‘Motel Drive’ prepares for new chapter beneath Venture HomeKey

The Welcome Inn in Fresno is a person of four hotel properties on Parkway Push procured and renovated as component of Task HomeKey. Picture by Donald A. Promnitz

Resort broker Roger Tale is no stranger to the seedy heritage of “Motel Drive” — the pejorative for a portion of Parkway Drive in Central Fresno.

At just one stage, Tale owned the Welcome Inn and the Finest Spending plan Inn (now the Travel Inn), two of the 13 individual houses amongst Olive and Belmont avenues. By then, the Motel Drive/Parkway location had built up a standing for drug dealing and prostitution, and though Tale says he did every little thing he could to make certain he was working a highly regarded organization, previous behaviors were tricky to crack in the relaxation of the space.

“I didn’t cater to that some individuals did,” Tale said of the motels. “But some of individuals fellas out there consider to operate a fantastic organization and other really do not care. It is income — income business.”

Now items seem to be modifying for the location and Tale could get to engage in a portion in reforming notorious motels — not as an owner, but as a broker.

Previous month, escrow was closed on four of these locations: Parkside Inn, Motel 99, Day’s Inn and Welcome Inn. According to Story, who brokered the profits as president for Motel Resort Professionals, Inc., the buys have been created by the Fresno Housing Authority for more than $20 million, averaging concerning $45,000 and $55,000 for every room.

It all arrives as element Project HomeKey, a point out-funded energy to rehabilitate old lodges, motels and vacant apartment structures, turning them into housing for those people experiencing homelessness — especially people impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.

This also comes off the heels of a 2019 resolution led by Fresno Metropolis Councilmember Miguel Arias to clean up the extended-problematic area that rests in his district. This resolution introduced an ultimatum to the entrepreneurs — offering them possibility to clean up or promote off, with the latter staying the stop result.

According to Preston Prince, CEO and executive director for the Fresno Housing Authority, it’s been an encouraging course of action to check out — the combination of condition funding and city reforms have developed a fantastic storm to increase the Parkway spot.

“This is truly 1 of the most inspiring and aspirational efforts that I have at any time been element of and it has a genesis that is quite a few several years ago,” Prince said. “The HomeKey funding from the condition has been a at the time-in-a-life time chance, but this has been an concept that the community has been conversing about for decades.”

It is also been a position of optimism for Tale, who sees it as a second opportunity to fix some thing which is bothered him for decades.

“That’s a fantastic experience to see it changeover into excellent housing and for excellent youngsters,” Story mentioned. “

Even so, some get the job done has to be accomplished on the motels before they can start taking in company. Appropriate now, Prince suggests the Housing Authority is in the process of carrying out some necessary renovations and restorations to make guaranteed the structures are prepared. For case in point, the roof was replaced at a single assets, whilst parking lots and bogs are also being redone and produced much more obtainable and the pools are currently being done away with.

Units are also getting put together and new household furniture, beds, microwaves, fridges and flooring are being additional.

It was ample to impress Arias, who took a recent stop by to motel generate to see the development staying created firsthand. In accordance to him, it was a night time and working day big difference.

“I was completely flabbergasted by the speed and the high quality of renovations that the Housing Authority has developed,” Arias stated. “In a three-7 days interval, they replaced flooring, new sheet rock, lighting fixtures — electrical has been enhanced — and so they’ve actually turned all around these models.”

Prince expects to see the motels at a 50% occupancy by the conclude of March. Arias claims those tenants earlier dwelling at the motels who experienced to be relocated will be the 1st in line in the course of the application procedure.