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Kalaharirolls out project plans
Kalahari submits preliminary plans for resort


Date published: 1/16/2009

BY EMILY BATTLE

Kalahari Resorts sent a large set of preliminary construction plans to City Hall on Wednesday, according to Steve Smallwood, Fredericksburg's chief building official.

These aren't the final detailed plans that Kalahari will have to submit before construction. They're mid-process plans that Smallwood said his office had requested to aid in its review of what is expected to be a large and complex project.

At more than a million square feet under roof--821,000 square feet of hotel space, 200,000 square feet of waterpark space and 97,000 square feet of conference space are planned--Kalahari would be the largest building project in Fredericksburg's history.

Kalahari President Todd Nelson said last month that the problems in the credit markets were making it harder for him to get financing for the $250 million project.

He said he hoped to have his financing in place by April, and to start construction by the end of this summer.

That could delay the project's planned 2010 opening.

Nelson said he was still committed to the project, though, and city officials said the giant set of plans that arrived in City Hall Wednesday--eight 4-foot-tall rolls of them--back up that statement.

"I think it's a good sign that this is going forward," Mayor Tom Tomzak said.

Kalahari plans to put its 700-room hotel and waterpark resort on 49 acres in Celebrate Virginia.

Emily Battle: 540/374-5413
Email: ebattle@freelancestar.com