still the owner, the contractor is still the contractor, and the bank still has a loan," says Blaine, "and they all intend to bring this project to completion."

On Thursday, January 15, a skeleton crew of workers were present on the site. A few who were there to work on the heating and air system said they were only there to load equipment into a truck to be taken away for a time, while the job remains unfinished. A four-man concrete pouring crew say they are a week away from completing their portion, and plan to come back tomorrow to work toward finishing.

Indeed on the morning of Monday, January 21, the only workers at the Landmark were those laying concrete, and the only vehicle a mixing truck.

This is but the most recent of delays for the project. In November, Silverton Bank withheld its loan money on the project, though the reason was publicly disputed between owner and lender. The following month, owner Minor ousted developer Lee Danielson as the project's developer.

–Updated at 6:15pm on January 13 after the story had gone to press for the print edition. A version of this story appeared in the Thursday, January 15 issue.



Oh! Look! Charlottesville is going to start looking like the Rust Belt. Empty stores, crumbling buildings, and abandoned half finished construction sites.

Why did I move here again?

It certainly wasn't go get job that paid enough to live on.

If you dont know why you live anywhere you have problems. Make your own luck.

Old crow, this guy.
anyway this project simply reflects on the man behind it all, Halsey. what a prime example of a cut-throat business man with no regard to his fellow man. He loves him some him. to bad you can't take all that stuff with you when you expire.

Hook, might want to re-read your article there.
The hotel’s owner Halsey Minor had immediately returned the Hook’s calls for comment at the time of this post
so he DID call you back now? Doesn't sound like the Halsey i know

Gonzo, the city will never allow this hotel to sit half completed for very long. If nothing else, the city will use taxpayer's money to buy the current frame from Halsey Minor. And the city will use taxpayer's money to finish the hotel. As a matter of fact, maybe with the current economic conditions, the city should have foreseen this coming before they spent $7 million on load of bricks for the mall.

Then again it may not. Remind me never to get on the bad side of the folks down thar at the hook. They might hook me like they do Halsey.

SickOTLR, if what you say comes to pass, Halsey is far far far smarter than The Hook ever gives him credit for being....

But I think there'd be a riot on the Downtown Mall if the City used taxpayer money. Especially when the hotel overlooks Friendship Court.

Maybe those bigbrains over at the CPJC should get involved, advocating for some local economic justice, rather than supporting Hamas terrorists.

quote: "I think there’d be a riot on the Downtown Mall if the City used taxpayer money. Especially when the hotel overlooks Friendship Court."

There was no riot when the taxpayer's footed the bill for the Radisson Hotel many years ago. It's name has now changed, it's called the Omni Hotel presently.

Why don't we place a few wooden pallets inside for firewood, plop down a few hundred featherbeds and let the homeless sleep there for 60 days? By the time construction starts, the weather will break and all the bums can go back to mumbling to my 7-year-old son about money and stuff as he romps with me on the Corner. We probably could get some lovely 800-thread-count sheets from Yves de Lorme on the Mall for the vagrants. Oh, and I am sure Comrade Norris et. al. would gladly pay for some Hamilton's entrees for the occupants until Halsey fixes this minor glitch.

Oh, my...I am sorry Charlottesville. I forgot to take my politically-correct supplements with my organic soy milk this morning. Excuse the cold tone!

The Omni bonding scandal did make the city Dems look bad, and would have been illegal a few days later. The state that law allowed it had already been repealed, effective at the end of the year. A lawsuit went to Va. Supreme Court.

I'd like to see an historic table of Dem/Repub split on city council. Maybe it did go rightward after that. But if you expect to ride the Omni scandal to victory now, 20 years later, keep waiting.

More practically, such a bailout would probably require state approval, right? Assuming you're seriously worried.

Here is how it will go down... These folks will approach the city and say that in order for them to continue they will need tax abatment for 20 years or so. They will show some smoke and mirrors about how much income the mall will generate due to their project and say that it is "fair" The folks at the city will grumble and they will work the numbers to probably 15 years abatment and about 10 years the property will be sold, but as part of a "stock" holding, thus denying the city transfer taxes. (a well worn loophole in the industry).

If the city had any balls , when approached with this they would demand completion or condemn the building as blight, sieze it and resell it to someone who will finish it right.

Unless of coursr Mr. Minor agrees to plant some trees on the roof, then the city will probably float a bond for him at 2%.