Development partner seeks to continue using Highland Manor in project
From the City of Apopka
The City of Apopka today closed on a sale of the first two parcels for the new Apopka City Center – a major project that will transform downtown into an attractive mix of stores, restaurants, professional offices and a scenic public park.
The City negotiated the sale of two city-owned properties to development partner Taurus Southern Investments comprising about two acres south of Main Street in Apopka. Both parcels are part of Apopka’s Highland Manor facility. Taurus seeks to continue using Highland Manor as a destination for meetings, weddings, and special events.
Under a development agreement approved by the Apopka City Council in July 2016, Taurus will acquire parcels over time to develop the City Center. A timeline for construction of the project is under development.
“Apopka residents have been looking forward to the redevelopment of our downtown business district for more than a decade. Today’s transaction represents concrete progress toward making that happen,” said Apopka Mayor Joe Kilsheimer. “Based on reports from the Taurus team, I am very encouraged by what I’m hearing about the prospects for the kinds of businesses that our City Center will attract.”
Jeff McFadden, managing director for Taurus Southern Investments, said: “We are very excited that we are able to take the first steps toward fulfilling everyone’s desire for a successful and vibrant City Center in Apopka.”
Apopka City Center – on approximately 35 acres centrally located at the interchange of U.S. Highway 441 and State Road 436 – is proposed for 207,000 square feet of restaurants, retail and office space as well as a hotel and homes. Performance guarantees negotiated by the City require that a minimum of 30,000 square feet be dedicated to restaurants that exclude fast food establishments. No more than 20,000 square feet of office space can be constructed until City Center includes a restaurant.
Eleven acres will be dedicated for a community park, pond, and boardwalk. The long-term plan, which phases the project through the next 20 years, includes a possible 180 acres of development.
City Center is a long anticipated improvement in Apopka. The project started more than a decade ago – the city purchased much of the property from 2006 to 2011. The Apopka City Council approved a sales and purchase agreement in February 2016. A development agreement was reached with Taurus last July.
The City of Apopka is working to create a walkable downtown destination with a mix of restaurants, shops, offices and public park space. Other goals are to help diversify future growth in Apopka, to better facilitate centrally located businesses and jobs and to promote economic development in the downtown community redevelopment area.
Similar growth in other parts of Apopka includes a southwest district with the new Florida Hospital Apopka to open in November and a new interchange at State Road 414 and Marden Road, which is expected to begin in July. Professional offices, commercial and residential development also is proposed.
Sections of the new Wekiva Parkway north of U.S. Highway 441 will open in northwest Apopka in June to include a massive highway interchange at Kelly Park Road. The Kelly Park area is proposed for a large-scale, master planned development with hundreds of acres of commercial, office, medical and residential uses.