Energy

Motels become oil worker housing solution

2014-05-01T18:00:00Z 2014-05-01T19:52:09Z Motels become oil worker housing solutionSHARON DUNN Greeley Tribune Casper Star-Tribune Online
May 01, 2014 6:00 pm  • 

GREELEY, Colo. — Every morning, the men of the oil field file out of their hotel and motel rooms in waves around the Greeley area, warming up their trucks and emptying parking lots.

The oil and gas drilling rush caught Greeley a little flat-footed in terms of rental housing. There hadn't been an apartment complex built in recent years. Now, hundreds are slated to go up in the coming years to meet the ever-increasing demand. Area hotels and motels have become the safety net.

"I think there's probably enough to go around at this point," said Renee von Weiland operations manager for Spirit Hospitality in Fort Collins, which owns two hotels in the Greeley area and one in Loveland, all with an influx of oil and gas workers keeping the numbers strong.

While builders work on putting up apartments at a breakneck pace, area hotels and motels are filling their rooms to the brim, two workers to a room, in many cases.

Some companies have had rotating crews at area hotels and motels for the past three years. Many of the workers are here from Wyoming or Oklahoma, or North Dakota, and still others have migrated here from the West Slope, where drilling has slowed with the downturn in gas drilling there.

It has set off another mini-boom of hotels, with three more already planned around Greeley, and one in downtown Greeley. Spirit Hospitality, which owns the Hampton Inn and Suites in south central Greeley, opened its extended-stay hotel, Candlewood Suites, in west Greeley last fall, and reports 50 percent to 60 percent of its business from the oil fields.

The men of the oil field have become a huge set of big brothers for the workers at the Clarion Hotel and Conference Center in downtown Greeley.

The companies that hire the men work to ensure good behavior by making good behavior a condition of employment.

The influx of workers has pretty much turned the hotel business model upside down, having for years dealt with the typical lean times in the winters and the influx of tourism in the summers.

More will come soon. Hotel developer David Amin has planned an 85-room Homewood Suites hotel in south Greeley. Construction is expected to begin soon, with the hotel opening in spring 2015.

Though occupancies are high, there are some expectations of the oil and gas business trailing off. Brewster said companies will go only so far in giving employees housing allowances.

"What's happening is a lot of companies are saying, 'You need to move; we won't put you up anymore.' We're seeing that influx go away. Those companies won't support that forever. They're making them move or commute. There's always going to be influx of new people. At some point, it'll be almost gone. At some point, it'll be so minimal you wouldn't even count it," he said.

Copyright 2015 Casper Star-Tribune Online. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

No Comments Posted.

Untitled Document

Civil Dialogue

We provide this community forum for readers to exchange ideas and opinions on the news of the day. Passionate views, pointed criticism and critical thinking are welcome. Name-calling, crude language and personal abuse are not welcome. Moderators will monitor comments with an eye toward maintaining a high level of civility in this forum. Our comment policy explains the rules of the road for registered commenters.

If your comment was not approved, perhaps...

  1. You called someone an idiot, a racist, a dope, a moron, etc. Please, no name-calling or profanity (or veiled profanity -- #$%^&*).

  2. You rambled, failed to stay on topic or exhibited troll-like behavior intended to hijack the discussion at hand.

  3. YOU SHOUTED YOUR COMMENT IN ALL CAPS. This is hard to read and annoys readers.

  4. You have issues with a business. Have a bad meal? Feel you were overcharged at the store? New car is a lemon? Contact the business directly with your customer service concerns.

  5. You believe the newspaper's coverage is unfair. It would be better to write the editor at editors@trib.com, or call Editor Jason Adrians at 266-0545 or Content Director David Mayberry at 266-0633. This is a forum for community discussion, not for media criticism. We'd rather address your concerns directly.

  6. You included an e-mail address or phone number, pretended to be someone you aren't or offered a comment that makes no sense.

  7. You accused someone of a crime or assigned guilt or punishment to someone suspected of a crime.

  8. Your comment is in really poor taste.

Add Comment
You must Login to comment.

Click here to get an account it's free and quick

Featured Businesses

Latest Offers