Wednesday, June 20, 2018
News Roundup

As prosals come in, Temple Terrace relinquishes original redevelopment vision

TEMPLE TERRACE — In an ongoing effort to bring new life to an aging and largely unoccupied shopping plaza southeast of the N 56th Street/Bullard Parkway intersection, four firms presented plans at a Nov. 1 meeting of the Temple Terrace Redevelopment Agency at the Omar K. Lightfoot Recreation Center.

The city, forced to take out a $23.5 million loan after yet another failed effort, must either pay off or refinance the debt by April 2018. Many on the council are eager to move forward, but Council member Frank Chillura said the proposals clearly indicated Temple Terrace will fall short of its original vision.

"I think the problem the city faces is that we want the pie in the sky," he said. "I think we all want the same end result, but we have to look at what is the best fit for Temple Terrace and we’ve got to get this on the road — we’ve got to make this happen."

• • •

David Owen, Jr. the principal OF Suncoast Retail Developers, in partnership with Tom Flournoy of Flournoy Development, a residential developer, outlined a joint proposal to purchase the entire 12.26 acres for $7.7 million and build two-, three- and four-story apartment complexes on the south end of the property and another along the eastern edge, close to Bullard Parkway. The three buildings would contain a total of 263 units.

"Our business was started by my brother in 1967 and we’ve built more than 200 apartment complexes," Flournoy said, noting that their company, headquartered in Columbus, Ga., does not retain ownership of their developments after completion.

Suncoast, which as the name implies is in the business of developing retail properties, also proposed building a bank and two strip-style retail structures close to North 56th Street that would include space for a sit-down restaurant.

• • •

Ely Banks, vice president of development for the Richman Group — based in West Palm Beach and marketed as the 7th largest owner of apartment building in the United States — initially proposed purchasing 9 acres for $4 million on which it would build 200 three- to four-story garden-style apartments in two complexes along the property’s eastern boundary and another abutting North 56th Street at the southern end of the plot.

However, during last week’s meeting, he announced his plan to re-submit the proposal to include purchasing the full 12.26 acres and will formally announce details of the new proposal at the Nov. 7 Temple Terrace City Council meeting.

• • •

Jared Moon, founder and president of Paragon Property Development Group, a real estate investment and development firm, presented his proposal to purchase 2.85 acres on the northeastern edge of the property for $3.58 million.

His plan is to erect four separate buildings, one abutting Bullard Parkway to house a bank, and three along the edge of North 56th Street. He envisions one as a space for another financial institution, and the two others structures would include a 10,000 square-foot restaurant and perhaps a medical facility and/or a coffee house.

"Part of my design incorporates Mediterranean mainly one-story styling and my difference from others are features like a tower, a fountain and an archway," Moon said. "Also, my buildings are very adaptable to what is wanted."

• • •

The Wagner Property Group proposed buying 2.6 acres for $3.5 million with the intention of building a retail development at the corner of Bullard Parkway and North 56th Street. It would include a bank, a coffee house and another pad for an additional business.

However, Wagner’s vice president of real estate, Burton Tuttle, who submitted the offer, was not present to explain the specifics of the project.

• • •

Several residents expressed doubts about the feasibility of apartments on the site and leaned toward the retail-heavy Paragon proposal.

"If you build all those apartments are you sure you are going to get people in those buildings?" resident Gary Martin asked. "I think the commercial proposal is what most people are looking for."

Council member Cheri Donohue also expressed her view on the issue.

"I hope this meeting lays to rest that we are just looking for the highest bidder. We are not," she said. "But what we thought we wanted we can’t have."

Contact Joyce McKenzie at [email protected]

Comments
For starters: Rays at Astros, with a different look

For starters: Rays at Astros, with a different look

UPDATE, 6:43: Cash said the key to how the pieced the lineup together was the opportunity to give Cron (who is struggling) and Duffy (who is doing well) back to back days off. … Looking ahead to the weekend, the Rays will use RHP Ryne Stanek as...
Updated: 1 minute ago
Hillsborough commissioners approve referendum on making county officers non-partisan

Hillsborough commissioners approve referendum on making county officers non-partisan

TAMPA — The debate over whether "Rep" or "Dem" should be on the ballot alongside the name of candidates for sheriff or property appraiser is now in the hands of Hillsborough County voters.Hillsborough County commissioners voted 5-2 Wednesday to hold ...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Seminole Heights restaurant Mortar & Pestle files for bankruptcy reorganization

Seminole Heights restaurant Mortar & Pestle files for bankruptcy reorganization

TAMPA — Mortar & Pestle, a fledgling Seminole Heights eatery with a mom-and-pop pharmacy theme, has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization. Seacoast Bank was listed as the creditor with the largest unsecured claim: $1.4 million.The restaurant...
Updated: 2 hours ago

Column: It’s time for the Florida Department of Law Enforcement to process concealed weapons licenses

It is hard to believe that the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Affairs didn’t discover for a year that an employee could not log into an account needed to see results of background checks that examined, among other things, whether applicants f...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Column: I survived a suicide attempt and here’s what you should know

Column: I survived a suicide attempt and here’s what you should know

Twenty-five years ago, I was a reporter at WTSP-TV, out in the field covering Tampa Bay’s Independence Day celebrations. I expected an easy assignment talking about families and fireworks. Then the newsroom called with an urgent message: I needed to ...
Updated: 3 hours ago
15 arrested in Hillsborough construction fraud sting, one for the eighth time

15 arrested in Hillsborough construction fraud sting, one for the eighth time

TAMPA — The contractors arriving at the Brandon home thought they were meeting with a potential customer. They were wrong.In fact, the would-be clients were undercover detectives and the contractors, lacking a license to ply their trade, left the hom...
Updated: 3 hours ago
As Border Patrol searches its buses, Greyhound is pulled into immigration uproar

As Border Patrol searches its buses, Greyhound is pulled into immigration uproar

He was a 12-year Miami resident originally from Trinidad, taken off a Greyhound bus in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, by U.S. Border Patrol agents in January.She was a 60-something Jamaican national who had just met her granddaughter for the first time, w...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Phil Mickelson apologizes four days after hitting moving ball at U.S. Open

Phil Mickelson apologizes four days after hitting moving ball at U.S. Open

NEW YORK — Phil Mickelson has apologized four days after intentionally violating golf rules by hitting a moving ball on the green at the U.S. Open, saying his frustration got the best of him. The apology came Wednesday in a statement released by his ...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Could Lucky’s Market move in to Clearwater’s old Albertsons?

Could Lucky’s Market move in to Clearwater’s old Albertsons?

Lucky’s Market is considering a move in to the old Albertsons box space in Clearwater, according to preliminary plans filed with the city. Lucky’s master broker, Rick Lewellyn, was listed on an agenda as discussing renovating the existing property wi...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Couple leased someone else’s home to 12 families at same time, Largo police say

Couple leased someone else’s home to 12 families at same time, Largo police say

LARGO — At least 12 families leased the same Largo home at the same time and lost as much as $4,300 each in a fraud scheme run by a couple who portrayed themselves as owners of the property, Largo police said.Police learned of the scheme Tuesday afte...
Updated: 4 hours ago