ShareThis Page
The Great Hotel Debate: The market is working |

The Great Hotel Debate: The market is working

| Monday, April 19, 2004 12:00 a.m

While some in this town continue to blindly push for the construction of a new hotel to “complement” the new David L. Lawrence Convention Center, others — with a better handle on the manifest dangers — are questioning the conventional “build-it-and-they-will-come” mentality.

How refreshing.

Conventional wisdom — fueled more by spin than facts — long has held that a heavily publicly subsidized hotel was needed to serve the totally publicly subsidized center. And there were many plans proposed to molest the public to build a new hotel.

But a funny thing happened on the way to trying to turn out the public’s pockets — the market responded. Hundreds of new hotel rooms have or are being added, and largely the work of the private sector. In fact, more rooms — about 800 — have been added in three years than the 500 proposed rooms the new hotel would offer.

Now, the proprietors of those new rooms and those already here are rightly questioning the wisdom of adding even more hotel rooms. A dearth easily could become a glut. And these are rooms that very well could be publicly subsidized, “government” rooms that could drive “private” rooms out of business.

The market has done much to meet the demand for new hotel rooms in Pittsburgh. If the government can temper its insatiable appetite to intervene, we’ll bet the market will offer all the rooms that are needed. What’s not needed is another government-sponsored white elephant.

Categories: News
TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.