County Sells Former Park Hotel, IT Building On E. 7th Street

Wednesday, May 27, 2020
Park Hotel in 1951
Park Hotel in 1951

The nine-story former Park Hotel and the adjacent County IT Building on E. 7th Street have been sold in the county annual property sale for just above the minimum bid price.

Great Western Land Acquisition Corporation bid $1,550,000. The minimum bid was $1.5 million.

The hotel was designed by famed Chattanooga architect R.H. Hunt, and the county has long used it as the Newell Tower - named for former Sheriff Frank Newell.

The county included its IT Building that was constructed next door in 1981, replacing an older building that had been at the site.

The Park Hotel was built in 1915.

It featured a handsome lobby with adjoining reception room as well as the Sun Room with outstanding views on the top floor. When the county bought it, a modern skin was put on, covering up the Hunt exterior design. 

The Park Hotel closed in 1963. It served as a retirement home until it was bought by the county in 1978 for $260,000. The adjoining property was acquired by the county the same year as a vacant lot.

The IT department moved out earlier, leaving only the real property office as the last holdout in the Newell Tower.

Paul Parker, real property manager, said Newell Tower is composed of an unfinished basement, six floors of finished office space, and three floors of unfinished space. Each finished floor includes its own break room, reception and men's and women's restrooms.

The IT Building is composed of a server room and office space on the first floor with the second and third floors each containing open work areas, break rooms and unisex restrooms. 

The county earlier sold the former Mayfield Building just up the hill from the Park Hotel, and it was renovated by Lamp Post Properties and turned into offices. Named for former County Council member Jack Mayfield, it was originally the Elks Building.


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