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Developer, residents reach agreement on Madeira Beach's Town Center project

MADEIRA BEACH — A lawsuit involving the controversial Town Center of Madeira Beach project was settled Monday, clearing the way for permitting and eventual construction of two major hotels, two condominiums and a marina in the city's downtown core.

Originally, the project called for two 11-story hotels along Madeira Way and 150th Avenue, two eight-story condominium buildings, 50,000 square feet of commercial and restaurant space, and a 43-slip marina.

Earlier this year, the Treasure Island developer, Bill Karns, significantly reduced the height and scope of the project in an effort to respond to opposition from residents who feared traffic congestion and the canyon effect of tall buildings.

Monday, Karns scaled the hotels and condominiums back even further with building heights reduced to between eight and five stories.

After about 14 hours of deliberation, residents who had sued the city over its approval of the project signed off on the sharply reduced Town Center development.

"The war is over," said Sam Baker, one of the residents who challenged the projects in court. Those lawsuits will be dismissed as a result of the mediation agreement.

"We are very pleased. I'm very excited about our new development," said Karns, adding that construction could begin within six to eight months once site plans and permits are approved by the city.