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Leading private equity fund pitches senior housing, mixed-use in Winter Park

Leading private equity fund pitches senior housing, mixed-use in Winter Park
Winter Park's city-owned Progress Point property on Orange Avenue (Google Street View)

The nation's largest senior housing private equity fund is pursuing Winter Park's Progress Point parcel on Orange Avenue, with plans to develop a Class-A assisted living facility that would be the fund's flagship property.

The 3.7-acre site at 1150 N. Orange Ave. was acquired by Winter Park in 2011 through a property swap with a CNL Commercial Real Estate affiliate. The city discussed development plans in recent years with multiple parties, but an offer never came through until now.

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Winter Park issued a "notice of disposal" more than 90 days ago, and the only offer to come in over the past three months was at $4.5 million by ROC Seniors Housing Fund Manager, a subsidiary of Bridge Investment Group Partners. The figure was slightly above the property's appraised value from 2011.

Philip M. Anderson, former city commissioner for Winter Park and now chief investment officer of ROC Seniors, presented the Winter Park Economic Development Advisory Board with plans Tuesday for a mixed-use project that pairs a senior housing component with limited retail and dining.

Orange Avenue frontage would feature retail that draws foot traffic, while the senior housing would be pulled back from the street with a courtyard setting. An early-stage project budget has not been finalized, he said.

Anderson and the city's planning and zoning staff will continue working on details of the proposal, which has not been presented to Winter Park's City Commission yet for approval.

But the advisory board members felt the fair price, strong potential of new jobs and the opportunity to generate tax revenue from a current vacant property made the offer attractive, said Dori Stone, city planning and community development director.

"This would also really allow people to continue living in Winter Park in a type of facility we don't have here now," she said.

The acquisition and development proposal needs fleshed out with forecasts of employment, annual revenue and a project budget. Stone estimates that Anderson's group could have that ready for the City Commission by September.

The property is currently zoned commercial and would require re-zoning for a mixed-use development.

bmoser@growthspotter.com or (407) 420-5685; or mwfreeman@sun-sentinel.com or (407) 420-5290

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