Downtown Dunedin mixed housing-retail development gets preliminary nod
Dunedin city commissioners gave the Gateway, a $15 million downtown mixed housing-retail project, a tentative green light Thursday despite concerns about parking and incentives.
Under the incentive package presented Thursday, Pizzuti Builders Inc. would acquire a vacant, city-owned 4.25-acre tract at the intersection of Main Street and Milwaukee Avenue for its appraised value of $998,000, paying it off through annual lease payments over 25 years, with an option to purchase. The city would waive $421,175 in impact and permit fees.
Pizzuti would build a three-story development featuring 124 one- and two-bedroom rental apartments over 24,500 square feet of shops and restaurants.
Dunedin economic development director Bob Ironsmith said the project would feed $4.7 million into city coffers - $952,000 of it within the first year.
Vice Mayor Julie Ward Bujalski worried what would happen to the lease-purchase agreement should Pizzuti sell the property.
And a frustrated Mayor Dave Eggers noted that Dunedin's expensive land dedication ordinance requirements had forced Pizzuti to include a small park, an unwanted feature, in its plans instead of a much-needed parking garage.
A second public hearing and final vote are set for Aug. 15. City staffers say they hope the multi-story, mixed-use model is replicated throughout downtown.