Construction underway on new Hilton hotel in Downtown Ocala
Work is well underway on a new Hilton Garden Inn next to Ocala's Historic Downtown Square, and Mayor Kent Guinn says it will bring new businesses to the area.
The 107-room hotel will cost more than $20 million and has experienced a few delays. Originally, the opening date was set for November 2019. That date has been pushed back to either December 2019 or January 2020.
As the city grows, Guinn says the addition of the hotel will spur new investment.
"There are tens and tens of millions of dollars of projects that are about to happen because of it," Guinn said.
Some examples of those projects include a mixed-use development, more parking and residential space and a variety of different restaurants. Another project is a microbrewery.
The work site originally had a hotel on it that was built in 1850. That hotel was torn down in 1967.