SAN BENITO – Marriott International Inc. has told city officials they will not build in San Benito.

The $19 million hotel and conference center was to be a big project for the area and sparked much enthusiasm among city officials and the community.

The announcement comes a year after the Economic Development Corporation first announced the project located at 2550 W. Expressway 77/83 on a three acre site.

At that time officials said it would break ground in six months and the current structure demolished, but it never did.

The proposed four-story Fairfield Inn and Suites by Marriott would have had between 90 to 110 rooms and a resort-style swimming pool.

Despite this upset, city officials remain confident.

“While we are disappointed, we are not giving up in promoting that property for development,” said San Benito Mayor Celeste Sanchez. “We believe that is prime property and area for development and the feasibility study conducted supports our vision.”

For more on the story read Tuesday’s Valley Morning Star.