D-Sport owner Richard Ditter has more to say about DoubleTree, the North Village

Columbia Missourian reported that Richard Ditter rented one of his property to Dave Parmley’s DoubleTree hotel to create a sample guest room. Ditter has more thoughts about this agreement, and his vision of the area.

Before developer Dave Parmley offered to rent the property, Ditter said it has been empty for a year and half after the last renter, Keith Contracting moved out. And there were lots of interest in that property.

Ditter said he was approached by numbers of entities, including restaurants, whose offers he turned down because there is a parking shortage, and he was afraid restaurant business would eat up limited parking spaces for D-Sport and KeLani Salon & Spa.

And by leasing his property to Dave Parmley, Ditter said a sales office and sample guest room would fit his property, and he was glad to help Parmley during this transition before he can move into the $20 million hotel next summer.

Ditter said he was glad to see a big eyesore being taken down, and a multi-million “aesthetically pleasing”building will be erected in his backyard.

Ditter called the old Regency an “albatross” . Ditter said the hotel has brought several of its owners to bankruptcy.  He remembered one of the owner, John Schultz putting glass on the outside, “he thought he could dress it up,” Ditter said.

(Mr Schultz seemed to comment on a Columbia Tribune story about the new hotel development, mentioning that “We were stuck with a piece of junk hotel (Regency) for many years”.)

Ditter said D-Sport has been in business in the area for 35 years. Looking back, Ditter said there were “ugly buildings” around, and he didn’t feel safe in this area, with gun fights, “god knows what would have occurred that night.”

And now those things are gone. New developments have taken place. Ditter said local developer Mark Timberlake, John Ott and others have invested lots of money, and many ugly buildings are gone.

“That’s a exciting time for downtown, and especially for this little segment of downtown.”

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