A three-acre patch of land on the east side of the Sandy Creek addition changed hands Monday, marking the next step in development of a Hampton Inn, the most recent of four hotels either in business or under construction on K-61 by the Maple Street extension.

It is the latest example of the ongoing economic growth spurt in Pratt.

The city received $250,000 for the three-acre piece of land that is on the south side of Maple Street and across the street from the First Southern Baptist Church.

Although the specifics on the Hampton Inn have not been released, the hotel will probably have 60-some rooms and be in the $4 million to $6 million range, said Pratt City Manager Dave Howard.

The city has been concentrating on the land purchase and has not had a lot of discussion about specifics of the hotel, Howard said.

Also under consideration in the Pratt area is a Freddy's Frozen Custard and Steak Burgers restaurant. A representative has met with Howard and indicated they are looking at Pratt as a possible location and the area next to the Hampton Inn is one of several locations under consideration.

Currently under construction on the east side of K-61 is a Best Western Plus three-story hotel south of the Holiday Inn Express and Comfort Suites.

All this hotel construction is evidence these companies feel confident about future growth in Pratt to a point they are willing to invest millions of dollars in structures.

The eventual four-lane bypass will go across K-61 just a little ways north of Pratt Community College. All the hotel owners have talked about the bypass and it was taken into consideration before building the hotels.

The Hampton Inn is the first construction project scheduled for the Sandy Creek addition. Phase one has been completed and is ready for the first home construction to take place. The city is in the final phase of determining the cost per lot but if someone wants to build now, they should contact the city and they will work with the builder on lot price.

The city plans on offering special rates over a 10-year period to recover the cost of putting in streets and utilities.

Pratt has a number of projects, both public and private, that are evidence of the growth that is taking place in Pratt and Pratt County. The construction of the new high school and Blythe Family Fitness has increased Pratt's appeal.

The major addition to the hospital, the Vernon Filley Art Museum, the new Arrowhead West facility in the Prairie Parkway Industrial Park are also signs of growth in the community as is the development of the area north of Walmart for Maurices, Hibbett Sports, the energy industry and the City Park next to the Barron Theatre.

The oil and gas industry in Pratt County, along with ethanol and wind, are also evidence that this area is in an energy active area in south central Kansas and a good place for growth.

"Pratt is a good place to invest in right now," Howard said.

Pratt continues to promote itself with hunting and fishing, Green Sports Complex tournaments and games, the Miss Kansas Pageant, the Pratt Community College Rodeo and Lemon Park Lights. Howard said he would like to see an event in town at least 45 of the 52 weekends.