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Plan emerges to turn Kalispell hotel into studio apartments

by BRET ANNE SERBIN
Daily Inter Lake | January 2, 2022 12:00 AM

A proposal to convert the Fairbridge Inn & Suites and Outlaw Convention Center, formerly known as The Outlaw Inn, into roughly 250 studio apartments is the focus of a public hearing Jan. 11 before the Kalispell Planning Board.

Senior Planner PJ Sorensen said the Planning Department is reviewing an application for a conditional-use permit to remodel the expansive building off U.S. 93 on the city’s south side.

Under the proposal, the commercial space inside the building would be renovated, but Sorensen said the new uses for those areas haven’t been determined yet.

Fortify Holdings, a Portland company, is proposing the remodel. Fortify Holdings previously has worked on apartment complexes in Spokane, Washington, and Idaho.

Along with the remodel, which would include new fixtures, tile and other interior elements, Sorensen said the proposal makes provisions for site work. Most notably, that would entail repairs to the parking lot.

“It’s certainly a location that could use a facelift,” Sorensen noted.

The studios will be priced around $1,000 per month in rent.

Sorensen said plans for the assortment of cabins on the property are “up in the air.”

A timeline beyond the public hearing hasn’t been established, he added.

The Outlaw Inn was Kalispell’s most illustrious, high-end establishment for many years after it was built in 1973, and was the go-to spot for conventions for decades. After a major expansion in 1976, the Outlaw Inn was one of the largest convention facilities in Montana.

Since the early 2000s the sprawling hotel complex has undergone several ownership and name changes.

The public hearing will take place at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 11, in the Kalispell City Council Chambers, 201 First Ave. E.

Reporter Bret Anne Serbin may be reached at 406-758-4459 or bserbin@dailyinterlake.com.

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