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Owners tag Florida Mobile Home Park for sale

In what has become an increasingly common bit of news, another mobile home park is being sold.

The Florida Mobile Home Park, 8667 Park Blvd., has been placed under contract, but it is unclear whether it might be redeveloped. Robert Gallagher, husband of Ruby Gallagher who is the trustee for the park's owners, declined to comment beyond confirming the likely sale.

"I'm not interested in any publicity," Gallagher said Friday.

But Dave Greer, the president of the newly formed Florida Mobile Home Park Homeowners Association, said residents were told that the closing will likely be in April unless the mobile homeowners who rent lots in the park are able to prevent or delay the sale.

The park, which caters to people 55 and older, has about 40 spaces for mobile homes and 14 slots for RVs, according to Greer.

The mobile home park consists of two parcels totalling about 5.5 acres with a total appraised value of about $895,000, according to records from the Pinellas County Property Appraiser's Office. The western end fronts on Seminole Boulevard. The eastern fronts on Lake Seminole.

The mobile homeowners found out about the sale after confronting the owner when they saw surveyors on the property. The news, said Greer, has upset homeowners, several of whom are elderly women who are now having trouble sleeping because they are worried about their futures.

Florida is the latest of at least five parks in the Seminole area to be on the block.

The Lake Shore and Lakeview mobile home parks, also on Seminole Boulevard, have been or are being sold. Last year, a developer wanted to buy the Harbor Lights Mobile Home Park but the deal fell through and is now being litigated. The Bay Pines Mobile Home Park is also under contract. Harbor Lights and Bay Pines, on the southern edge of the city, are within the city limits, as is the Florida.

Unlike the other four, which must undergo zoning and land-use changes to be redeveloped, most of the Florida Mobile Home Park is already zoned for multifamily homes rather than for mobile homes. A small portion abutting Seminole Boulevard is zoned commercial.

The change was made two years ago at the Gallaghers' request. During those hearings, Mrs. Gallagher said she had no intention at that time of selling the property, according to city records.

City records show that, even before the rezoning, the land was zoned for single-family residences rather than mobile homes. That zoning stemmed back to the early 1990s.