MOUNDSVILLE - A sign hangs near the structure of the new Sleep Inn along Walmart Drive noting the new hotel is expected to open in May.
Suzanne Park of the Moundsville Economic Development Council said the city has potential to be a destination and attraction city, offering the Marx Toy Museum, the former West Virginia Penitentiary and the Palace of Gold at New Vrindaban. As one of the parties responsible for the former penitentiary's success as a tourist destination, Park said the city needs to offer visitors a full experience.
"We're trying to build a reason to come here and do more than one thing," Park said.
Photo by Daniel Dorsch
Construction crews work on building the new Sleep Inn hotel along Walmart Drive in Moundsville. The hotel is due to open in May.
But one of the challenges to keeping people in Moundsville has been the fact that the city has few lodging accommodations to offer visitors. Mayor Eugene Saunders said he thinks the new hotel is one of the best things ever to happen for the city.
"The hotel is not even opened up yet and people are already taking reservations," Saunders said.
Meanwhile, business owners say the new hotel is likely to bring them an increase in business.
"I'm thrilled to death," Leslie Allen of Finishing Touches Quilt Shop on Jefferson Avenue said. "I've been saying for years we needed a decent place for people to stay when they come here."
She said visitors will be able to stay in Moundsville rather than have to go to Wheeling to find lodging.
"I think it will bring in business," Vickie Aston of Uniquely Yours said.
"I don't think a new business opening in town is ever a bad thing," Diane Wallace of City Cafe commented. "I just hope they can manage to keep it full."
Wallace noted the current success of the oil and gas industry in Marshall County makes Moundsville a prime place for a hotel right now but she said that could change if and when that industry comes to an end in the area.
According to Marshall County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Dave Knuth, Sleep Inn representatives said they plan to open the new hotel in the middle of May.
When construction began last year, the Moundsville City Council said they looked forward to the jobs the new hotel would bring to the community.