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Conference center to generate Liberal’s sales tax revenue PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 09 September 2016 10:49

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City leaders gather for the center’s groundbreaking on Aug. 25. Courtesy photo


By ROBERT PIERCE

• Leader & Times Senior Reporter


On Aug. 25, city leaders broke ground on a conference center located next to the Hampton Inn on East Pancake in Liberal.

The addition of a new conference center will allow more opportunities for groups to come in and have meetings and similar gatherings.

Pritesh Bhakta, the managing partner of VAS Hotels LLC, said this is exactly the type of benefit he would like to see from the conference center.

“I hope it generates conferences and conventions, weddings, concerts, which in turn brings in sales tax money to the City of Liberal,” he said.

Bhakta said the locale of the conference center is also great.

“It’s a good fit with the concentration of hotels within a two-block radius, a three-block radius that can support the conference center,” he said. 

The new conference center is estimated to bring in anywhere from 75 to 100 new local jobs, according to Bhakta, who said the facility should be constructed in just more than 14 months.

This means the conference center, which is being constructed by VAS Hotels based out of Oklahoma City, will be open by the end of 2017 or 2018.

The proposed conference center will be located adjacent to the current Hampton Inn on East Pancake.

In January 2015, Bhakta said there is a great need for such a project, and he showed excitement for the project’s start.

“There’s a definite need for new space in Liberal, and with the right deal and right incentives, we felt we could do it and make it happen,” he said.

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The High Plains Daily Leader and Southwest Daily Times are published Sunday through Friday and reaches homes throughout the Liberal, Kansas retail trade zone. The Leader & Times is the official newspaper of Seward County, USD No. 480, USD No. 483 and the cities of Liberal and Kismet.  The Leader & Times is a member of the Liberal Chamber of Commerce, the Kansas Press Association and the Associated Press.

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