Demolition has officially begun to make way for The Highlander, the hotel to be constructed right off Radford University’s main campus.
The project is a joint effort between the University and the Radford University Foundation to bring an upscale, full-service boutique hotel to the area. It will be located at the intersection of Tyler Avenue and Calhoun Street where four existing structures are currently being demolished.
According to Vice President for Finance and Administration and Chief Financial Officer Chad A. Reed, demolition is scheduled to be completed by the end of May 2021. Construction will immediately follow.
A formal groundbreaking for the hotel is planned for June 15, 2021.
Radford University President Brian O. Hemphill said about the project, “The Highlander is a game changer for Radford University, the City of Radford, the New River Valley, and the Roanoke Valley. Without question, this hotel project is a credit to the many individuals who devoted a significant amount of expertise and time to developing a design centered on high-quality finishes and the overall guest experience. The university is proud to be a leading partner with the Radford University Foundation, in addition to Preston Hollow Capital, S.B. Ballard Construction Company, Blur Workshop and Aimbridge Hospitality, on what promises to be one of the most significant economic development projects in recent years.
“With completion in late 2022, The Highlander will serve as a sought-after destination for out-of-town guests, as well as a unique experience for local residents seeking casual or formal dining options at a one-of-a-kind event venue.”
Projected to have 125 rooms, The Highlander is designed to reflect the local region and its rich history, as well as Radford University’s tradition of hard work. In addition, it will provide amenities not available at current area hotels, such as a rooftop steakhouse and bar that will overlook campus with a backdrop of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
A highlight of the structure will be a 4,000-square-foot conference space that will accommodate 250 to 300 people, allowing the university to host large-scale events such as business expos and conferences that it could not accommodate in the past.
“This hotel is going to attract people to Radford who might have, in the past, looked at staying outside of the city. A 4-star hotel, it is going to be a destination,” said John Cox, chief executive officer of the Radford University Foundation. “We believe it is going to generate a lot of activity downtown. That will be great for our local economy.”