A Nashville hotel developer paid nearly $3 million to purchase 8.09 acres of land just north of Interstate 40.
The purchaser, Ray Dayal, CEO of Nashville-based Pinnacle Hospitality Partners, told The Wilson Post the transaction took place May 15 with development firm Southeast Venture as the broker.
The seller of the acreage on Pleasant Grove Road (behind Academy Sports in The Paddocks) is former Thomas Nelson CEO Sam Moore.
"The whole idea about buying this property in Mt. Juliet is the future is exorbitant in the outskirts of Nashville," Dayal said. "We think it is a good development site and we'd rather go to Mt. Juliet than, say, the Memphis area."
Dayal said Mt. Juliet's proximity to the airport was a factor.
Dayal is involved with several hotel projects. He said his latest is a Holiday Inn and Suites in Nashville.
"It is a 230-room, 15 story full service hotel across from the Omni Hotel," Dayal said of what he described is a huge project.
He said it should be completed around December 2018.
However, Dayal said this does not necessarily mean he will develop a hotel on the 8 acres of land he just purchased in Mt. Juliet.
"At this point, we don't have specific plans for the land," he said. "We are formulating ideas this year. There are so many opportunities and there are several options."
The land acquisition is in District 3 City Commissioner Art Giles' district.
"I'm very excited about this," he said. "Where it is located there's walkability to places like Academy Sports, Wal-Mart and Culvers."
Giles said even if a hotel is not the chosen project there, retail space would boost the economy as well.
"But, it would be nice to have a large hotel north of the Interstate," he said.
Mt. Juliet Mayor Ed Hagerty was reserved at this point.
"He has not submitted anything to the city yet," Hagerty said.
He noted his excitement for a project there "depends on many factors."
Mt. Juliet City Manager Kenneth Martin said he thought the transaction was, "Very exciting news for our great city and community."
However, he said he was not sure at this point about an economy boost from the future, yet to be formalized, project for the site.
"It's too early to know for sure, but promising," he said.
Dayal said, "Mt. Juliet has a bright future as a city."
"It was worth making the investment," he said.