UC Hotel Project Talks ‘Moving Forward’: By RICHARD BRENNEMAN

Friday October 29, 2004

Plans for a major UC Berkeley-sponsored hotel and convention center at the northeast corner of Shattuck Avenue and Center Street are moving forward, says Kevin Hufferd, UC Capital Projects senior planner. 

“I feel very good about the progress we’re making,” Hufferd said. “We have a real shot at something quite exciting.” 

The university is negotiating with Carpenter & Co., a leading hotelier based in Massachusetts. 

“We struggled at the beginning back in the spring to make sure we and the developer were on the same page,” Hufferd said, “but we’ve been moving along very well.” 

UC and Carpenter & Co. are currently attempting to hammer out details that will make for an economically feasible project, said Hufferd. 

“We’re trying to determine issues like height, bulk, scale and the number of rooms. After that we’ll need to embark on additional discussions with the community about design issues,” Hufferd said. 

The UC official said negotiations will include concerns raised by the Berkeley Planning Commission’s UC Hotel Task Force, which developed a list of recommendations for the project during a series of meetings that ended last April 27. 

“There’s a lot to be worked out,” Hufferd acknowledged. 

The university plans to develop a complex of facilities on the two blocks bounded by Shattuck Avenue on the west and Oxford Street on the east between University Avenue and Center Street. 

The site is supposed to include a complex of museums and parking facilities as well as the hotel and conference center.›