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Jul. 5, 2013

21c Museum Hotels to Convert SunTrust Building to Hotel for $48M

by Adriana Pop, Associate Editor

21c Museum Hotels of Louisville, Ky. is reconverting the former SunTrust Building in downtown Durham into a hotel, restaurant and art museum.

According to the Triangle Business Journal, the redevelopment of the historic 17-story office tower on Corcoran Street entails an investment of $48 million.

Through the partial use of a $9 million loan from the Self-Help Credit Union, 21c Museum Hotels has funded the $5.25 million acquisition of the property. The renovation project is also benefiting from $5.7 million in incentives from the Durham City Council and $2 million from the Durham County Board of Commissioners.

Originally known as the Hill Building, the tower dates back to 1937. Its historical designation derives from the name of state senator and philanthropist John Sprunt Hill, who hired Shreve, Lamb and Harmon, the architects of the Empire State Building in New York, to design the headquarters for his Home Savings and Trust Co.

Upon completion in 2015, the new hotel will feature 125 guestrooms. Stephanie Greene, a spokeswoman for 21c Museum Hotels, told the newspaper that the project is expected to create 200 construction jobs and 150 permanent jobs.

Launched in 2006 by philanthropists and art collectors Laura Lee Brown and Steve Wilson, 21c Museum Hotels is a boutique hotel chain that seeks to integrate contemporary art into everyday life. The company’s other properties are located in Louisville, Ky., Cincinnati and Bentonville, Ark.

Photo credits: army.arch via Flickr


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