SCHROON LAKE - Construction of a new hotel in Schroon Lake could begin this year.
Talks are under way to bring a national chain to Route 9, south of the hamlet.
"This has been in the works since 2006," said Roger Friedman, one of the investors. "It's no secret we've been discussing a hotel. It's needed badly in our community."
Joining Friedman in the investment group, Schroon Revitalization Group, LLC- Schroon Lake Hospitality, are his brother, Joel, and David and Jane Kaufman. The Kaufmans live in Burlington, Vt., but are summer residents of Schroon.
Plans call for approximately 81 rooms and suites, meeting rooms, an indoor pool and fitness center. It's uncertain if there will be a restaurant or other amenities.
Joel Friedman stressed plans won't be finalized for the $8 million project until a franchise agreement is reached with a national chain.
"We are continuing to study the flags (chains) out there," he said. "We're looking for a mid-scale property appealing to both the highway traveler and the leisure-destination traveler.
"We're still trying to figure out the bits and pieces that are the best fit for the community," he added. "We don't have a final plan yet."
Roger Friedman noted several studies in the past 30 years have indicated the need for hotel rooms in Schroon. He pointed to a 1977 study that led to a failed attempt to bring a hotel-conference center to the former Camp Idlewood property. Another study, completed last year, also suggested the need for more lodging.
"Schroon Lake has no place to house people," Roger Friedman said. "The last count showed there were 493 rooms in the town; 200 that are owned by Word of Life that are only quasi-public. Of the 493 rooms on that list, 92 are no longer operating. In the last five years we've lost 90 rooms."