Dollywood officials have announced plans to develop an approximately $20 million residence hall-style building on-site that will accommodate more than 750 employees. The new housing development will be built in partnership with Wisconsin-based Holtz Builders, Inc., who will operate the facility as one of its accommodation locations, under the company’s International Residence Hall brand. The four-story, 136,000 sq. ft. building is scheduled for completion in May 2022 and offers a vital benefit to many seeking employment in Sevier County.
Residents would include temporary seasonal hosts who are employed at Dollywood through a variety of hiring programs. Those eligible for housing in the new complex include students taking part in the U.S. Summer Work Travel program, Dollywood college interns who are working on specific assignments that provide educational credits and students taking part in U.S. college campus organizations like Campus Outreach, Navigators and Young Life. Employees of other area businesses in similar programs, through organizations like Sevier County’s Southern Hospitality Internship Program, will also be eligible. Dollywood Vice President of Human Resources Tim Berry said,
“We partnered with Holtz Builders, because they have proven successful at helping similar destinations create housing options to support the needs of their growing communities. The Smoky Mountains region has proven to be one of the most popular vacation destinations in the country, and with the growth of businesses and attractions in the area, we need more employees ready to support all of those jobs. Employee housing is a crucial piece of the employment equation in this area, and we are glad to partner with Holtz to create this new opportunity here at Dollywood.”
Holtz Builders has earned a stellar reputation for creating partnerships in resort communities to create safe, efficient and affordable housing for seasonal workers. The group has developed housing complexes in other tourist destinations in Wisconsin and Tennessee, as well as facilities that will soon be underway in Maryland. Dollywood provided the tract of land to Holtz for the project, while Holtz will construct, maintain and manage the new property, offering an affordable housing alternative for eligible hosts.
Standard rooms accommodate four residents with four beds, individual lockers, a private bathroom, a large refrigerator, a study desk and a self-contained heating and air unit. ADA accessible rooms have space for two individuals and contain the same amenities as the standard rooms. Additionally, a common kitchen, a gathering space and laundry facilities are included. Wifi is also included and available throughout the building.
The ground floor of the building will be unfinished when residents move in next year, but will be completed soon after to provide additional office space and other facilities designed to support Dollywood Hosts.
“We strive to provide safe and affordable housing for seasonal guests that come from around the world and from the U.S.,” said Dan Bullock, President of the Holtz Companies. “We hope we can have a positive impact on the overall experience they have here in this beautiful community in the Smoky Mountains.”
For more information about Dollywood, please visit Dollywood.com or download the Dollywood App.