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Chattanooga Bank Building Sold, Plans for Hotel in the Works
UPDATED: 6:40 PM EST
By Chloe Morrison from our partners at Nooga.com.

A group called AMCA LP has purchased the Chattanooga Bank Building with intentions to turn it into a hotel.

The project is part of an EB-5 program, which allows people to apply for green cards by investing in United States-based projects.

Congress started the EB-5 program in 1990 as a way to create jobs and provide access to capital in blighted areas, according to EB5GoodFortune.com.

"In this particular case, my group bought the bank building, and we have 20 people who are applying for green cards by virtue of investing in this opportunity," Robert Lubin, managing partner of AMCA LP, said.

To get the green card, investors must put in $500,000 and create 10 jobs, he also said.

AMCA LP members originally looked at the building a few years ago and wanted to turn it into a Crowne Plaza, he also said.

That never panned out, but the group liked the building, which is located on Broad and Eighth streets.

Now, the 20 EB-5 investors will contribute $10 million as part of a roughly $31 million project. Leaders expect to create 239 jobs, and construction will begin in 2015.

Those jobs will be direct, indirect and induced jobs. (Induced jobs are those created in a ripple effect through the economy as a result of the investment.)

The plans for the building include 150 rooms with two ground-level restaurants. Lubin said he hopes the hotel will open sometime in 2016.

"We are going to respect and maintain the historic character of the building," Lubin said.

And his group is looking at other options for development in Chattanooga.

Lubin and some of his partners came to visit Chattanooga for the first time recently when they were looking at the building.

"It's so beautiful," he said. "We were beyond impressed. It caught our attention right away."

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