News Columns & Blogs

Downtown badly needs new hotel

The Wichita City Council deferred until Feb. 2 the decision of whether to help WaterWalk land a $12 million, 130-room Marriott Fairfield Inn and Suites. That's no surprise, given the complexity of the proposed tax breaks and the number of questions raised. Still, the plan probably should prevail because, as was argued during Tuesday's lengthy discussion, Wichita can't continue to lose conventions and events such as the NCAA men's basketball regionals because it lacks the requisite hotel rooms. If the private sector were going to step up and build more downtown hotels without public incentives, it surely would have happened by now.